Showing posts with label Karlsruhe. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Karlsruhe. Show all posts

Sites in Baden-Württemberg (1)


Adolf-Hitler-Straße and the Martin Gate in Freiburg in the thirties, now Kaiser-Josef-Straße. Of Freiburg, Hitler described it as one "from which all joy is lacking" whose
women have addressed me in so ignoble a fashion that I cannot make up my mind to repeat their words. It's on such occasions that I become aware of the depth of human baseness. Clearly, one must not forget that these areas are still feeling the weight of several centuries of religious oppression.
"Ein Volk, ein Reich, ein Führer": The Siegesdenkmal and Münsterturm in April, 1938; the memorial has since been moved:

A group of SA-men in front of the rathaus on March 6, 1933.

Gaukulturwoche in the Münsterplatz in October 1937.

Nicolaikirche under the Hakenkreuzfahne and today. On May 1, 1933 Freiberg churches held a "Patriotic Celebration." Reverend Paul Gotthelf Schwen wrote in the community newsletter of St. James "that God sent Adolf Hitler as the saviour to us."
 The Schwabentor before and soon after the war
Schoferstraße in 1935 and now 

The Bertoldsbrunnen in 1937. The Zähringerplatz Fountain was completely destroyed on 27 November 1944 during a British air raid. The offer of the Freiburg sculptor Hugo Knittel to create a free replica of the old figure was rejected by the authorities responsible for the reconstruction in favour of a "timeless" fountain.
Süddeutsche Disconto-Gesellschaft

The Synagogue on Freiburger Werthmannplatz was destroyed like so many others on the Riechskristallnacht, November 8-9 1938.

The Synagogue in 1900 and looking at the same site today

Bertoldstrasse in 1875 and today
Looking the other direction

Bertoldstrasse 8 then and now

Haus Löwenstraße then and now, only slightly damaged in the war

Höhere Töchterschule, now the Goethegymnasium
The Bürgerhaus on the corner of Adelhauserstraße and Marienstraße

The Gasthaus zum Rössle

The Niemenstraße between Kaiserstraße and the university

Left showing Gasthaus zum Bären, the centre the Oberlindenbrunnen,  and the right branching off to Herrenstraße. 

Wartime damage

The memorial on the left is beside the new synagogue whilst the 'stumbling blocks' remind passers-by of those killed by national socialism.
Denazification at Freiburger Universität: 
The reichsadler has been scrubbed away completely from the main campus of St. Jerome University although the original legend above the entrance, Dem ewigen Deutschtum, is still legible.

The campus then and now
The rathaus originally housed the entire University of Freiburg. Following the move of the humanities in the former Jesuit College, the building was used only by the natural sciences and medicine before the city acquired the building and converted it in 1892 to the Town Hall.
The Alte Universität in Bertoldstraße

The swastika remains on the grave of Wilhelm von Biberstein, as well as the Nazi legend "And You Have Won in the End."
South of Freiburg's Old Town, on the other side of the Dreisamstadion, is the Mütterbrunnen in the Die Wiehre. Representing the "Aryan and genetically healthy mother," the work of the sculptor Helmuth Hopp based on the sketchwork of Freiburg architect Carl Anton Meckel belongs to the racial theory of "blood and soil, will to expand, population policy, the natural destiny of the woman," the statue now has suffered her nose cut off by members of the local antifa movement. 
The Münster from above in 1944 and today

Konstanz am Bodensee
During the war and today, little changed. Because it almost lies within Switzerland, directly adjacent to the Swiss border, Konstanz was not bombed by the Allied Forces during the Second World War. The city left all its lights on at night, thus fooling the bombers into thinking it was actually part of Switzerland.


Swastikas adorning the Hauptpost with the Grenadierdenkmal in front, then and now
Adolf-Hitler-Platz during the war and today. Karlsruhe was the birthplace both of Generalfeldmarschall Walter von Reichenau, born 1884, and of Dr. Hans Frank, born 1900, Reich Minister from 1934 to 1945 and Governor-General of Poland from 1939 to 1945; he was hanged in Nuremberg in 1946.
Hitler gave a speech here on March 3, 1928. In 1944 the Festhalle was destroyed in an air raid and left as a ruin until it was blown up on November 4 1952 to make way for a dispiriting new hall.
Hitler travelling through Durlach, a borough of Karlsruhe with a population today of 30,000 on  September 14, 1933.
Adolf-Hitler-Straße, now Pfinztalstraße

Adolf-Hitler-Straße looking the other way towards the Turmberg
Hitler had been travelling through Durlach to arrive at the village of Öschelbronn,where, four days earlier on September 14 1933, an ammunition factory exploded with catastrophic force destroying 203 homes from a cause unknown to this day. 

