Showing posts with label Reichsadler. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Reichsadler. Show all posts

Nazi Sites around Nuremberg town centre

excluding Nuremberg Party Rally Grounds (Reichsparteitagsgelände)
Nuremberg Castle then and now with Sinwell Tower in the middle left and Luginsland Tower in the far right. During the war, the castle was damaged in 1944-45, with only the Roman double chapel and the Sinwell Tower remaining entirely intact. After the war, the castle was restored under the direction of Rudolf Esterer and Julius Lincke to its historical form, including the Luginsland tower which had been completely destroyed.
Hitler's D-2600 above Nuremberg on the left from Triumph of the Will, taken from page 17 of Bilder aus dem Leben des Führers.
Clearly, Riefenstahl is deifying Hitler: the ‘plane in which Hitler is flying cuts through dark clouds; the clouds part, and sunlight streams through, silhouetting the crucifix-like shape of the ‘plane upon the ancient churches and houses of Nuremberg. Hitler descends, as a god from the sky, pushing aside the storm clouds of Germany’s problems, ready to give salvation, and enable Germans to inherit the earth. 
More screen shots of the town from the start of Triumph of the Will
William L. Shirer describes the 1934 Reichsparteitag des deutschen Volkes in Nüremberg as a pseudo-pentecostal event in which the masses viewed Adolf Hitler “as if he were Messiah, their faces transformed into something positively inhuman”  . Despite the official purpose of strengthening the liaison between the Nazi Party and the German people and exemplifying the “unfolding glory and power” of the Third Reich, the annual Nüremberg Rallies, as eminent historian Richard J. Overy claims, mainly served to foster Hitler’s cult of personality. Hitler desired the Nüremberg Rally of 1934 to be immortalised in recording and assigned his protégée, prominent filmmaker Leni Riefenstahl, the duty. The result was the groundbreaking masterpiece, Triumph des Willens, a motion picture that, despite its close association with Nazism, is still considered a keystone and “breathtaking” role model of modern cinema. Up to her death in 2003, Riefenstahl has consistently denied her alleged sympathy with the Nazi Party and has insisted that “Triumph of the Will” be regarded as a work of art rather than propaganda.  Every party rally was orchestrated thematically, yet the September 1934 Nüremberg Rally was the exception; only later, after Riefenstahl’s film, was it declared to be the “Rally of Power”. However, this Rally posed a challenge for the dictator : just three months earlier, Hitler had taken action against the Sturmabteilung (SA) and its leader, Ernst Röhm, in the infamous Night of the Long Knives, an operation involving at least 85 extra-judicial killings, spanning the 30th of June until the 2nd of July. Now, facing the entire Party, including the SA, as well as a crowd of several thousand civilians at the Nüremberg Rally, Hitler encountered the task of publicly rationalising Operation Hummingbird. This would suggest that his position as leader in 1934 was not as solid as commonly assumed. 
Triumph of the Will addresses the Night of the Long Knives through several significant details. It strikingly captures the grave moment Adolf Hitler walks through an immaculate formation of 150,000 ϟϟ and SA troops, flanked by Heinrich Himmler and Victor Lutze. The latter was the new appointed leader of the brown-shirts, having just replaced the defamed Ernst Röhm after Operation Hummingbird. Being his first official appearance as Stabschef, Lutze encountered an aura heavy with the suppressed memory of the Party’s recent exploits and the violent riddance of his predecessor. In his eye-witness account, William L. Shirer notes that “the SA boys received him coolly”. In one of the final scenes, Hitler holds a speech with references towards “unity” and “loyalty”, alluding to the reason for the Night of the Long Knives.  It is important to note that the planning and organisation for the 1934 Nüremberg Rally took into account the making of Triumph of the Will and was designed to allow effective filming, always bearing in mind the resolute goal of publicizing the event to the broader German public. For instance, her crew was ensured to have ruts and space for camera tracks. Therefore, to an extent, many of the visual arrangements were suited to the filming, making practicality a secondary concern.
Pankraz Labenwolf's Gänsemännchenbrunnen, or Goose Man fountain, makes an appearance in Triumph of the Will and as it appears today. It was created around 1550 and is one of Nuremberg’s oldest fountains featuring a bronze figure of a farmer holding a goose under each arm with water coming out of their beaks. Before 1945 the fountain was located in the goose market but now is located in a courtyard behind the town hall. This brings to mind the complaint made by Nuremberg’s Head of Tourism and Marketing, Michael Weber, that three linkages – laws, rallies and trials – define the city for many foreigners in particular: ‘They always want to know, show me the place of the trials, where the laws were announced and where Hitler used to stand.’ 
As he was also keen to point out, however, these were not the only Nurembergs. Long dubbed ‘Germany’s treasure chest’ (Deutschlands Schatzkästlein), the city has been a significant tourist destination since the mid-nineteenth century, visitors coming to see its beautiful churches, fountains, walled Old Town, medieval castle and the important collections in the Germanic national museum. Although much of the Old Town was destroyed during the War, many of the notable buildings have since been painstakingly reconstructed as part of Germany’s postwar heritage movement. Nuremberg is also famous for its Christmas market, its toy-making, gingerbread, and sausages. Indeed, a visitor survey from the 1980s that Michael Weber gave to me showed clearly that for most German visitors these were more significant associations than the Nazi heritage. In response to the question ‘What comes into your mind when you hear the name Nuremberg?’, while foreign tourists (of whom the majority were Americans) almost all mentioned trials, laws and rallies as the primary associations, fewer than 5 per cent of German visitors mentioned anything to do with the Nazi period. Instead, their associations were Butzenscheiben (little bull’s eye glass window- panes), Bratwürste (sausages), Lebküchen (gingerbread) and the Christkindlesmarkt (Christmas market). In other words, all things which Michael Weber described as ‘small and cute’ (klein und niedlich), an image that he also thought problematic for a modern dynamic city.

