Map of East Germany

 

 

 

 

 

 East Germany had an area of    41,828 sq mi (108,333 kmē), a little larger than South Korea. The major cities and population in 1988:

 

    Berlin   (Capital Hauptstadt )  1,200,000

 

    Leipzig 556,000 site of the 1989 Monday     demonstrations

 

     Dresden 520,000 Heavily damaged in WW2

     Dresden has become the economic, political and

     cultural center of eastern Germany. The Dresden area      was called the Valley of the Clueless" (Tal der      Ahnungslosen before unification because it could

     not receive West Germany tv broadcasts.

     

      Karl-Marx-Stadt  317,000

     ( renamed Chemnitz )

 

      Magdeburg 290,000

 

      Rostock   250,000  Major port on the Baltic Sea

 

      Halle 236,000

 

      Erfurt 215,000  unlike most major German cities was not heavily damaged during WW2, medieval  center still intact

 

      Postdam 140,000 Residence of the Prussian       kings until 1918. Site of the  July 1945 meeting       between  Truman , Churchill and Stalin to plan post war Europe. The Glienicke Bridge across the Havel  connected the city to West Berlin and was the scene of some Cold War exchanges of spies.

 

      Cottbus 125,000 large population of Sorbs   

 

      Zwickau  120,000  a center for the mining of  coal  and  production of Trabant automobiles.

 

      Jena  107,000 home of the Zeiss optical firm

 

      Dessau 105,000  famous for the Bauhaus       design  school

 

     Until 1952, the GDR consisted of the German states of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Brandenburg, Saxony-Anhalt, Thuringia, Saxony and the capital, East Berlin.

 

   In the administrative reform of 1952, the states were    abolished and replaced with 14 smaller districts. The    districts were named after their capitals: Rostock,    Neubrandenburg, Schwerin, Potsdam, Frankfurt (Oder), Magdeburg, Cottbus, Halle, Leipzig, Erfurt,    Dresden, Karl-Marx-Stadt (named Chemnitz until    1953 and again after 1990), Gera, and Suhl. East    Berlin was recognized as a district in 1961.

 

  Travel to East Germany. It was possible to visit East   Germany. Once inside, a visitor would be closely   watched by the Stasi. Any East German talking with a    foreigner would be questioned. Travelers were    required to register with the Volkspolizei. Customs   were difficult with any western newspapers, books,   CDs,etc being seized .

 

Magdeburg in the 1970s     

 

famous bust of Karl Marx in Karl Marx Stadt

 

   Deutsche Reichsbahn was the national railway of East Germany

 

 

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