Remaining Nazi Sites in Westphalia (1)

Bad Godesberg (North Rhine-Westphalia)
This is the site where, in 1938, Neville Chamberlain met with Hitler over the Sudetenland crisis at the Rheinhotel Dreesen in Bad Godesberg. Bad Godesberg was the first major German city to be transferred to Allied forces control without a battle in 1945. 
The Rheinhotel Dreesen on the Rhine River at Bad Godesberg in Bonn was the site of a convention of SA and ϟϟ leaders on August 19 1933 in which Hitler delivered a two-and-a-half-hour address, commenting, among other things, on the relationship between the SA and the Reichswehr. Eventually the hotel would be the site of Hitler's planning for the purge of the SA and its leader Ernst Röhm in June 1934.
It was from this hotel, run by Herr Dreesen, an early Nazi crony of Hitler, that the Fuehrer had set out on the night of June 29-30, 1934, to kill Roehm and carry out the Blood Purge. The Nazi leader had often sought out the hotel as a place of refuge where he could collect his thoughts and resolve his hesitations.
Shirer (nb.349) Rise And Fall Of The Third Reich
The hotel also played host to meetings between Hitler and British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain on 21-23 September 1938, regarding Hitler's proposed annexation of the Sudetenland in Czechoslovakia; before he flew to Bad Godesberg, Chamberlain aptly remarked that he was setting out "to do battle with an evil beast." As Kershaw relates,
It was almost eleven o’clock when Chamberlain returned to the Hotel Dreesen. The drama of the late-night meeting was enhanced by the presence of advisers on both sides, fully aware of the peace of Europe hanging by a thread, as Schmidt began to translate Hitler’s memorandum. It demanded the complete withdrawal of the Czech army from the territory drawn on a map, to be ceded to Germany by 28 September. Hitler had spoken to Goebbels on 21 September of demands for eight days for Czech withdrawal and German occupation. He was now, late on the evening of 23 September, demanding the beginning of withdrawal in little over two days and completion in four. Chamberlain raised his hands in despair. ‘That’s an ultimatum,’ he protested. ‘With great disappointment and deep regret I must register, Herr Reich Chancellor,’ he remarked, ‘that you have not supported in the slightest my efforts to maintain peace.’
At this tense point, news arrived that Beneš had announced the general mobilisation of the Czech armed forces. For some moments no one spoke. War now seemed inevitable. Then Hitler, in little more than a whisper, told Chamberlain that despite this provocation he would hold to his word and undertake nothing against Czechoslovakia – at least as long as the British Prime Minister remained on German soil. As a special concession, he would agree to 1 October as the date for Czech withdrawal from the Sudeten territory. It was the date he had set weeks earlier as the moment for the attack on Czechoslovakia. He altered the date by hand in the memorandum, adding that the borders would look very different if he were to proceed with force against Czechoslovakia. Chamberlain agreed to take the revised memorandum to the Czechs. After the drama, the meeting ended in relative harmony. Chamberlain flew back, disappointed but not despairing, next morning to London to report to his cabinet.
Neville Chamberlain and Joachim von Ribbentrop leaving the Hotel Petersberg, 25th September 1938.
 Despite his misgivings about the growing opposition to his policies at home, Mr. Chamberlain appeared to be in excellent spirits when he arrived at Godesberg and drove through streets decorated not only with the swastika but with the Union Jack to his headquarters at the Petershof, a castlelike hotel on the summit of the Petersberg, high above the opposite (right) bank of the Rhine. He had come to fulfill everything that Hitler had demanded at Berchtesgaden, and even more. There remained only the details to work out and for this purpose he had brought along, in addition to Sir Horace Wilson and William Strang (the latter a Foreign Office expert on Eastern Europe), the head of the drafting and legal department of the Foreign Office, Sir William Malkin. Late in the afternoon the Prime Minister crossed the Rhine by ferry to the Hotel Dreesen where Hitler awaited him. For once, at the start at least, Chamberlain did all the talking. For what must have been more than an hour, judging by Dr. Schmidt’s lengthy notes of the meeting, the Prime Minister, after explaining that following ”laborious negotiations” he had won over not only the British and French cabinets but the Czech government to accept the Fuehrer’s demands, proceeded to outline in great detail the means by which they could be implemented. Accepting Runciman’s advice, he was now prepared to see the Sudetenland turned over to Germany without a plebiscite. As to the mixed areas, their future could be determined by a commission of three members, a German, a Czech and one neutral. Furthermore, Czechoslovakia’s mutual-assistance treaties with France and Russia, which were so distasteful to the Fuehrer, would be replaced by an international guarantee against an unprovoked attack on Czechoslovakia, which in the future ”would have to be completely neutral.”
Shirer (349)
Another gasthaus- the Zur Lindenwirtin- with the Godesburg tower in the background, now with a different flag
Bonner Münster on June 6, 1941 and today