Nuremberg old town as seen in Triumph of the Will during the 1934 Party Rally, left, and amateur colour footage filmed at the 1938 Nazi Party Congress in Nuremberg.
 Although the city had been practically obliterated during the war, many of the landmarks scene in this clip can still be identified as shown below.
Links to archival footage:
90% of the city had been bombed to nothing after the war, as these photos before and after the war  show. What is seen now by the visitor is a marvel of reconstruction. Nuremberg was one of the frequent targets of Allied air raids during the war, severely damaging the city. On January 2, 1945, the Nuremberg Old Town was almost completely destroyed. Also in the five-day battle of Nuremberg in April 1945, most historic buildings were destroyed. After the war, there were actually considerations to completely abandon the ruined city and rebuild it elsewhere as food shortages and a lack of housing prevailed in the city. Of the 134,000 homes before the war, only 14,500 remained undamaged. Martin Treu and Hans Ziegler were appointed by the American military government in July 1945 to serve as the new Lord Mayors of the city. At the beginning of 1948 an architectural competition was decided to rebuild the largely destroyed city according to development plans by Heinz Schmeißner and Wilhelm Schlegtendal. In 1949, the German Building Exhibition took place in Nuremberg under the motto "Wir müssen bauen"- "We must build". During the reconstruction, most people oriented themselves on the historical city structures, so that they are still legible in many places despite the predominantly destroyed building fabric. As seen in the GIF at the top of this page, the roofscape has again been formed similar to the pre-war state. Many important church buildings were also largely reconstructed, as well as buildings along the later historic mile as the Reichsburg. Important townhouses such as the Toplerhaus and the Pellerhaus or the buildings on the Hauptmarkt were either not or only partially rebuilt as will be seen below.
 Bergstraße on the left then and now and the Reichsparteitag of 1937, looking down the same street from the castle.

  Tiergärtnertor and Ludwigstor bedecked in swastikas and today. The Ludwigstor was a gate through the Nuremberg city wall and is today one of the main entrances to the south-west of Nuremberg's old town.
 Obere Talgasse in 1935 on the left and Innere Laufer Gasse below showing the Laufer Schlagturm before, after the war and today.
As the formerly objective newspaper The New York Times of April 8, 1984 put it, 
 What Nuremberg was, and represented, crumbled in the shambles and cinders of its red sandstone and half-timbered houses the night of Jan. 2, 1945, when 525 British Lancaster bombers took to the air from dozens of bases in England. Their target was as much strategic and tactical as it was symbolic, for Nuremberg was a vital rail and industrial center as well as the most Germanic of all cities and the ideological epicenter of the Nazi Reich. No other city, with the exception of Dresden six weeks later, was so totally devastated in a single raid during the war.

As Jeffry M. Diefendorf put it in his "Urban Reconstruction in Europe After World War II", the task of rebuilding after the war was huge:

 In 1945, a great many of the cities of Europe lay in ruins. Some were the victims of long bombing campaigns conducted by both sides; some were damaged in the course of fighting between ground forces. The destruction was most widespread in Germany, where Allied bombers had rained high explosives and incendiary bombs on urban centres for more than three years, but large-scale destruction had also occurred in most of the other countries that had participated in the war. Cultural monuments that had stood for centuries had been reduced to rubble, and, in practical terms, the loss of masses of housing, schools, hospitals, transportation facilities and the like posed an immediate threat to the very survival of these urban centres. Observers in the summer of 1945, horrified at what they saw as 'biblical annihilation', expected that it would take generations to rebuild.
Horst Wessel leading SA troops in front of the main train station
 In front of the station and how it appeared before the war. Up to 1.3 million visitors used the station during the 1938 Nazi Party Rally of September 5-12 in which the theme was the celebration of that year's anschluss. In some cases, it took intervals of 80 seconds to clear the platforms during which time between arrival and departure, special trains were parked in parking lots that were up to 400 kilometres away from Nuremberg, such as in Dresden.

 Hitler and Himmler reviewing the Leibstandarte-ϟϟ Adolf Hitler at the start of the eighth Party Congress, known as the "Rally of Honour" (Reichsparteitag der Ehre) which took place from September 8–14, 1936. Hitler himself had come up with the title, which he thought would emphasise that through the remilitarisation of the Rhineland in March that year the restoration of German honour in the eyes of many Germans had been achieved. The Leibstandarte-ϟϟ Adolf Hitler (LSSAH) began as Hitler's personal bodyguard, responsible for guarding the Führer's person, offices, and residences. Initially the size of a regiment, the LSSAH eventually grew into an elite division-sized unit during the war.  It participated in combat during the invasion of Poland, and was amalgamated into the Waffen-ϟϟ together with the ϟϟ-Verfügungstruppe (ϟϟ-VT) and the combat units of the ϟϟ-Totenkopfverbände  prior to Operation Barbarossa in 1941. By mid-1942 it had been increased in size from a regiment to a Panzergrenadier division and was designated ϟϟ Panzergrenadier Division "Leibstandarte ϟϟ Adolf Hitler". It received its final form as a Panzer division in October 1943. Members of the LSSAH perpetrated numerous atrocities and war crimes, including the Malmedy massacre. They killed an estimated five thousand prisoners of war in the period 1940–1945, mostly on the Eastern Front.

