The IPB was founded in 1891-92, as a result of consultations at the Universal Peace Congresses, large gatherings held annually to bring together the national peace societies that had gradually developed, mainly in Europe and North America, from the end of the Napoleonic Wars onwards.
Few peace advocates know the name Elie Ducommun. For this reason, a two-day history seminar was held in Geneva to explore the life of the remarkable Swiss politician who won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1902, together with IPB's second Secretary-General, Albert Gobat. The 'Ducommun Committee' decided to invite specialists from several countries to offer analyses of Ducommun's role in many fields.
Baroness Bertha Felicie Sophie von Suttner (9 June 1843 - 21 June 1914), born Countess Kinsky in Prague, was the posthumous daughter of a field marshal. In 1891, she was responsible for the creation of the Permanent International Peace Bureau in Bern. In 1892 she promised to keep Alfred Nobel informed on the progress of the peace movement and, if possible, to convince him of its effectiveness. She was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1905.