During the Second World War, Bonn acquired military significance because of its strategic location on the Rhine River, which formed a natural barrier to easy penetration into the German heartland from the west. The Allied ground advance into Germany reached Bonn on March 7, 1945, and the US 1st Infantry Division captured the city during the battle of March 8–9, 1945.  
Following the war, Bonn was in the British zone of occupation, and in 1949 became the de facto capital of the newly formed Federal Republic of Germany (the de jure capital of the Federal Republic throughout the years of the Cold War division of Germany was always Berlin).  Nevertheless,  Berlin's previous history as united Germany's capital was strongly connected with Imperial Germany, the Weimar Republic and more ominously with Nazi Germany. It was felt that a new peacefully united Germany should not be governed from a city connected to such overtones of war. Additionally, Bonn was closer to Brussels, headquarters of the EU.  The heated debate that resulted was settled by the Bundestag only on June 20, 1991. By a vote of 338–320, the Bundestag voted to move the seat of government to Berlin. The vote broke largely along regional lines, with legislators from the south and west favouring Bonn and legislators from the north and east voting for Berlin. It also broke along generational lines as well; older legislators with memories of Berlin's past glory favoured Berlin, while younger legislators favoured Bonn. Ultimately, the votes of the 'Ossi' legislators tipped the balance in favour of Berlin.
Bonner Universität hitler 
Solemn hoisting of the swastika flag at Bonner Universität in February, 1933 and the site today

 Beethoven's birthplace at Bonngasse 20 and during the war. Beethoven’s ‘Heroica’ symphony was played on February 3, 1943 during the official declaration that the battle of Stalingrad- the same piece played during Hitler's speech on Heroes’ Day in 1933. The year before Hitler declared at Berlin's Sportpalast on February 15, 1942 to 9,883 officer candidates that 
When Mr. President Roosevelt stutters about culture, then I can only say: what Mr. President Roosevelt calls culture, we call lack of culture. To us, it is a stupid joke. I have already declared a few times that just one of Beethoven’s symphonies contains more culture than all of America has managed to produce up to now! Strictly speaking, we colonised England and not the other way around.
On the other side Churchill’s V-for-victory device was used by the BBC in Morse code as the opening bar of Beethoven’s Fifth symphony. The house itself survived the war almost unscathed although during the air raid of the Bonn city centre on October 18, 1944, a fire bomb fell on the roof of Beethoven's birthplace. Thanks to the help of janitor Heinrich Hasselbach and Wildemans, who were later awarded the German Federal Cross of Merit, as well as Dr. Franz Rademacher from the Rhenish National Museum, the bomb did not ignite a conflagration.

