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Information bulletin
No. 131 (March 23, 1948)

Cities of the US zone (first of two parts),   pp. 16-20 PDF (3.2 MB)


Page 17


(Adidves)
Two cities of prewar Germany. On the left, Stachus street in Munich.
On the right, North German Lloyd's administration building in Bremen.
Church of Rome, called the Refor-
mation, which resulted in Protestant-
ism and eventually became one of the
causes of the Thirty Years' War. This
war, or series of wars, embroiling
most of Europe but fought largely in
Germany, cost that country enormous
territorial losses and turned a third of
her cultivated land into wilderness.
Between 1618 and the Peace of
Westphalia in 1648, Germany's popu-
lation dropped from 30,000,000 to
12,000,000. Many localities suffered so
terribly that it took more than two
centuries for them to get back to
where they had stood in 1600.
The old Holy Roman Empire virtu-
ally ceased to exist. Germany became
a loose federation of 300-odd princi-
palities and free (self-ruling) cities. Re-
unification began in the 18th century
under Frederick the Great; it advanc-
ed after Prussia and Austria had allied
themselves with Britain and Russia to
defeat Napoleon I. Germany became
a federation of 39 sovereign states.
IN 1864 BISMARCK began his series
of cleverly-managed, 18th century-
style wars. Prussia invaded Denmark
and Austria within two years; in 1870,
together with the other German states,
she invaded France. After imposing
humiliating terms on France in the
Treaty of Frankfurt, Bismarck found-
ed the new German Empire by crown-
ing Prussia's William I as Emperor in
a ceremony held in Versailles.
The end of World War I saw Ger-
many with her first republican govern-
ment and not much experience in
self-rule to help her. There were in-
flation, hunger and political unrest.
Communist uprisings were put down
in Berlin, Munich, Bremen, the Ruhr
and Halle. An era of comparative
prosperity and international goodwill
toward Germany was followed by the
world-wide economic collapse of 1929.
Hitler's Nazis took power in 1933 and
Germany's quaint old cities were be-
decked with Nazi flags and filled with
marching SS men. Ten years later they
were key points in Hitler's Fortress
Europe.
IN 1942, IN the third year of the war,
I the heavy bombings of Germany's
cities began one by one. In the next
three years they were bombed into
ruins.
In 1939 Germany had 68 cities with
more than 100,000 population and 47
more with a population between 50,000
and 100,000. Today only three major
German cities remain intact; Celle and
Flensburg in the British Zone and
Heidelberg in the US Zone. A few
others, like Luebeck in the British
Zone, Bamberg in the US Zone and
Schwerin in the Soviet Zone, are in
good shape. Otherwise all Germany's
sizable cities lie in various degrees of
ruin.
Stuttgart: City of Hills
Stuttgart burned for two weeks in
the fall of 1944. Allied bombers had
done the job they had to do. When
the fire was finally brought under
control, the heart of the city was
destroyed.
Since the beginning of the occupa-
tion Stuttgart has been outstanding
among the cities of Germany for its
progress in rebuilding its streets,
homes and commercial buildings.
Much of the debris has been cleared.
Its heavy industries such as Bosch
(electrical equipment) and Junkers
(heating equipment) are producing
again. Its half million people are
active and industrious.
The monthly meetings of the US
Zone's Council of States (Laenderrat)
have kept Stuttgart in the news for
more than two years. Made up of the
ministers-president of the four Ger-
man states in the US Zone, the Coun-
cil was organized by US authorities
to coordinate the problems and pro-
gress of the states. Stuttgart is also
the seat of the weekly directorate
meetings which, composed of Council
representatives, deal with matters too
pressing to be held over until the
next monthly session.
From the 15th century the residence
of the rulers of Wuerttemberg, Stutt-
gart today is the capital of the former
rival states of Wuerttemberg-Baden
(except for a portion which lies in the
French Zone). The entire area, prob-
ably because of its proximity to the
democratic influences of its Swiss and
French neighbors, has always had a
reputation for liberalism among the
other states of Germany.
Both Wuerttemberg and Baden were
strongly influenced by the French Re-
volution; at the close of the Napo-
leonic Wars they received constitu-
tions which were among the few to
survive the despotic reaction which
arose in Germany in 1849. Both states
belonged to the independent South
MARCH 23, 1948
INFORMATION BULLETIN
17


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