The main railway station before the war and today. With the exception of the Art Nouveau hall, the station building was badly damaged by the air raids on Nuremberg towards the end of the war and was shut down for nine days from March 16, 1945. The reconstruction took place between 1945 and 1956 and had to be done in a simplified form as seen here due to lack of money. A cinema was integrated inside as an innovation. In 1973, construction work for the subway began under the main station, for which the central hall was gutted and placed on stilts. Between 1976 and 1984 new platform roofs were installed and the platforms on tracks 1 to 15 were raised to 76 centimetres above rail level. The construction of the third dome and the central hall began in 1977. On April 2, 1984 the restaurant, which had been built in 1906, was finally reopened, covering an area of ​​390 m² and eight meters in height. It's since been closed down and the entire interior reworked. The intermediate floors of the station have now been opened to the public and the whole area turned into a shopping mall. Eventually plans were even drawn up for the overall conversion, but these were never realised. With over 210,000 travellers a day, the station is the ninth most frequented long-distance train station on the German railways.
Another Nazi-era building on the Bahnhofplatz- the post office, with the Nazi eagle on the corner long removed. In fact, since I last visited the entire building had been demolished in spring 2018. It had been located next to Nuremberg's main train station and was originally built as a senior post office; here the western, so-called "head building" of the main post office is seen. The first post office building on the site was built in 1861 and located on the site of the current property at Bahnhofsplatz 1. This building was completed by 1931, designed by Oberpostbaurat Johann Kohl who had designed the building consistently in the New Objectivity style, as advocated by the Munich Postbauschule. The eight-story high-rise was to have a strictly cubic silhouette with a basic, modern steel skeleton. According to the original planning, simple curtain walls with large transverse rectangular windows were to be superimposed on this. A closed bridge was planned as a direct connection to the neighbouring main station.
When the Nazis took power in 1933, the steel frame of the front building was largely complete. Since the building was located in an important urban location - the station square - the newly appointed Gauleiter Julius Streicher, a declared enemy of the New Building, had Kohl's plans summarily changed leading to architect Max Kälberer adding high arched arcades to the ground floor, provided the facades with a cladding made of sandstone slabs that matched the environment and put a steep, hipped roof on the building. Reliefs related to the history of Deutsche Post and the sculpture of a seated Nazi eagle at the corner of the building towards the station square completed the ideologically-motivated revision of the original plan. In 1935 the construction work was completed. Up until 1994, the mail for Nuremberg was sorted here and then delivered. During the Second World War, the head building was damaged by aerial bombing. Reconstruction under the direction of Anton Ebner began in 1947 through which the supporting steel structure was partially renewed. The external appearance of the front building was a combination of the original plan by Johann Kohl with the changes made by Max Kälberer in 1933: the arcades on the ground floor and the sandstone cladding of the facades were restored without reliefs and eagle figures. The roof was rebuilt but with a lesser slope as seen in my GIF. Ebner adopted the division of windows from Johann Kohl's design of 1931. The front building of the Nuremberg main post office was therefore an interesting example of how the reconstruction combined the architecture of National Socialism with the New Objectivity of the Weimar Republic. As a symbol of democracy, the latter shaped the style of post-war German architecture for decades. 
However, in the course of the privatisation of the post office in the 1990s, the main post office was largely abandoned. In the years that followed, techno parties were held in the rotunda as an interim use whilst he branch in the head building, where Deutsche Post AG and Postbank offered their services, remained in place. In 2013, the owner, Aurelis Real Estate, announced that new users were being sought for the largely vacant building and the next year Munich investor Hubert Haupt Immobilien acquired the post office premises. The company intended to renovate the circular building, which is a listed building, but in the end only the facades and the historic stairwells ended up being preserved despite the resistance provided by the Altstadtfreunde Nürnberg and other groups. Despite such activism, the completion of the new ensemble, the atrocious so-called Tafelhof Palais, was completed in 2021.

Deutscher Hof
Like a Roman emperor Hitler rode into this medieval town at sundown today past solid phalanxes of wildly cheering Nazis who packed the narrow streets that once saw Hans Sachs and the Meistersinger. Tens of thousands of Swastika flags blot out the Gothic beauties of the place, the faces of the old houses, the gabled roofs. The streets, hardly wider than alleys, are a sea of brown and black uniforms. I got my first glimpse of Hitler as he drove by our hotel, the Württemberger Hof, to his headquarters down the street at the Deutscher Hof, a favourite old hotel of his, which has been remodelled for him... Later I pushed my way into the lobby of the Deutscher Hof. I recognized Julius Streicher, whom they call here the Uncrowned Czar of Franconia. In Berlin he is known more as the number-one Jew-baiter and editor of the vulgar and pornographic anti-Semitic sheet the Stürmer. His head was shaved and this seemed to augment the sadism of his face. As he walked about, he brandished a short whip. 
William L. Shirer, Berlin Diary, September 4 1934 entry
This is the hotel at Frauentorgraben 29 where Hitler always stayed whilst in Nuremberg, in suite 105. It was whilst he was about to leave after one such stay on September 18, 1931 that Hitler received a phone call from Rudolf Hess telling him that his niece Geli, his constant companion for the past six years, had killed herself in her room at his new Munich apartment in Munich. He then rushed back to Munich during which time he had been stopped by the police for speeding.  Later when in power Hitler would use the site for meetings and receptions during the rallies. 
On February 11, 1935 Hitler delivered an address in the Deutscher Hof on the occasion of Gauleiter Julius Streicher’s birthday. For Streicher, the Hitler explained, it certainly must be an uplifting feeling that his 50th birthday marked not only the turning point of a century but also of a millennium of German history. In Streicher he felt confident of having a man in Nuremberg who never wavered for a second and stood behind him unerringly in every situation. Three days later in the evening, Robert Ley presented the working masses to Hitler in their new blue uniforms in front of the building. As with the other organisation leaders, Ley wanted his own private guard and had not rested until the German Labour Front could don its uniforms and march in formation—much to the irritation of the militant party units.  
Hitler held a diplomatic reception in the Deutscher Hof on September 10, 1937 when, for the first time, ambassadors from France and Great Britain were among the guests. In his address, Hitler stressed “that the Reich Party Congress was not a political Party event, but a national celebration of the entire German Volk and to be seen as such.” The next day he invited his foreign guests for tea at the hotel, among whom included a delegation of Turkish businessmen, led by State Secretary Kurtoglu, as well as several Iranian and Afghan economists. The following year on September 6 in the afternoon Hitler held a reception for the diplomatic corps; even the representative of Czechoslovakia attended. The only states that were still missing were the Vatican and the Soviet Union. Hitler gave a welcoming address in which he pointed out that increasing numbers of heads of diplomatic missions were now participating in the Nazi Party Congresses. In response, the French Ambassador François-Poncet expressed the gratitude of the diplomatic corps.
On the right a troop of Hitler Youth marches past Hitler and from the same vantage point today; this part of the hotel had been considerably remodelled as seen below where I stand in front of both entrances. 