Cologne (North Rhine-Westphalia)
Reichsadler found on the Autobahnbrücke Rodenkirchen. Rodenkirchen is a southern borough of Cologne.
At the beginning of the Third Reich, Cologne was considered difficult by the Nazis because of deep-rooted communist and Catholic influences in the city. The Nazis were always struggling for control of the city. Local elections on March 13, 1933 resulted in the Nazi Party winning 39.6% of the vote, followed by the catholic Zentrum Party with 28.3%, the Social Democratic Party of Germany with 13.2%, and the Communist Party of Germany with 11.1%. One day later, on 14 March, Nazi followers occupied the city hall and took over government. Communist and Social Democratic members of the city assembly were imprisoned, and Mayor Adenauer was dismissed.  
When the Nazis came to power in 1933, the Jewish population of Cologne was about 20,000. By 1939, 40% of the city's Jews had emigrated. The vast majority of those who remained had been deported to concentration camps by 1941. The trade fair grounds next to the Deutz train station were used to herd the Jewish population together for deportation to the death camps and for disposal of their household goods by public sale. 
On Kristallnacht in 1938, Cologne's synagogues were desecrated or set on fire.  It was planned to rebuild a large part of the inner city, with a main road connecting the Deutz station and the main station, which was to be moved from next to the cathedral to an area adjacent to today's university campus, with a huge field for rallies, the Maifeld, next to the main station. The Maifeld, between the campus and the Aachener Weiher artificial lake, was the only part of this over-ambitious plan to be realized before the start of the war. After the war, the remains of the Maifeld were buried with rubble from bombed buildings and turned into a park with rolling hills, which was christened Hiroshima-Nagasaki-Park in August 2004 as a memorial to the victims of the nuclear bombs of 1945. An inconspicuous memorial to the victims of the Nazi regime is situated on one of the hills.  
On the night of May 30–31, 1942, Cologne was the target for the first thousand bomber raid of the war. Between 469 and 486 people, around 90% of them civilians, were reported killed, more than 5,000 were injured, and more than 45,000 lost their homes. It was estimated that up to 150,000 of Cologne's population of around 700,000 left the city after the raid. The Royal Air Force lost 43 of the 1,103 bombers sent. By the end of the war, 90% of Cologne's buildings had been destroyed by Allied aerial bombing raids, most of them flown by the RAF.
 After that it was regularly bombarded until 1945. On the right is an image from a series of stamps, showing Sir Arthur Harris, with a Lancaster bomber from his command. It was his plan that brought about the indiscriminate area bombing of German cities, destroying houses and civilian morale as much as factories and military targets. As he stated,

The Nazis entered this war under the rather childish delusion that they were going to bomb everyone else, and nobody was going to bomb them. At Rotterdam, London, Warsaw, and half a hundred other places, they put their rather naive theory into operation. They sowed the wind, and now they are going to reap the whirlwind.
On 10 November 1944, a dozen members of the anti-Nazi Ehrenfeld Group were hanged in public. Six of them were 16-year-old boys of the Edelweiss Pirates youth gang, including Barthel Schink; Fritz Theilen survived.  The bombings continued and people moved out. By May 1945 only 20,000 residents remained out of 770,000. The outskirts of Cologne were reached by US troops on March 4, 1945. The inner city on the left bank of the Rhine was captured in half a day on March 6, meeting only minor resistance. Because the Hohenzollernbrücke was destroyed by retreating German pioneers, the boroughs on the right bank remained under German control until mid-April 1945.
Hitler inspecting a model of the cathedral and the real thing in 1936 when, on March 28, Hitler arrived in Cologne and had himself celebrated as the “liberator of the Rhineland” at an official reception in the Giirzenich banquet hall. He received the praise of various “liberated” districts and declared

That Providence has chosen me to perform this act [restoring German military sovereignty in the Rhineland) is something I feel is the greatest blessing of my life.

Cologne after the war with its cathedral seemingly the only intact building
Cologne, Germany from aerial photos taken by the Nazis to assist in rebuilding plans once Germany won the war. The photos were recently discovered in an attic by the daughter of an employee of Speer's building inspection department.
Nazi leaders in the bombed Cologne Cathedral with footage of the city ruins immediately after the war

 A cloth with a drop of blood from the late Pope John Paul II has been stolen from Cologne Cathedral.  German police said a visitor noticed on Sunday that the religious relic had disappeared and alerted a church usher. In a statement, police quoted the cathedral's provost, Gerd Bachner, lamenting the spiritual loss of the relic.  Police said the cloth was in a glass container that had been pried from a base of a sculpture commemorating the pope's visit to Cologne in 1980. Bachner urged the thief to return the relic Pope John Paul II was the leader of the Catholic Church from 1978 until his death in 2005.
Troops entering the Rhineland via the Hohenzollernbrücke in March 1936 in contravention of the treaties of Versailles and Locarno.
Attempts to protect the interior from further collapse. Inside, under a choir-stall seat, a judensau is still allowed to remain. On the left a Jew holds up a pig by the front leg whilst a second Jew feeds it whilst a third kneels down in order to drink from its teats. In the right quatrefoil a pig with three piglets is knocked out of a trough. From the right a Jew leads a boy who is distinguished by a nimbus with a cross which continues to trot out the mediaeval lie about Jewish ritual murder of Christian children.
The altar in 1943 and 2013, when lunatic Josephine Witt disrupted Christmas service by jumping topless onto the altar with the words "I am God" scrawled on her chest.
Adolf-Hitler-Platz, now Ebertplatz.
An SA man walking through the Heumarkt, and today
 The Nazis celebrating the Machtübernahme in 1933 in front of the rathaus, and how it appeared after their war, now extensively rebuilt
The Rathausturm from the Alter Markt 

