Bombing raid on October 18th: Historical photos show the devastation in Bonn

Bombing raid on October 18th : Historical photos show the devastation in Bonn

Bonn was not recognizable after the war. Like other German cities, the eventual capital had been the scene of fierce battles and bombardments. The General-Anzeiger shows pictures from Bonn in 1944 and today in direct comparison.

October 18th marks the 75th anniversary of the bombing of Bonn. During World War II, Bonn was largely unaffected by bombing raids until autumn of 1944. On October 18, 1944, a devastating air strike by the Allies destroyed the entire city center from the second ferry route to Wachsbleiche, and the bombs also hit Beuel. 250 bombers with 50 mines, 2,000 explosive bombs and 80,000 stick-type incendiary bombs as well as liquid bombs weighing up to 100 kilograms were used. 700 houses were totally destroyed. 400 people died.

A firestorm swept through the city center after the bombing. Hardly any building had been spared. University, town hall, hospitals, schools and churches, everything was destroyed. A map with the locations where the photos were taken can be found here. The General-Anzeiger shows pictures of Bonn taken in 1944 and how it looks today in direct comparison. The pictures of today's Bonn were taken in 2015. We have also compiled a series of re-colored historical photos here: Kolorierte Bilder: So sehen historische Fotos der Region in Farbe aus.

Reuterstrasse 120

Here you can see what the modern Bonn looks like in comparison to the war years. The color photos are from the year 2015. Move the white slider in the middle of the picture to the right or left and see the pictures in direct comparison.

Rear view of the university, street "Am Hof".

Here you can see what the modern Bonn looks like in comparison to the war years. Move the white slider in the middle of the picture to the right or left and see the pictures in direct comparison.

Koblenzer Tor (Gate of Koblenz)

Here you can see what the modern Bonn looks like in comparison to the war years. Move the white slider in the middle of the picture to the right or left and see the pictures in direct comparison.

Maximilianstrasse, corner at Gangolfstraße with a view to the Minster

Here you can see what the modern Bonn looks like in comparison to the war years. Move the white slider in the middle of the picture to the right or left and see the pictures in direct comparison.

Wesselstrasse, corner at Am Neutor with a view to the university

Here you can see what the modern Bonn looks like in comparison to the war years. Move the white slider in the middle of the picture to the right or left and see the pictures in direct comparison.

First ferry route with a view of the Rhine

Here you can see what the modern Bonn looks like in comparison to the war years. Move the white slider in the middle of the picture to the right or left and see the pictures in direct comparison.

Kennedy Bridge

Here you can see what the modern Bonn looks like in comparison to the war years. Move the white slider in the middle of the picture to the right or left and see the pictures in direct comparison.

The entrance to the Beethovenhaus

Here you can see what the modern Bonn looks like in comparison to the war years. Move the white slider in the middle of the picture to the right or left and see the pictures in direct comparison.

Friedensplatz with a view of Friedrichstrasse

Here you can see what the modern Bonn looks like in comparison to the war years. Move the white slider in the middle of the picture to the right or left and see the pictures in direct comparison.

Friedensplatz with a view of the Sterntor Bridge

Here you can see what the modern Bonn looks like in comparison to the war years. Move the white slider in the middle of the picture to the right or left and see the pictures in direct comparison.

In the night from May 8 to 9 of 1945, the Second World War ended with the unconditional surrender of the German Wehrmacht. Two months before the official end of the fighting, the weapons on the Rhine had already been rendered inactive. With the invasion of the Americans on March 8, the city of Bonn, lying in ruins, became a place between two worlds. Although liberated from the Nazi regime for some time already, the final victory propaganda boomed from Berlin for weeks. Hitler's "thousand-year Reich" had survived for twelve years. It was long enough to plunge Europe into the abyss and to commit an unprecedented crime against people and humanity with the holocaust.

Orig.: Andreas Dyck

Translation: ck

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