Kult Pamięci
history - remembrance - oblivion

 the Battle of Tannenberg
 the cult of Marshal Hindenburg
 Hindenburg's funeral
 the history of the appearance of the  monument
 the Tannenberg-Denkmal monument
 a new national symbol
 the ideological nature of the  monument
 the history of the monument
 Stalag IB Hohenstein
 places of remembrance
 traces of memory - trip one
 the cult of memory
 the project
 broken links between memory and  history
 Pierre Nora, Between Memory and  History Les lieux de Memoire  (a fragment)
 a mock-up of the monument
 the location
 the monument dispersed
 the erasure of history
 the present condition - debris

 the archive
private photographs

The Tannenberg Monument to the Reich

The History of the Monument

The hills of the East-Prussian land around Hohenstein undulate widely and freely, Hohenstein being the town which was the centre of a great Tannenberg Battle in the days of the August of 1914, the town in whose vicinity now stands the Monument to the Glory of Hindenburg and Those Fallen under Tannenberg. A sanctified soil around, the holy earth which witnessed a heroic battle for German liberation. Today, the Towers of the Reich Monument welcome us equally widely and freely as this land does, equally forcefully and valiantly as the soldiers who once won here, the greeting flowing over the land, admonishing and greeting us seriously over the German borderland in the east; they sent their greetings towards the main homeland – the place for the pilgrimages of the German nation.

The German confidence and German stamina win over the Russian army during the harshest period of the War in the biggest battle of the World War which has ever been fought on the German land. And during this largest oppression, already during the War, German determination was ready to elevate a dignified monument to the glory of the fallen on the site of the battle. The energetic efforts of East-Prussian veterans created its first, solid basis, against all the odds, the idea was preserved and the goal reached: on the tenth anniversary of the victory, 31 August 1924, General-Field Marshall von Hindenburg – the commander and victor of the greatest battle – performed the act of the placement of the corner stone for the prospective monument. The Association of the National Tannenberg Memorial (Tannenberg-Nationaldenkmalverein) assumed the difficult task of the organisation of its construction, so its members' steadfast endeavours permitted them to gather due means. In the competition for the best design the General-Field-Marshall himself decided about the selection of the project of the two Krüger brothers, who proposed to construct and realised the monument on the circular motif of old Germanic sacrifice venues. The shell-stage of this gigantic building was ready at the General-Field-Marshal's eightieth birthday. It was opened on 18 September 1927 and the Leader's words defying the then lie that it had been Germany who was responsible for the outbreak of the War, deeply reverberated throughout the world. Today they adorn the entrance gate to the memorial The years of its continuous building are coming. Despite that time is hard, its extension continues.... And a new morning star has risen above Germany: Adolf Hitler creates The Third Reich and bestows the Leader of the Greatest Battle the most noble place for his final rest – he sees him off to the Tannenberg Memorial which, from this moment on, becomes The Reich Monument to the Glory of Hindenburg and Those Fallen is honoured in the seemliest way thanks to the Führer and Reich Chancellor's declaration.

Tannenberg becomes the destination of pilgrimages of the whole German nation.

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