1935 Gau parade in front of the opera, and the current opera today 
Hitler at the balcony of the Dom Hotel, March 30 1938; rebuilt after the war
Prinzenhof in 1939 and today
The Hahnentor sporting the swastika and today 
On the left is a closer view of what was the Schlagetersäule on Rudolfplatz which in 1933 was renamed Schlageterplatz to which the column was added.  Albert Leo Schlageter was born in Schönau in the Black Forest on August 12, 1894. On May 26, 1923, he was shot because of sabotage in the Ruhr which had been occupied by the French at that time. Because of the special historical situation, Albert Leo Schlagter became the last soldier of the Great War and, at the same time, the first soldier of the Third Reich according to Nazi propaganda. Between 1919 and 1921 he was involved as a volunteer corps member in battles in the Baltics and in Upper Silesia as well as the suppression of a communist uprising in the Ruhr. From 1922 Schlageter had been a member of the "Greater German Labour Party," (Grossdeutschen Arbeiterpartei), a branch of the NSDAP. He ended up being betrayed after his sabotage during the so-called "Ruhr struggle" against the French occupation forces, arrested by the French occupation forces and on May 26, 1923, shot near Dusseldorf.
After the war, showing the severe damage
What remains of the Stapelhaus from the south with the cathedral in the background. In 1942 and again in 1944-45 the building was devastated by fire bombs with only the stair tower and south side of the building survived. In the 1960s it was converted into the form it has today.
Gestapo Headquarters
Standing in front of the former EL-DE Haus, now officially known as the National Socialist Documentation Centre, the former headquarters of the Gestapo and now a museum documenting the Third Reich. The building was at first the business premises of the jeweller Leonard Dahlen - hence the name. In 1934, the Nazis seized the building from him and turned it into the headquarters of the secret police, Gestapo. It proved an excellent location as it was close to the police headquarters in Krebsgasse, the courthouse and the Central Prison- Klingelpütz . The Gestapo had the building rebuilt for their purposes- offices had been set up and ten prison cells established within the upper two basements . This was Gestapo HQ from 1 December 1935 until March 2 1945 , a mere few days before the invasion of American troops in the city on March 6, 1945. It seems like a special irony of history that it is precisely this house has survived the war, whilst  90% of the city was destroyed. After the bombings, the basements of the building, which had been used as torture rooms, were used to store wartime files and paperwork.
In 2006, the National Socialist Documentation Centre was awarded the Best in Heritage award, which is given to select museums. The only other German museum to have won the prize is the Buddenbrook Museum in Lübeck.
Video from inside the museum

Inside the basement to the Gestapo cells:

Some poignant examples of messages prisoners left behind on the cell walls:

Many prisoners, never again to see their freedom, wrote messages or recorded figures, landscapes, animals and more on the walls of their cells. There are still numerous inscriptions which date from the end of 1943 until 1945. Other inscriptions are practically invisible. About 600 inscriptions in Cyrillic were written Russians and Ukrainians whilst another 300 were written in French, Dutch, Polish, English and Spanish. After the war, some partitions were removed from the cells and thus, in cells 2 and 3 and in the cells 5 and 6, some inscriptions were lost.  Some examples: 
 The Russian POW Askold Kurow (who escaped and survived) wrote from cell 1:  "Here at the Gestapo HQ with two friends, Askold Kurow and Gaidai Vladimir, since 24/12/44. It is now already February 3, 1945. 40 people were hanged. We have spent 43 days since interrogation and await the gallows. I ask those who read this to inform our comrades that we have perished in these torture chambers."
 In cell 1 there is also the signature of Hans Weinsheime from 1944:  "If no one thinks of you, your mother thinks of you. " 
 A French prisoner wrote in cell 6:  "The German customs reveal particularly in cell 6, where the ready to bring it up to thirty-three hineinzupferchen people at once."  
Probably from a Edelweißpiraten:  "Rio de Schanero, aheu kapalero, Edelweiss Pirates are true"
The Kölner Zeughaus in the 1930s and today. The armoury was built by the Imperial Town of Cologne as the weapons arsenal around 1600 in Dutch Renaissance style. Today, it serves as the Kölnisches Stadtmuseum, focussing on every day life in Cologne from the Middle Ages until today.  
The neue Universitäts Hauptgebäude by architect Adolf Abel, 1934, in 1935 and today with the Nazi eagle removed. After the war the British military government graciously approved the reopening of the university which resumed its lessons on November 26, 1945. With 1,549 admitted students on December 10, 1945, the solemn reopening of the university took place. The students were to be educated into the "ideal of pure humanity". According to the Cologne history professor Erich Meuthen, these lines of thought corresponded to an interpretation common after 1945: the turning away from the anti-Christian tradition had led to the barbarism of National Socialism. Critics later evaluated this "new beginning" as a restoration and "silence" of the Nazi past.  In fact, in 1948 Theodor Schieder was appointed Ordinary for Middle and Modern History despite his own personal history being known to his colleagues: Schieder had became a Nazi party member in 1937 and was an active member of the NS-Dozentenbund. In 1939 Schieder proposed the deportation of several hundred thousand Poles as well as the "Entjudung" of the rest of Poland in a "Polendenkschrift". By 1962 he became the rector of the University of Cologne for two years.
The Heumarkt in 1938 and today
The façade of the church of  St. Maria in der Schnurgasse in the 1930s and today. During the war in April 1942 after an incendiary attack hit the church, the building burnt down. The interior design and the image of the "Regina Pacis"were destroyed. Only the walls of the western façade, the southern transept and the church tower were partially preserved. After the end of the war Joseph Cardinal Frings and the mayor of Cologne, Konrad Adenauer, pressed for the return of the sisters who were to rebuild the original Carmel on the Schnurgasse. In mid-1945, the first Carmelites from Cologne returned from their refuge, the Welden Monastery near Augsburg, to Cologne and organized its reconstruction. As early as July 1946 the foundation stone was laid for a new monastery. In 1948 a donated statue of the Virgin Mary was consecrated in the partially restored monastery church to replace the destroyed image. In 1949 the sisters were able to return to a first tract of the rebuilt convent after about 150 years since their abolition. In 1957, after their consecration on Easter, the bells of the church rang for the first time again. By 1964 the church was externally restored as it originally appeared in 1716. Even the original interior was replaced by correcting the structural changes of the 19th century by, for example, rearranging the aisles as originally envisioned.

From Adolf-Hitler-Platz to Ebertplatz 
Swastikas above the Kölner Eis-und Schwimmstadion and its current incarnation 
An American M26 Pershing in front of the Commerzbank as seen in the footage for "Duel at the Cathedral"

A woman sits with all her possessions amidst the ruins.
The removal of some 13.5 million cubic meters of rubble from the centre of Cologne alone took over a year, to say nothing of the makeshift restoration of canals, bridges over the Rhine, and the central train station. As if the cleanup in the factories had not been hard enough, “the chief problems only emerged when actual production was restarted,” because the delivery of raw materials slowed and energy supplies remained unreliable. Time and again, frustrating bottlenecks thwarted a revival of activity. If the mines, for example, managed to extract sufficient coal, there would be “no rolling stock” available to transport it to either factories or homes. Likewise, supplying foodstuffs proved particularly difficult, since domestic production was unable to satisfy the needs of a population whose numbers had rapidly grown with the influx of refugees. Rationing of the shortages, moreover, led to a great deal of injustice, with some groups and areas inevitably getting more than others. Thus despite much hard work, by 1946 industrial production had only reached 50 to 55 percent of its pre-war level.
Jarausch (82) After Hitler: Recivilising Germans, 1945–1995
The hauptbahnhof in the 1930s, 1960 and today. Things have definitely changed since, with the mayor of Cologne forced to admit the "outrageous" series of New Year's Eve attacks on women at the main train station by large gangs of men “of Arab or North African appearance” after police described a group of some 1,000 men who took over the area around the main station on New Year’s Eve who proceeded to attack and rape numerous German women whilst the authorities covered up all mention of such attacks by migrants.