 SA marching over the alte brücke past Heidelberg schloss from the cigarette card album Kampf um's Dritte Reich (28), and the complex today.
Looking towards the other direction from the schlossberg with the wife eight decades later showing little change

Hitler in front of the Europäischer Hof where he spent the night March 31 1935 before moving on to Stuttgart, and the hotel today.

The Thingstätte in Heidelberg was started in 1934 and finished the following year. Situated on the Heiligenberg (Holy Mountain), the amphitheatre covers 25 metres of sloping land and overlooks the city. The mountain is littered with ancient burial grounds and once hosted a Roman temple at the summit dedicated to the god Mercury. Designed by the architect H. Alker, who worked for the Reich Labour Service, the Heidelberg Thingstatte features two hexagonal towers constructed to hold flags, lighting, and sound. On the opening day, 20,000 people turned out to hear Goebbels himself. After the Thingstatte fell out of favour, this site was turned into a public park and remains one to this day.

Just west of Heidelberg, the castle of Schwetzingen can be seen behind the Wehrmacht marching through the town in 1944. Schloss Schwetzingen had been the summer residence of Prince-Elector Carl Theodor (1724–99).
Panzer Kaserne, later home to the American Army as Tompkins Kaserne

Stadt der Auslandsdeutscher (City of the Abroad Germans)

 Footage of Hitler in Stuttgart (1938)

On the left is Hitler visiting Stuttgart on April 1, 1938. Both photos show the end of Königstraße looking at Stuttgart Central Station then and now. On that day Hitler took advantage of the rejoicing due to the anschluss when he arrived at 3:00 p.m. on April 1, Hitler arrived in Stuttgart on a special train.
In the City Hall, the Mayor Dr. Stroelin greeted Hitler at a reception held in his honour. Hitler replied to this welcome in a short address, emphasizing that the concept of a Greater Germany was nowhere as lively and vibrant as in Stuttgart, “the city of Germans living abroad.” At 9:00 p.m., Hitler delivered another campaign speech at a mass rally in Stuttgart. Following the “party narrative,” he again turned to the events in Austria: “We have all forgotten what it means to be compelled to live outside of the German Volksgemeinschaft!”
Doramus (1079) The Complete Hitler
People marching past the Stuttgarter Polizeipräsidium May 1, 1933. It would later become the Gestapo Headquarters from 1937 to 1945, even after being bombed in September 1944.  As late as 13 April 1945 four prisoners in the cellar were hanged by the Gestapo. On 22 April at 11 o'clock the mayor, Karl Strölin, officially transferred the city to Karl Strölin to the French commanding general.
When French troops occupied Stuttgart – which was meant to form part of the American Zone as the capital of Württemberg – the Americans ordered them to leave. De Gaulle refused, saying he would stay put until the zones were finalised. The French were causing problems in the Levant too, and in an act of bravura against the Italians (who had taken back Haute Savoie and Nice during the war) they occupied the French- speaking Val d’Aosta. The American solution was to offer them some bits of Baden and Württemberg while keeping the lion’s share for themselves...French soldiers’ behaviour in Stuttgart, where perhaps 3,000 women and eight men were raped, was thought to have added to American fury at their overstepping their lines. [R. F. Keeling (Gruesome Harvest, Chicago 1947, 56–7) gives the official figure as 1,198, but the Germans thought it more like 5,000.]
MacDonogh After the Reich The Brutal History of the Allied Occupation
The French took a terrible toll in their zone, by forced seizure of food and housing, and by physical violence including mass rapes, in Stuttgart and elsewhere. The famine went on for years. The churches flew black flags. The children were too weak to play. The official ration in the French zone in January 1947 was 450 calories per day, half the ration of the Belsen concentration camp, according to the writer and theologian Prince zu Lцwenstein.
James Bacque (94) Crimes and Mercies
Königsbau in 1940 and today
The Neues Schloss then and now
The Wilhelmspalais during the Third Reich (now serving as the Stadtmuseum) with its Grosser Saal festooned in swastikas in 1940  
The swastika over the Fruchtsäule in 1935 
The Tagblatt-Turm under construction in 1928 and then/now

