Trümmerfrauen (literally translated as ruins women or rubble women) is the German-language name for women who, in the aftermath of World War II helped clear and reconstruct the bombed cities. The fascinating colored films were shot in Berlin in June 1945 by a film team directed by William Wyler.
On April 30, 1945 American troops reached the City of Munich. 2 days prior they had liberated the Nazi Concentration Camp Dachau, 20 miles away from the city. The same day a group of resistance fighters, the “Freiheitsaktion Bayern” (Mission Free Bavaria) had tried to gain control over the city but were defeated by SS units that were placed close to the city. Cameramen of the US Army Signal Corps filmed the advance to Munich of the 45th US Infantry and the 20th Armoured divisions. The films of April 29 and April 30, 1945 show some fights between American units and groups of SS soldiers hidden in the woods during their approach to the city. An American soldier is carrying the towns signpost “München – Hauptstadt der Bewegung” (Munich Capital of the Nazi Movement) as Hitler had denoted the Bavarian city. Inside the city American vanguards met groups of citizens willing to help them move ahead. There was no fighting downtown Munich, nevertheless the Nazi Wehrmacht and their broadcaster spoke about heavy resistance. The film shows vanguards moving towards the city center through Dachauer Straße, the surrender of the city, authorities in the police headquarters and people downtown Munich welcoming the US tanks with white rags. Joyous and celebratory scenes were shot at the Lenbachplatz where children are lifted up to American tanks as a sign of freedom.
All footage has been collected and scanned on HD by Framepool and is available at Framepool.com
Dachau became one of the largest Concentration camps in Germany, a mere metropolis of death. It served as a prototype and model for other Nazi concentration camps. Established by the Nazis in March 1933, the Dachau concentration camp was “the first concentration camp for political prisoners” as Heinrich Himmler stated. It is located on the grounds of a former munitions factory near Dachau, about 16 kilometers (10 miles) northwest of Munich. Almost every community in Germany had members taken away to these camps. Newspapers continually reported the removal to concentration camps of the enemies of “the Reich” – what means opponents to the Nazi dictatorship.
Stephan Bleek | | Zeitgeist – Vintage Film | 1933, 1945, archival film, Bavaria, Dachau, footage, Framepool, Germany, HD, historical Footage, history, Munich, Nazi, Nazi concentration camps, Stock footage, Third Reich | 0 Comments
This newsreel footage produced in Germany by the US Group Control Council (USGCC) in August 1945 shows the loading of looted art in Berchtesgaden and Neuschwanstein Castle.
In June 1945 the Munich Central Collecting Point was opened in the former Nazi Party Headquarters close to the Königsplatz downtown Munich. Central Collecting Points were established in Munich and Wiesbaden, to house and sort the thousands of works of art being found by Monuments Men in repositories across Southern Germany, and the Central Collecting Point in Munich was designated to primarily hold ERR (Einsatzstab Reichsleiter Rosenberg) loot, Hitler and Goering’s collections, and other masterpieces found in Berchtesgaden, Neuschwanstein and the Altaussee salt mine.
Stephan Bleek | | Zeitgeist – Vintage Film | 1945, Arts, Berchtesgaden, footage, Germany, Harry V Anderson, Hermann Göring, historical Footage, Looted Art, Munich, Nazi, Neuschwanstein Castle, Stock footage, Video, Walter Andreas Hofer, World War 2 | 0 Comments