Bad Honnef 
The Feuerschlößchen on Rommersdorfer Straße 78–82 is a villa built in 1905/06 and remains as a monument under monument protection. Under the Nazis it became the new "Gauschulungsburg" when it was inaugurated July 1 1934 at the presence of DAF directors Robert Ley and Gauleiter Josef Grohé.   
During Reichskristallnacht in November 1938, the Honnefer synagogue, formerly an evangelical church, was set on fire on the Linzerstrasse near the Ohbach and was destroyed in this way. Many Jewish inhabitants emigrated. The Jews living in Honnef after 1939 had to leave their homes and were all concentrated within two houses in Honnef. From here they had to relocate to a camp in Much. In July 1941, transport to the east was carried out from Much to their deaths.  In the Second World War, around 250 Honnef soldiers were killed and the city had three civilian casualties. Honnef had been largely spared from air raids in the Allied air war. One of the few destruction was that of the Penaten factory. For this reason, foreign authorities moved to the city, including parts of the Upper Prussianium of the Rhine province from Koblenz, the NSKOV to Linzerstrasse 108. Numerous prisoners of war and later forced labourers, especially women from the Soviet Union, worked in Honnef. An air attack on Honnef with bombs dropped onto Lohfelder Straße took place in November 1944. On the evening of March 10, 1945, the 331st Infantry Regiment of the 78th Infantry Division of the United States had occupied Honnef. Three days later the American combatants reached Hohenhonnef and the Rhine heights near Rhöndorf.
The Heimbach Hydroelectric power station during the final defeat of Germany and today. The power plant survived the war relatively undamaged although on February 11, 1945, the German armed forces blew up the tunnel seals on the power plant's side to prevent the Anglo-American allied forces from breaking through to the Rhine. Consequently, the Urft reservoir drained completely and the power plant was flooded by masses of water and rubble. Following extensive and arduous cleanup and repair work – both labour and tools were in short supply – the first four turbines could be started up again in January 1948, followed by the other four turbines at the end of the year.

Standing in front of schloß Augustusburg which was bombed on March 4, 1945. From shortly after World War II until 1994, the schloß was used as a reception hall for guests of state by the German President, as it is not far from Bonn, which was the capital of Germany at that time.

Dortmund (North Rhine-Westphalia)

Book burning in front of the Amtshaus
Hansaplatz in 1933 and during the 2006 World Cup

The Market operating in Hansaplatz with the swastika adorning the maypole during the Nazi era and today
Hansaplatz in 1938 awash with swastikas with the Reinoldikirche serving as a point of reference then and now
Nazis hoisting the hakenkreuz over the rathaus March 3, 1933
nazi architecture 
The Dortberghaus was completed in 1938 after the plans of Cologne architect Emil Rudolf Mewes as an administrative building of the Gelsenkirchen Mining-AG and displays classic Nazi architecture. By the beginning of the Second World War it was planned as a U-shaped building but not fully completed. It sported a bust of Hitler inside shown here.
The former Gestapo headquarters (and way station for those being sent to concentration camps) today serves as the site for the exhibition Mahn- und Gedenkstätte Steinwache.
Inside is a reminder that from 1933 to 1945, over 66,000 people were imprisoned, some 30,000 of them for "political reasons".
 The nazi eagle remains above the entrance
Another reichsadler, this one of the luftwaffe, remains in situ on the façade of the police academy 

