Wentzel was a surveyor, timber merchant and politician in the colony of South Australia. Emil emigrated to South Australia on the Hermann von Beckerath from Bremen, Germany, arriving in December 1847. He worked for a time as surveyor and engineer with the Central Road Board, but in 1852, after numerous complaints and several jobs which cost significantly more than budgeted for he was dismissed from the service. He thereupon set himself up as a timber merchant on East Terrace, Adelaide, and grew quite wealthy.
Emil Wentzel was MHA for Encounter Bay from April 1870 – December 1871.
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