Friday 13 November 2015

Deutsches Historisches Museum

Painting of Early WW1 battle.
(Deutsches Historisches Museum).

Dear readers, during the last week yours truly have been kidnapped from the hobby table, and taken abroad on business. The upside was, that the impending meeting would be with an Ad Agency - in Berlin! 

Ran into this guy in the middle of the street.
Friedrich is yet again popular - due to his multi-cultural support during his reign,
his enlightenment adherence and supposed homosexuality.

My travel plans offered me a generous 4 hrs extra time in the city, which I enthusiastically spend on visiting two landmarks of particular interest to the history hobbyist. The fantastic Berliner Zinnfiguren Shop next to Savigny Platz, and the monumentally impressive German National History Museum (Deutsches Historisches Museum).

The Berliner Stadtschloss anno 2015.
€105.000.000 is being poured into the re-construction.

After a double quick check-in at the hotel, I made my way down to Alexanderplatz for a mandatory Kurrywurst. A short post-lunch walk took me over to the "Museumsinsel" and past the massive construction ground for the re-building of the Berliner Stadtschloss - the palace that housed many kings of Prussia and a few Kaisers of the German Reich. 

The Stadtschloss late 19th Cent.

It was destroyed after WW2 by German Communists, and in its places they build the Volkskammer (DDR Parlament) during the German division into east and west. After the reunification the decision was made to rebuild the old Scholß for its historic and symbolic value - a project of some €105.000.000!

At the entrance of the museum Bismarck carefully examines all the visitors.

Having gazed at the massive Stadtschloss, it was finally time to enter the holy Grail - the German National History Museum. Here follows a series of pictures from my visit:

Medieval German/Teutonic pavisade.

Late medieval maximillian armour.

Samples from the Thirty Years War armoury.

Die Lange - The tall guards of Friedrich's father.
His passion for tall men took him across Europe with bounty hunters searching 
for the next colossus to get enrolled.

Frederick the Great's uniform.
Having read about this king since I was a young teenager, 
it was pretty special to actually see this thing live.

The actual hat Napoleon wore at Waterloo, 
captured as a trophy by the Prussians.

The Prussians storm the Danish position at Als.
The War of 1864.

Captured Danish flags.
The war of 1864.

The extremely effective Needle-gun used against 
the Austrians and the French in 1866 and 1870-71.

The actual uniform of Kaiser Wilhelm II.
Note the shorter left sleeve. Wilhelm had an underdeveloped left arm.

WW1 British and French uniforms.

Beautiful and large (1.5 meter) model of the sms Markgraf,
 which fought at the Battle of Jutland in 1916.

The nazification period in the 30ies.
Different kinds of Nazi party uniforms.

Nazi Propaganda Poster focusing on the young audience.
"The youth serves the Führer. All 10 year old in the Hitler Jugend".

An original model by Albert Speer.

German infantry uniform of 1944.

"The Liberation Game"
Who can reach Berlin first?

Portraits of  people who were exterminated at Dachau.

Original Newspaper from 1945 announcing Hitler's death.

Germany 1945 - a land in absolute ruins.

Germany divided - a DDR boarder post.

Actual pieces of the Berlin Wall.
For someone who grew up in the 80ies, 
this part of the museum left the greatest impression on me. 

The Deutsches Historisches Museum kept me entranced for several hours.
As I left the building and strolled down Unter den Linden towards The Brandenburger Tor, I was still digesting the impressions I had gathered. What a magnificent, turbulent, terrible but grand history this country has. 

Thank you very much for reading.