The current Mercedes-Benz Arena was originally built in 1933 after designs by German architect Paul Bonatz and named the "Adolf-Hitler-Kampfbahn". From 1945 to 1949 it was called Century Stadium and later Kampfbahn and was used by US Troops to play baseball.The name Neckarstadion was used since 1949. It is currently home to VfB Stuttgart in the Bundesliga (and to the Stuttgarter Kickers when they played in the Bundesliga).  
The Bismarckturm outside the city 

Bad Cannstatt
The Rosensteinbunker outside Stuttgart then and now

Adolf-Hitler-Platz, now Obertorplatz
Located 37 miles south of Stuttgart, during the start of Nazi rule most of the businesses in Hechingen were in Jewish hands and were closed or 'aryanised'. Much of the architecture of the city was destroyed or damaged by Nazi attempts to build air raid shelters in public buildings. Here is St. Johnnes Kirche, from an 1880 engraving and today.

The rathaus, shown here in 1940 and today, was so damaged that it had to be destroyed.  
Marktplatz then and now
Many industries, including DEHOMAG, a predecessor of IBM, were relocated to Hechingen from damaged areas of Germany, such as Berlin. Parts of the Kaiser Wilhelm Society were also relocated there.  In April 1945, American troops entered Hechingen and took over the atomic research laboratory and nuclear reactor. Many of the physicists were interned in Farm Hall in England and tried over the following years. Many of the scientists went on to have successful postwar careers for instance; on 15 November 1945 the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences announced that Otto Hahn had been awarded the 1944 Nobel Prize in Chemistry "for his discovery of the fission of heavy atomic nuclei."  
The town has completely restored its nineteenth-century synagogue, shown here in 1937 and today. 

Breisach am Oberrhein
Adolf Hitler Straße then and now. During World War II, 85% of Breisach was destroyed by Allied artillery as the Allies crossed the Rhine. The St. Stephansmünster was also heavily damaged. 

The rathaus on the day Hitler was appointed Chancellor- January 30, 1933 and today. Hitler had visited the town on July 29 the year before.
The war memorial on Luisenplatz (formerly Horst-Wessel-Platz) still retains the Nazi ideological characteristicsut had when first inaugurated May 22, 1938. As late as the 1970s it was used as the site for former SS members to rally and honour their comrades of the Waffen-SS.
The church Unserer Lieben Frau then and now

 The war memorial from a 1935 postcard, unchanged today

The monument overlooking the town was built in 1933 and officially inaugurated in 1937. Shortly before the war ended the swastika was removed and in 1952 replaced with a cross.

Schloss Sigmaringen 
Following the Allied invasion of France, the French Vichy Regime was moved from France into Schloss Sigmaringen. The princely family was forced by the Gestapo out of the castle and moved to Schloss Wilflingen. The French authors Louis-Ferdinand Céline and Lucien Rebatet, who had written political and anti-semitic works, feared for their safety and fled to Sigmaringen with the Vichy government. Céline's 1957 novel D'un château l'autre, describes the end of the war and the fall of Sigmaringen on 22 April 1945. The book was made into a German movie in 2006, through the German media companies ZDF and Arte, called Die Finsternis. Removed to Sigmaringen, Germany, in the summer of 1944, the Vichy government no longer had any relevance. Postwar, some 10,000 French were executed for collaboration with the Germans, including Laval. Pétain, stripped of his rank, was condemned to death, but de Gaulle commuted the sentence to life in prison. Despite de Gaulle’s ridiculous efforts to cast France during the war as a nation of resisters, the four-year-long Vichy regime left a legacy of shame and controversy that still shames France today.


Irving in Goebbels: Mastermind of the Third Reich (30) writes how Goebbels played "the huge cathedral organ" in the cathedral shown in the background in 1918 for two other students he had travelled the area with.

Nazi functionaries in front of the rathaus entrance in 1938, and the rathaus today

Nazis intimidating those thinking of shopping at the Jewish-owned Kaufhaus Landauer, and stolperstein at the site today, remembering the murdered Landauers.

Eitel, Peter Ravensburg im Dritten Reich. 1997

The Stadtkirche St. Dionysius in 1943 and today