The hauptbahnhof in 1944 and today
The Hohensyburgdenkmal


Renamed Adolf-Hitler-Platz in 1933 and serving as the main site for Nazi demonstrations in Essen, the main square reverted back to Burgplatz after the war. Here the Volkshochschule on Burgplatz 1 is decked out in Nazi regalia.
After the right-wing Kapp Putsch in Berlin had failed in the spring of 1920, the Rote Ruhrarmee rose up against the SPD-led national government with street fighting in Barmen , Duisburg, Elberfeld , Esseb, Remscheid and Velbert. On March 19, 1920 armed "Bolshevik" groups in Essen marched up to the site where civil defence units of the police and Home Guards waited; forty were killed. It was the largest resistance movement that has taken place in Germany since the peasant wars of the 16th century.
Hitler had visited Essen a number of times. During one speech he made here at the Exhibition Grounds on November 2, 1933 Hitler claimed that "I will never sign anything knowing that it can never be upheld, because I am determined to abide by what I sign." The following year on June 28 Hitler and Göring went to Essen to attend the church wedding ceremony of the Essen Gauleiter, Josef Terboven. This was taking place during the so-called Night of Long Knives during which he purged his own followers in the SA. While he had been in Essen and had toured the labour camps in the West German Gaue in order to create the outer appearance of absolute calm so that the traitors might not be warned, the plan of carrying out a thorough purge had been fixed to the last detail.
Burgplatz in 1941 with the Johanneskirche and Münsterkirche and today
The Lichtburg on Adolf-Hitler-Strasse and Platz. The Lichtburg was built as a result of the city general plan of 1924. The exterior was designed by municipal planner Ernst Bode in a stark New Objectivist style without surface adornment; the building had a 20-metre dome, at the time the largest in a German theatre. It had 2,000 upholstered seats with an electrical system which sent a message to the cashier when the seat was occupied, and a 150,000 Reichsmark Wurlitzer organ, at the time the largest in any European cinema, with sound effects including traffic noise and thunder. The 30-person orchestra was drawn in part from the Cologne Philharmonic. Under the Third Reich, the Lichtburg's operator, Karl Wolffsohn, a Berlin publisher and entrepreneur, was forced as a Jew to sell it in 1933/34 for a tenth of its value to Universum Film AG (UfA). He and his family fled to Palestine in 1939 and he did not live to see the end of his lawsuit for recompense. In 2006 a memorial plaque was placed on the building; Wolffsohn's nephew, the historian Michael Wolffsohn, was present at the unveiling and heads the Berlin Lichtburg-Stiftung, among whose projects is a German-Turkish-Jewish cultural centre.  During World War II, the building was almost completely destroyed by Allied bombing in 1943. The auditorium was completely destroyed by fire, but the walls remained standing. 
 The Hauptpost on Hachestraße 2, completed in 1933.  The reichsadler still adorns its façade.
The Reichsgartenschau in 1938 with the swastika flying atop the Grugaturm 
The Reichsgartenschau in 1938 with the swastika flying atop the Grugaturm today. The Botanischer Garten Grugapark was established in 1927 for recreation, teaching, and research. Parts of the garden were destroyed in World War II but gradually rebuilt and re-designed for the Essen Bundesgartenschau of 1965. 
The Hotel Vereinshaus, from where Hitler spoke on June 16 and 20, 1926. The postcard in the centre dates from a decade after.

The Hotel Handelshof in 1941 and today. The Hotel hanged a banner that read  „Herzlich Willkommen in der Waffenschmiede des Reiches“ "Welcome to the armoury of the Reich" during a visit by Benito Mussolini accompanied by Hitler in 1937 . During the Battle of the Ruhr in the Second World War the building was severely damaged in 1945 but repaired without needing major modifications.
Berliner Straße then and now
Adolf-Hitler-Platz and today, now Willy-Brandt-Platz
Haus der Technik  hitler war krieg hakenkreuz swastika 
The Haus der Technik in 1941 and today
Synagogue Kristallnacht
  The synagogue in 1915, attacked during Reichskristallnacht, and today 
Another view in 1941 and today
Gymnasium Essen-Borbeck- the centre photo shows the school celebration for the re-establishment of the compulsory military service on 5 April 1935. The speaker is Head master and Propagandawart Walter PfeilIt.
 „Heldengedenktag" in the auditorium on 11 March 1933, „Day of Potsdam" 21 March 1933, „Ehrung des Lieblingskomponisten des Führers"- (Wagnerfestival as Hitler's favourite composer) 3 April 1933 and „Schlageter-Feier" 27 May 1933
May Day 1933 with portraits of Friedrich the Great, Hindenburg and Hitler, „Saarbefreiungsfeier" 1 March 1935, “Celebration for memory of the seizure of power” on 30 January 1936 and „Heldengedenktag" March 7 1936 with memorial to the dead of the Great War.
From 1933 until the end of the regime, Burgplatz was called Adolf-Hitler-Platz; here the SA is being sworn in March 9, 1933 and another view from the north
 The hauptbahnhof before and during the war, and today

Evil is being revisited today thanks to the current chancellor's policies of unrestricted mass immigration forced upon the people she is supposed to represent and protect and Europe as an whole after at least four women were sexually assaulted by immigrant men of fighting age in a chilling echo of the New Year's Eve attacks. Police said the people who filed complaints could be "the tip of the iceberg."

