Geoff Walden

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Wehrmacht Posts / Kaserne

Part 3

Part 3 features Wehrmacht military posts in the following locations: Thüringen - Meiningen; Bavaria - Füssen; Rheinland-Pfalz - Baumholder, Bad Kreuznach; Baden-Württemberg - Schwetzingen, Mannheim, Heidelberg, Wertheim; Hamburg; Niedersachsen - Bergen-Hohne, Wolfenbüttel; Hessen - Friedberg, Gelnhausen.

Note:  This page shows only a few such sites   ...  I would be very pleased to hear from anyone who would like to share similar then-and-now photos from other Wehrmacht posts in Germany. Contact me at:  walden01 (at)

To view various Wehrmacht Kaserne sites in northern Germany, visit the Forgotten History page.

Note:  After abandonment by the military and return to the German government, many 1930s-era Kaserne are either partially or totally torn down, so the buildings shown here in modern photos may no longer be there.


Meiningen (Thüringen)

Two Kaserne were built in the southern Thüringen city of Meiningen during the Third Reich period, and other older posts were remodeled during the 1930s. These postcards show the Artillerie-Kaserne, or Barbara-Kaserne (St. Barbara being the patron saint of artillerymen). The Barbara-Kaserne was built from 1935-36 to house units from the 2nd and (later) 4th Panzer Divisions.  (MapQuest Map Link)


The Drachenberg-Kaserne was built in 1935 for the staff of Panzer-Brigade 2, and other units. The Drachenberg-Kaserne was used after the war by East German Border Guards, and is still in use today by German border troops (the buildings have been somewhat modified from their 1930s appearance).  (period postcards)


The Hauptkaserne (Main Kaserne) was built in 1865-67, with further modifications through the 1930s. The remaining buildings have been preserved as business offices. Below - Schützen-Regiment-Meiningen parades in front of the Hauptkaserne.  (above - 1934-dated postcard)


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The Barbara-Kaserne was used by the Soviet military forces (parts of the 39th Guards Motorized Rifle Division) during the Cold War, but the buildings were abandoned following the Soviet pull-out in 1991. Note the similarity of these buildings to those at Manteuffel Kaserne in Bad Kissingen, which became Daley Barracks under the U.S. 2/11th ACR - the opponents of the Soviet forces here in Meiningen. (Note - this particular building was torn down ca. 2002, and the destruction of this site will apparently continue.)


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Artillery units of the 2nd and 4th Panzer Divisions were stationed here prior to World War II, then the post was used as a hospital during the war. Since the pullout of Soviet troops these buildings have become derelict, although they retain some interesting reminders of their previous occupants, such as Russian newspapers used as wallpaper backing, and flag holders above the doors with Red Star insignia.


Buildings of the Barbara-Kaserne as they appeared in 2005. These remaining buildings were demolished in 2010 (thanks to Nicolas Flamel for info).


Füssen (Bavaria)

This military barracks was built in Füssen for Gebirgs Artillerie - Mountain Artillery troops. It is called the Allgäu Kaserne today, and still has a painted mural of a Mountain Troops soldier on the wall.  (courtesy Jeff Clark)  (Google Maps link)


Baumholder (Rheinland-Pfalz)

A military training area and large weapons range complex was established in 1937 near the village of Baumholder. This Kaserne was occupied in 1945 by the French Army, then by the U.S. Army in 1951 as H.D. Smith Barracks. The period view shows Allied vehicles occupying Baumholder shortly after the end of the war.  (Google Maps link)


Perhaps the most interesting aspect of the Baumholder Kaserne is this stone swastika, built into the side of a former administration building. Although slightly altered during a 2013 remodeling, the swastika is still there today, certainly one of the more unique remains of the Third Reich (see here).