Standing in front of the Deutscher Hof whilst cycling through.
At what had been the Adolf Hitler Youth Hostel. The tower behind me, built in 1377, is said to have been the gaol for Kaspar Hauser. The youth hostel, which is now housed in the imperial stables of Nuremberg Castle, was set up during the Nazi era. The idea of ​​setting up youth hostels actually comes from Germany and goes back to the beginning of the 20th century. During the Third Reich, the "German Youth Hostel Association" (DJH) was incorporated into the Hitler Youth (HJ). It is therefore in keeping with the idea that youth hostels were to be built using regional and traditional materials and forms to prevent them from becoming architecturally foreign bodies, but blend in with the respective landscape ("Heimatstil"). Unlike before 1933, however, youth hostels were now built primarily for mass use.During the the 1930s Hitler requested that this site be used for accommodation for as many as 450 'young hikers.' This led to portions of the castle complex into an immense youth hostel with facilities for Hitler Youth leaders. The local administration hoped that the newly renovated hostel would immerse youths in the experience of the party rallies, optimistically proclaiming that 'thousands of German boys and girls will pass through it [the hostel] and take something of the spirit of greatness that prevails in it into their future life'. 

Gästehaus der NSDAP
The Party Guest House was completed in time for the 1936 Nuremberg Party Rally. Hermann Göring stayed here for this and subsequent rallies. Standing directly across from the train station in 2007, it is little changed.
Standing in front of the town hall. The Party Congress of 1934 opened here with a reception on September 4. The following year Hitler had been presented here with a replica of the old German imperial sword. The Party Congress of 1936 saw Hitler stating at the rathaus that that year had been “the most difficult year of my own historic role;” the film Festliches Nürnberg incorporated footage shot at this rally, as well as the rally of 1937.
After the 1944 and 1945 bomb attacks during the air raids on Nuremberg, the entire town hall complex burned down to the surrounding walls. It was not until 1956-1962 under the direction of Harald Clauß that the Old Town Hall was rebuilt over the ruins. The Old Town Hall was restored on the inside only between 1982 and 1985, including wall panelling and the coffered wooden tonneau ceiling. Because the photo documentation of the interior wall paintings by the workshop of Albrecht Dürer crafted according to his designs was lost, the painter Michael Mathias Prechtl was commissioned with a draft for a contemporary painting. After a long, controversial and bitter discussion Prechtl withdrew his design in 1988 leaving the walls white.
Given the dual importance of Nuremberg's main market square, as both the city's historical centre and site of several parades and activities during the annual rallies, local leaders decided to focus their initial efforts here. They began by renaming the square, originally called the Hauptmarkt, to Adolf-Hitler-Platz , but it was soon evident that they would not be satisfied with mere semantic changes. During late 1933 and early 1934, more substantive measures were undertaken to have a redesigned and improve Adolf-Hitler-Platz complete for the 1934 rallies. In addition to targeting modern architecture, officials worked to realign  doors to harmonise the façades of buildings surrounding the square to conform to Nazi visual and ideological preferences.
Cultural Geographies, Vol. 13, No. 2 (April 2006) (167)

The Frauenkirche is one of the few buildings still intact after the Second World War. This bustling square in the heart of the Altstadt is the site of daily markets as well as the famous Christkindlesmarkt. At the eastern end is the ornate Gothic Pfarrkirche Unsere Liebe Frau, also known as simply the Frauenkirche. The work of Prague cathedral builder Peter Parler, it remains the oldest Gothic hall church in Bavaria and stands on the ground of Nuremberg's first synagogue.  The western façade is beautifully ornamented and is where, every day at noon, crowds crane their necks to witness a spectacle called Männleinlaufen. It features seven figures, representing electoral princes, parading clockwise three times around Emperor Karl IV.  It was this emperor who, in 1349, ordered the destruction of the Jewish quarter to make the area into a market place: there was a pogrom and 562 of the 1500 Jews were burnt alive. In Triumph of the Will, Leni Riefenstahl's 1935 propaganda film about the 1934 Nuremberg Rally, the final scene consists of a military parade through downtown Nuremberg, with Adolf Hitler shown receiving salutes from Nazi troops with the Frauenkirche in the background.
The Frauenkirche providing the backdrop for the 1933 Party Rally left and 1935.
The centrepiece of the effort was the renovation of the Telegraph Building. Heinrich Höhn, a staff member of the German National Museum in Nuremberg, singled out this neo-gothic building, built in the 1870s, as an 'unbearable foreign body' that disturbed the square's medieval charm. Although cost considerations prevented its complete demolition, the Telegraph Building receive a dramatic facelift. The building's new simplified façade and pitched roof aimed to complement neighbouring structures and create a more orderly aesthetic, while new anti-Semitic murals added to the façade provided an unmistakable message. 
The American Army by the time of Hitler's birthday, April 20, 1945 and the church today with its Männleinlaufen still ringing in noon.

The church in 1945 and 1946. The building was repaired from 1989-1991. A Star of David with the year "1349" was placed in the choir floor to commemorate the pogrom against the Jewish settlement on the main market in 1349. The outer west facadewas further renovated in 2003.