Two 1937 postcards showing the Reichsschulungsburg den NSDAP
The Horst-Wessel-Halle, part of a school complex for the DAF designed by Julius Schulte-Frohlinde
The former Reichsschulungsburg der NSDAP und DAF
Despite being banned in all uses by the German government, the town still uses the Wolfsangel, symbol of the forbidden Jungen Front, in its Nazi-era arms which were approved by the Oldenburg Ministry of State for the Interior and have been used since 10 July 1934. 

NS Ordensburg Vogelsang 
Ordensburg Vogelsang is a former national socialist estate placed at the former military training area in the national park Eifel in North Rhine-Westphalia. The landmarked and completely preserved estate was used by the National Socialists between 1936 and 1939 as an educational centre for future leaders. Since 1 January 2006 the area is open to visitors. It is one of the largest architectural relics of National Socialism. The gross area of the landmarked buildings is 50,000 m². It remains an example of the rural version of 1930s Nazi herrschaftsarchitektur. Vogelsang was built by architect Clemens Klotz as a training centre for the young Nazi elite. It is situated on a terraced hillside above an artificial lake in the Eiffel nature reserve. Its design was based on the image of the feudal castle or "Ordensburg". In 1950 the British army generously offered Vogelsang to Belgium. In 2006 the military left and the complex was opened to the public. Plans are being made to turn the complex into a conference and exhibition centre, with proper respect for its historical significance.
Ordensburg Vogelsang
As might be expected, intellectual standards were very low and attendance to the Ordensburg did little to foster education. Students went to each of the four castles for a year at a time. At the academy at Krössinsee, the first year, the stress was on the study of racial science, athletics, boxing and gliding. Great attention was given to horse riding because that gave the Junkers the feeling of being able to dominate a living creature. The second year, at Sonthofen, the emphasis was on athletics, parachute jumping, mountain climbing and skiing. The third year, at Vogelsang, the students received political and military instruction, and physical training. One of the tests that year was the Tierkampf, combat with bare hands against wild dogs. The fourth year, at the prestigious Teutonic castle Marienburg, the Junkers were expected to obtain their final military formation, and political and racial indoctrination.
Jean-Denis G.G. Lepage, Hitler Youth, 1922-1945: An Illustrated History (97-98)
On the left, the building housed the female service staff whilst that on the right formed part of the complex called Forum East which contained at one time an auditorium and ballroom, dining hall and kitchens.
This is the water tower and high point of the complex, meant to resemble a castle keep. Below the reservoir a cult room was situated for use in Nazi ritual. The photo on the right shows the dormitories called Kameradschaftshauser.
The Burgschanke, left, a restaurant and banquet hall for the senior staff and on the right, so-called Eagle Square

Eagle on a wall above the Assembly Square
Most of the sculptures in Vogelsang - "Fackelträger" (torch bearer), "Der deutsche Mensch" (The German Man), "Adler" (Eagle) and the "Sportlerrelief" (sportsmen-relief) - were created by Willy Meller:
The white area next to "Fackelträger" (torch bearer) covers up references to Hitler which originally read: "Ihr seid die Fackelträger der Nation. Ihr tragt das Licht des Geistes voran im Kampfe für Adolf Hitler." (You are the torch bearers of the nation; You carry on the light of the spirit in the fight for Adolf Hitler.) The architect of the monument was Clemens Klotz (1886–1969), the statue was made by Willy Meller (1887–1974). On top of the monument a fire could be lit.

Sportlerrelief (sportsmen-relief)
Equestrian statue at the main gate and surviving reichsadler
In contrast with the Napolas, the castles were not linked with German military traditions, and the system failed miserably. The Ordensburgen never attracted a full complement of students despite the financial inducement and the prestige of attendance. According to some estimates, half the avail- able places remained vacant. Even in the most fanatical NSDAP circles, the product of the Ordensburgen were occasionally considered too ruthless and arrogant.
Remaining Nazi Sites in Westphalia (2)