Opposite the Frauenkirche is a replica of the Schöner Brunnen (Beautiful Fountain) which dates from around 1385 and now stored in the Germanisches Nationalmuseum); the wife in the centre is spinning one of the two brass rings embedded in the fence surrounding the fountain which is said to bring good luck.On the right is Hitler's supposed painting of it. During the Second World War the fountain was wrapped in a concrete coat and survived the bombardment intact.
Hitler and Röhm beside the Schöner Brunnen in Victory of Faith; the photo on the right shows Leni Riefenstahl on the ground as she tries to capture a dramatic angle for the film. Riefenstahl used techniques such as camera angles and clear sky backgrounds to bestow on the Führer a superhuman, larger-than-life quality. However, it is important to note that the Nüremberg Party Rally of 1934 was organised bearing in the mind the making of the film and that therefore, the itinerary of the event was adapted to suit the filming. Whether Triumph of the Will should be viewed as a documentary, a work of art or a piece of propaganda is matter of debate. These different stances have an effect on its suitability and value as a historical source. The Wagnerist music, aptly matching the ideology, appeals to the viewers’ emotions and thus poses an obstacle to the objective interpretation of the Rally. The fact that there are only shots of crowds, not of individuals (with the exception of Party officials) further presses the ideological concept of a homogenous population showing wholehearted support for the Nazis, classifying the film, although not official propaganda, as a work with National Socialist sympathies. Riefenstahl had some of the official speakers reenact their speeches in studios when the cut during the actual Rally was not suitable. This indicates that the Riefenstahl did not attempt to portray the Rally as it happened, but had artistic priorities. It is not useful to a historian wishing to learn about the nature of the speeches at the event itself. Regardless of this however, Triumph of the Will is useful as evidence of how the Nazi Party portrayed itself to the broad German public, as well as the world outside of Germany. 
SA troops parading past Hitler with Sebaldus church in the background during the Reichsparteitag der NSDAP of September 10-16, 1935. In the car with Hitler is the Blutfahne; Jakob Grimminger, carrier of the Blutfahne flag, is behind. It was at this rally that the Congress of the Nazi Party convened in Nuremberg, Germany, on September 10, 1935, to discuss passage of laws to clarify the requirements of citizenship in the Third Reich, to promote and protect the “purity of German blood and honour,” and to define the position of Jews in the Reich.
The Jews' Sow, an example of antisemitic propaganda used by the authorities to ostracise the Jewish minority and still allowed to adorn the church. In 2003 Wolfram Kastner sprayed the slogan 'Judensau' (Jewish Pig) on the church façade to protest the continuing display of this obscenity and to prompt the church to place a sign explaining the meaning of the sculpture.
The Nuremberg Laws codified what had been the general but unofficial measures taken against Jews in Germany in 1935. Two principal laws were enacted by the Reichstag (parliament) on September 15, 1935, which, along with various ancillary laws that followed them, were collectively called, in full, the Nuremberg Laws on Citizenship and Race. The laws actually grew out of a debate over the economic effects of Nazi Party actions against Jews. It was decided that the party would cease such actions once the Reich had formulated a firm official policy against the Jews. The policy, embodied in the Nuremberg Laws, was hastily drawn up—so hastily that, because there was a shortage of regular stationery, some portions of the text of the laws were drafted on menu cards. The first major law, called the Law for the Protection of German Blood and German Honour, prohibited marriage as well as extramarital sexual intercourse between Jews and Germans. The law also barred the employment of German females under 45 years of age in Jewish households.
The second major law, the Reich Citizenship Law, summarily stripped Jews of German citizenship, introducing a new distinction between “Reich citizens” and “Reich nationals”—the Jewish Germans to be included in the latter category.

 Königsstraße bedecked with Nazi flags with the Lorenzkirche in the background. It was in this church that Nazi flags were formally blessed by the church for the first time on August 1, 1926. On that day the church had been adorned with swastikas, including the altar. The service was attended by between 250 and three hundred SA men in brown and ϟϟ men in black uniforms; the first time a Nuremberg church had pledged to solicit God's blessing on the anti-Semitic "Hitlerites". At this consecration ceremony was the future Frankenführer Julius Streicher although it is unknown whether or not Hitler himself, who was in Nuremberg on that day, had participated in the service as well. Martin Weigel delivered the ordination sermon, in which he linked the swastika and Christian cross:  "It's fair to say that the new flags made their first trip to the venerable cathedral. They are a symbol of the holiest the German wears in his breast. Only when all this fits in with the great connections of German power and German piety into which this cathedral puts us, then powerfully penetrates from the hearts to the throne of God, that he put the sunshine of his blessing around these flags. It is the magnates of the god Mammon who decide on the weal and woe of the peoples. Shall our people perish among these evil spirits? Or should it fight for his mind, for his soul?"
Up until the Second World War, Nuremberg was the only major city in Germany in which the historic city centre and its fortifications had remained almost unchanged. Aware of this outstanding cultural and art-historical importance, measures were taken to rescue and faithfully restore the most important buildings even before the destruction. In the end, only ten percent of the building mass survived the bombing unscathed. During the reconstruction, the city of Nuremberg decided, unlike most other German cities of the time, to preserve the structure of the old town and managed to integrate the valuable historical building fabric into an appropriate newer context. Therefore, the old town is not only a testimony to the Middle Ages and early modern times, but also to the reconstruction and modernity.
The Lorenzkirche after the war and today. The church was badly damaged during the Second World War and later restored remaining one of the most prominent churches of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Bavaria.
The Apollo-Theater and Zeughaus on Pfannenschmiedsgasse before and after the war and today. The Apollo Theatre was opened on July 11, 1896. It was located at Pfannenschmiedsgasse 22 and was known as a variety show far beyond Nuremberg's borders. It was founded by Johann Baptist Zetlmeier, who had it built next to his Hotel Wittelsbach. The Apollo was destroyed during the war as seen in the photo below, but its name lived on until 1996 in the form of a cinema in the Vorderen Sterngasse. In the afternoon of September 5, 1934 Hitler delivered his customary speech at the Culture Convention in the Apollo Theatre during the party rallies, commenting above all on the nature of artistic genius. The next year on September 13 he spoke to the Foreign Organisation of the Nazi Party again at the Nuremberg Apollo Theatre, giving  another speech before the NS Frauenschaft in which he offered glowing words of praise for the female party members who had actually demonstrated an unparalleled devotion to their Führer in the early years following the collapse of 1923. Hitler also assured his audience that he would never send “but a single woman to the front” in the event of war and that he would be ashamed to be German, were such a thing ever to come to pass. He concluded how marvellous it was to live in such a great age and voiced some thoughts on his own inevitable demise:
The site after the war
Thus I believe that it is a marvelous thing after all to live in such an age and to lend a helping hand at one point or another. When I am one day forced to finish this life, my final conviction will be: it was not in vain. It was good, because it was a life of fighting, a life of struggle; because it was a life of work towards an ideal which often seemed so distant and which many a man believed would never be attained. We have reached our goal! That applies to all of you who are fighting with us here. No German generation will be happier in the end than ours. We have experienced infinite hardships. And the fact that we have succeeded in overcoming them and that we will succeed ever better in overcoming them—that is such a wonderful thing that all of us, men and women alike, can be proud and happy and will also be proud and happy one day. The time will come when you will all think back with proud joy on these years of struggling and fighting for this new Germany. Then it will be your most treasured memory that, as German women, you helped wage the battle for our German Volk in this great age of the German renascence and uprising.
Pfannenschmiedsgasse has completely changed since the war
The Nürnberg Polizeipräsidium in 1942 and today, this time relocated to Jakobsplatz with the Franconian eagle
The Heilig-Geist-Spital seen from the Museumsbrücke spanning the river Pegnitz to connect the Marktplatz with the Church of St. Lawrence.

Albrecht Dürer Haus
During the Nazi era and today
Postcards of the Albrecht Dürer House in Nuremberg regularly portrayed the structure festooned in swastika flags, but the postcards of the Goethe House presented a building seemingly untouched by the passage of time. All in all, the Goethe sites conveyed an image of Goethe and an interpretation of his life and work that was not overtly Nazified. The visitors who arrived by the thousands thus experienced the house and the museum just as visitors had done for decades.
Heinrich Mann in Ein Zeitalter wird besichtigt would write how "Nuremberg - Albrecht Dürer was never great there, all the fame of the city was stolen by a party unknown to the muses, until explosives from the air disrupted their customs." Despite severe damage, the Dürer House survived the almost complete destruction of Nuremberg's old town at the end of the war surprisingly well. It was made accessible to the public again in 1949, before the large town churches, the town hall and the town library. The house received a modern extension on the west side in 1971 for the large anniversary exhibition on the occasion of Albrecht Dürer's 500th birthday. Its core is a large exhibition room, which was used as a cinema in 1996.
A tour to the Second World War bunkers starts here at Dürerplatz. There is a four storey passageway under the Albrecht Dürer Platz called “Felsengänge” and was burrowed into the sandstone in the 14th century. The passageway was used as a shelter during the war. Here on February 9, 2019 there was a special Adolf Hitler auction scheduled in the Weidler auction house in Dürerplatz. According to its catalogue, thirty-one drawings and watercolour paintings which are either signed "A. Hitler" or "Adolf Hitler" were offered there. The minimum bids are between 130 euros for the charcoal drawing “monastery in the vineyard” to 45,000 euros for the watercolour painting “Village on a Foothill lake”. The problem of course is that the number of paintings attributed to Hitler runs into the hundreds; between 1909 to 1918 he is supposed to have created 2000 to 3000 works, requiring someone known to be lazy to have painted at least a picture a day since becoming a self-described ‘painter’ in the 56 months between 1909 and August 1914, when he joined the Bavarian army. During the war, even though he was rarely present on the battlefront, he had other things to do and certainly didn’t have the necessary amounts of paper to make a lot of drawings and watercolour paintings.
Formerly an impressive late Renaissance building built 1602-05 by the architect Jakob Wolff the Elder, the building was bombed during an air raid on Nuremberg on October 3, 1944 and completely destroyed in the attack of the Royal Air Force on January 2, 1945 completely although a part of the ground floor with the entrance hall, stair tower, cellar as well as large parts of the arcade yard remained preserved. It has since been replaced by the monstrosity shown in the background. Drake Winston is standing under the surviving statue of Philipp Melanchthon who opened the oldest humanistic grammar school in Germany in 1526. On the right is the much better preserved Nassauer Haus even though it had been badly hit hard in American bombing raids in 1945. The roof and the top floor with two of the three turrets ended up being largely destroyed and the upper floors burned out; only the left turret is original. Reconstruction took place between 1950 and 1954 in a restoration conducted by Rudo Göschel on behalf of the Schlüsselfeld Family Foundation, which is still the owner today. The coat of arms frieze was also largely renewed with fragments of the original parts are still in the tower.
Hitler's supposed painting of the Hangman's Bridge (Henkersteg), constructed in 1457 as a wooden bridge. Between the 16th and the 19th century, the Nuremberg hangman lived in the tower and the roofed walk above the river Pegnitz. After the flood of 1595, three arches of the town wall bridging the southern arm of the river Pegnitz were demolished and replaced by the wooden Hangman's Bridge with its tiled roof. It was reconstructed in 1954 after almost entirely destroyed during the war.

Luftschutzschule Hermann Göring

During its inauguration and today, derelict 

Another Nazi-era school at Regenbogenstraße 73 with façade dating from 1935

Julius Streicher's Gauhaus
Standing at the former headquarters at Marienplatz 5 of the Nazi Party in Nuremberg, and of Gauleiter Julius Streicher, Nazi leader of Franconia. Julius Streicher had received the property from the city on his fiftieth birthday on which the building was later built. Streicher was the founder and publisher of the extremely crude and vulgar Der Stürmer 'newspaper', and his publishing firm also produced three anti-Semitic books for children, including one of the most widespread pieces of propaganda, the 1938 Der Giftpilz (The Poison Mushroom), which purported to warn about insidious dangers Jews posed by using the metaphor of an attractive yet deadly mushroom. After the war, he was convicted of crimes against humanity and executed. Controversially so, for his execution went against the idea of freedom of speech, Streicher not having been involved in waging or planning war.
The Gauhaus in flames in this American Army Signal Corps photograph on the left taken on April 27, 1945. The Reich eagle is visible through the smoke.

The name of a newspaper, the Nürnberger Nachrichten, replaces the eagle and swastika on the façade whilst the back of the building is one of the only remaining examples of original Nazi relief, depicting National Socialism fighting the Weimar Republic and Jews- Wilhelm Nida-Rümelin's Drachentöter (Dragon Slayer). During the Nazi era Nida-Rümelin received public commissions and was one of "Hitler's artists" which included Arno Breker, Josef Thorak and others. After his retirement on October 1, 1941, he worked again in Munich, where he rented the large studio in the Hildebrandhaus on Maria-Theresia-Strasse 23 (now Siebertstraße 2) in Bogenhausen to work on the famous Hildebrand until his suicide on May 14, 1945. According to Joe F. Bodenstein, this was deliberately kept secret by his descendants: "Wilhelm Nida-Rümelin fell into oblivion after 1945 because his descendants obviously deliberately suppressed and kept silent about the artist's work during the Nazi era."
Near where I live the war memorial in Ismaning is acknowledged as an early work by Nida-Rümelin. It was erected in the Weimar Republic on May 24, 1924 on the occasion of the fiftieth anniversary of the local veterans 'and warriors' association. At that time, the memorial commemorated an hundred men from the community who lost their lives in the Great War. After the war, Mayor Erich Zeitler ensured that memorial plaques were installed for a total of 181 killed and 89 missing from the war.
Compare with Der Racher (The Avenger) from Hitler's favourite sculptor, Arno Breker.

Nuremberg trials court building

Standing in front of the site of the Nuremberg war crimes trials. It is still a working court building, so tourist hours are limited to weekends. In parallel with denazification at the municipal level, the Nuremberg trials against leading war criminals of the National Socialist dictatorship took place in the Justizpalast on Fürtherstrasse from November 1945 onwards. Since the Palace of Justice with the adjoining prison had survived the war largely unscathed, Nuremberg was chosen instead of Berlin as a place of trial, especially since Nuremberg as a city of the Nazi rallies had a similar symbolic importance as the capital or Munich.
It was here behind the large windows that the International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg was convened pursuant to the London Agreement of August 8, 1945, which included a charter, signed by representatives from Britain, the US, the USSR, and the provisional government of France, for a military tribunal to try major Axis war criminals on four possible counts: crimes against peace (the planning, instigation, and waging of wars of aggression in violation of international treaties and agreements), crimes against humanity (exterminations, deportations, and genocide), war crimes (violations of the accepted laws and international conventions of war), and conspiracy to commit any or all of the criminal acts listed in the first three counts. As these offences had no particular or specific geographic location. Subsequently, 19 other nations accepted the tribunal provisions of the agreement.
The tribunal was made up of a member (and an alternate) selected by each of the four principal signatory countries. The first session was convened under the presidency of General I. T. Nikitchenko on October 18, 1945, in Berlin when 24 former Nazi leaders were charged with war crimes, and various groups (including the Gestapo) were charged as being criminal in character. After this first session, all others, beginning on November 20, 1945, were held in Nuremberg under the presidency of Lord Justice Geoffrey Lawrence, the British member.
On the left is the bench where the accused sat. It was expanded during the trial, so it looks a bit smaller now. The video shows the October 17, 1946 U.S. Newsreel of the Nuremberg Trials Sentencing when, at the conclusion of 216 court sessions, the verdicts on 22 of the original 24 defendants were handed down. One defendant, Robert Ley, had committed suicide whilst in gaol, and the aged Gustav Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach, the great German arms manufacturer, was judged mentally and physically unfit to stand trial. Of the 22 tried, three, Hjalmar Schacht, Franz von Papen, and Hans Fritzsche, were acquitted; four, Karl Dönitz, Baldur von Schirach, Albert Speer, and Konstantin von Neurath, were sentenced to 10 to 20 years in prison; three, Rudolf Hess, Walther Funk, and Erich Raeder, were sentenced to life imprisonment; and 12 were sentenced to be hanged. Of these, ten—Hans Frank, Wilhelm Frick, Julius Streicher, Alfred Rosenberg, Ernst Kaltenbrunner, Joachim von Ribbentrop, Fritz Sauckel, Alfred Jodl, Wilhelm Keitel, and Arthur Seyss-Inquart—were executed on October 16, 1946. Martin Bormann was tried and condemned to death in absentia, and Hermann Göring committed suicide before sentence could be carried out.
Courtroom 600 in 1945 and today

The judges and the accused; the seats the latter sat on today. Defendants had the right to receive a copy of the indictment, to offer an explanation or defence, to be represented by legal counsel, and to confront and cross-examine all witnesses brought against them.
The tribunal established certain enduring principles of international law, including those embodied in the rejection of the chief defences offered by the defendants. The tribunal rejected the contention that only a state, and not individuals, could be found guilty of war crimes. The court concluded that only by holding individuals to account for committing such crimes could international law be enforced. The tribunal also rejected the defence that the trial as well as its adjudication were ex post facto. All acts of which the defendants were found guilty, the tribunal held, had been universally regarded as criminal prior to World War II which created a precedent for subsequent war crimes trials relating to World War II as well as subsequent conflicts.
Standing in front of the Arabella Sheraton Hotel on Eilgutstraße 15, formerly the Fränkischer Hof, which had originally mostly accommodated the press during Party Rallies.
This Nazi shield with its swastika somewhat intact was reinstalled in the front of this hotel, having originally come from the Fränkischer Hof shown below which shows it and the three other shields high above the entrance.
CULTURAL CENTRES Amerika Haus (%230 690; Gleissbühlstrasse 13) Impressive range of cultural and artistic programmes each month. EMERGENCY Ambulance (%192 22) INTERNET ACCESS Netzkultur (%211 0782; Färberstrasse 11, 3rd fl; per hr €3; h10am-1am Mon-Sat) LAUNDRY Schnell und Sauber (%180 9400; per load €4; h6am-midnight) East (Sulzbacher Strasse 86; tram 8 to Deichslerstrasse); South (Allersberger Strasse 89; tram 4, 7 or 9 to Schweiggerstrasse); West (Schwabacher Strasse 86; U2 to St Leonhard) MEDICAL SERVICES Full-service hospitals close to the Altstadt: Poliklinik (%192 92; Kesslerplatz 5) Unfallklinik Dr Erler (%272 80; Kontumazgarten 4-18) MONEY Commerzbank (Königstrasse 21) Hypovereinsbank (Königstrasse 3) Reisebank (Hauptbahnhof ) POST Main post office (Bahnhofplatz 1) TOURIST INFORMATION Tourist offices (%233 60; www.tourismus.nuernberg .de) Königstrasse (Königstrasse 93; h9am-7pm Mon- Sat); Hauptmarkt (Hauptmarkt 18; h9am-6pm Mon-Fri, 10am-4pm Sun May-Sep, 9am-7pm Mon-Sat & 10am- 7pm during Christkindlesmarkt) Staff sell the Nürnberg + Fürth Card (€18), good for two days of unlimited public transport and admission to most museums and attractions in both cities. TRAVEL AGENCIES Plärrer Reisen (%929 760; Gostenhofer Hauptstrasse 27) Good all-round travel agency with a last-minute ticket desk at the airport. 
One of the largest air raid shelters during the war, High Bunker Worhd held 678 people; part of it is now used by the organisation to simulate blindness. The photo on the extreme right shows an example of an air-tight door used in Nuremberg air raid shelters.

The Nazi eagle still adorns the main administrative building for the railway.
The Hauptbahnhof is just outside the old city walls to the southeast. From here, pedestrian Königstrasse runs to the city centre, where the shallow Pegnitz River flows from east to west. About 4km southeast of the centre is the enormous Reichsparteitagsgelände, the Nazi rally grounds also known as Luitpoldhain. The courthouse where the Nuremberg Trials were held is just off the Altstadt. Information BOOKSHOPS Buchhandlung Edelmann (%992 060; Kornmarkt 8) Travel section upstairs and some English-language novels downstairs. Schmitt & Hahn (%2146 711; Hauptbahnhof; h5.30am-11pm) Full selection of international press and a decent section of current paperbacks for those travelling light.
Nearby is the Monument at Essenweinstrasse, serving as a reminder of the destruction of another synagogue during Reichkristallnacht. Images of the destruction.
Although local officials used strong rhetoric when describing all preservation projects, their criticisms of Nuremberg's Jewish synagogue were especially virulent. Like other structures targeted for removal, the synagogue was built in a late nineteenth century historicist style, making it doubly objectionable to Nazi ideologues. Walter Brugmann, a local architectural consultant, had already identified this 'Moorish-style' synagogue as a 'building sin' in 1934.46 The building's perceived 'foreign' architectural style was compounded by its seemingly disproportionate size. Brugmann suggested a new porch as a partial remedy, but officials chose a more radical solution. In Mayor Liebel's view the synagogue was 'the worst building sin of past decades. ... A settlement can only be reached through the complete removal of the synagogue.' This 'foreign' building simply could not be reconciled with the 'Old German' image that local authorities endeavoured to create. Armed with" additional authority under the German Urban Renewal Law of 1937, Liebel completed the quasi-legal demolition of the synagogue shortly before the 1938 rallies began.
Cultural Geographies, Vol. 13, No. 2 (April 2006) (169-170)
The Synagogue on Hans-Sachs-Platz was the main synagogue and was inaugurated on September 8, 1874 with a speech by the mayor Otto Stromer von Reichenbach. The building was often admired as the "pearl in the silhouette and adornment of the city". In the 1920s however, hostile voices were formed and attacks on Nuremberg Jews took place. After the seizure of power of Hitler in 1933, numerous Jews emigrated and Nuremberg's Jewish population decreased by 5,638 between 1934 and 1940. On the other hand, police officers still protected the building in 1934, when SA men tried to storm the synagogue after the Nazi Party Day. On June 15, 1938, the Jewish community in Nuremberg held an extraordinary meeting of the members, in which it was announced that the synagogue was to be demolished "in the course of the law on the reorganisation of German cities." On August 10, 1938 Julius Streicher gave the signal to demolish the  synagogue. Shortly before the demolition of the synagogue, the Jews secretly removed from the synagogue a 5-Z-heavy stone with an inscription in memory of the first synagogue burnt down 500 years ago in Nuremberg. The removal of the stone was procured by the Nuremberg master builder Fritz Frisch, who had been admitted to the Nazi Party only in 1937. Frisch was immediately expelled from the party. 
 Mostly on the night of October 29, 1938, Jews were taken from their apartments as part of the so-called “Polenaktion” and transported to the German-Polish border in guarded trains and trucks and chased over. A total of 1,631 Jews from Nuremberg were killed by the Nazis.
Another memorial stone is at Spital Bridge commemorating the destruction of Nuremberg's main synagogue located on Hans Sachs Platz. The main synagogue, which has been erased is only remembered by this memorial stone which dates from 1988. 
It was demolished on August 10, 1938 on the instructions of Julius Streicher because they "seriously disrupt the beautiful German cityscape." In a report by the "District President of Upper and Middle Franconia" of July 7, 1938, “[o]n June 15, 1938, the Israelite religious community held an extraordinary meeting of the members of their general administration in Nuremberg, in which it was announced that the main synagogue in Nuremberg would have to be demolished in order to enforce the law on the redesign of German cities. This news had a devastating effect on the Jews present there; However, it was generally clear that objections to this measure were pointless. " Another document taken from the same source dated September 7, 1938 states that “Nuremberg's party rallies experienced a memorable day on August 10, 1938: Julius Streicher gave the signal to demolish the main synagogue on Hans-Sachs-Platz, which had to be removed in order to carry out urban planning measures. Tens of thousands of national comrades attended the historical hour. […] Shortly before the synagogue was demolished, the Jews secretly had a 5-centimeter stone with an inscription in memory of the first synagogue in Nuremberg that burned down 500 years ago removed from the synagogue and taken to the Jewish cemetery. The Nuremberg builder Fritz Frisch, who had only been admitted to the Nazi Party in 1937, took care of the removal of the stone. Frisch was immediately expelled from the party and his lack of character was appropriately denounced in public. " When asked during the Nuremberg trial if the synagogue had been destroyed on his orders, Streicher replied: “Yes. There were an estimated fifteen synagogues in my Gau , one main synagogue in Nuremberg and a somewhat smaller one and, I believe, a few more prayer rooms. The main synagogue stood in the soft image of the medieval imperial city. Even before 1933, the so-called time of struggle , when we still had another government, I declared publicly in a meeting that it was a shame that such an oriental, immensely large building was placed in the old city. After the takeover , I told the mayor to have the synagogue demolished ... I cannot help that in November of that year the order was given to set fire to the synagogues."
A reconstruction of the synagogue never took place, although the property would have been available after 1945. The winning design of the architects' competition for the reconstruction of Nuremberg in 1947 did not foresee that. In the award-winning work of Heinz Schmeißner and William Schlegtendal the plot of the demolished nine years earlier synagogue was otherwise over-planned, the city plan was at this point overmoulded. A partial area was later acquired by Eduard Kappler (an architect of the reconstruction period) and built with an office and residential building. On the southern part of the plot (to Pegnitz), a new riverside path was created. In the entrance hall of the Jewish Community of Nuremberg is the model of the main synagogue of Nuremberg, which was destroyed in 1938. Through the windows one can look at finely crafted interior with lighting.


The photo on the left shows a crowd outside the Schocken department store in Nuremberg on October 11, 1925. During the Third Reich Salman Schocken was politically forced to sell his department stores to the Merkur AG through the policy of Aryanisation) After the war Schocken sold his regained share of the company (51%) to Helmut Horten GmbH, which later became part of Kaufhof and is currently owned by Metro.