Bad Kreuznach (Rheinland-Pfalz)

Hindenburg Kaserne was built in Bad Kreuznach in 1938. The main buildings had decorative slate work over the roof windows featuring eagles with swastikas, crosses, swords, and coats of arms (see more here). The complex was occupied by the U.S. Army in March 1945, but then turned over to the French Army. The U.S. Army again took the Kaserne over in 1951, renaming it Rose Barracks in honor of Maj. Gen. Maurice Rose, commander of the 3rd Armored Division, killed in World War II (the Kaserne in Vilseck is also named for Gen. Rose). The Kaserne was turned back over to German control during the drawdown of U.S. forces in Germany in the mid-1990s.  (Google Maps link)


Schwetzingen (Baden-Württemberg)

A Panzer Kaserne for Panzer Regiment 23, designed by Dieter Lang and Fritz Schmitt, was built outside the town of Schwetzingen in 1937-38. The U.S. Army occupied this post as Tompkins Barracks from 1945-2013. These photos show the main gate building.  (Gerdy Troost, "Das Bauen im neuen Reich," Vol. 2, Bayreuth, 1943)  (Google Maps link)


A unique 1938 mosaic of two armored knights ("Die Gepanzerten") decorates the gate house.


Views from 1938-1941 of the main gate (above) and main buildings of the Kaserne (below), with corresponding views today.  (period postcard views from


Mannheim (Baden-Württemberg)

Fliegerhorst Kaserne in Mannheim-Sandhofen was established in 1937 at a pre-war airfield. The post is used today by the U.S. Army as Coleman Barracks.  (Google Maps link)


Gallwitz Kaserne in Mannheim was built in the late 1930s. The U.S. Army used this post as Funari Barracks. The post is now closed and locked up. (period postcards)  (Google Maps link)


Kaiser-Wilhelm-Kaserne was built in Mannheim in 1901. When these photos were taken ca. 1936, the post was the home of Artillerie-Regiment 69. The U.S. Army used the post as Turley Barracks from 1945 until about 2009. When the modern photos were taken in 2016, most of these buildings were being remodeled as office buildings (see the photos at bottom). (photos donated)  (Google Maps link)


Heidelberg (Baden-Württemberg)

Großdeutschland Kaserne was built in Heidelberg in 1937, and so-named in 1938 after Austria joined the German Reich. The modern view above shows the street side of the main building; the period photo shows the other side (parade field side). The post had several military sculpture decorations - two eagles at the main gate (see here), soldier figures on the façade of the headquarters building (below), and soldier relief carvings at the doorways to other buildings inside the post. The U.S. Army used the post as Campbell Barracks from 1945-2013; for many years this was the headquarters of U.S. Army Europe (USAREUR).  (Google Maps link)


Wertheim (Baden-Württemberg)

A Fliegerhorst (airfield) was built in Wertheim in 1937. Stuka units and others flew from there during World War II. The Kaserne was used by the U.S. Army from 1945-1992 as Peden Barracks; it is now a business park. (Prof. Gerdy Troost, "Das Bauen im Neuen Reich," Part 2, Bayreuth, 1943)  (Google Maps link)


Friedberg (Hessen)

Above - U.S. Army SP/4 Elvis Presley, 1st Battalion 32nd Armored Regiment, 3rd Armored Division, stands in front of the main gate of Ray Barracks in Friedberg in 1959. The post was started before World War I as Wartturm Kaserne, and used by the Wehrmacht in World War II (the gate building seen above is from the 1930s), and by the U.S. Army from 1945-2007. The post is now abandoned and locked up, except once a year during the local Elvis festival.  (Google Maps link)

Below - In April 1959 Elvis helped in the relocation of a local military monument for World War I dead in Steinfurth, a part of the city of Bad Nauheim, where Elvis lived. The monument remains in this location today, at the town cemetery. The block labeled HELDEN 1914-1918 (Heroes) that Elvis was guiding is outlined in red in the modern photo. (U.S. Army photo)  (Google Maps link)


Gelnhausen (Hessen)

Herzbachkaserne was built in Gelnhausen in 1936. This was (and is) one of the most attractive Kaserne sites in Germany, with barracks and administration buildings surrounding a lake. The post originally housed Panzer Abwehr Abteilung 9 (anti-tank battalion). The U.S. Army arrived in 1945 and used the post as Coleman Barracks until 1994. Gen. Colin Powell was stationed here as a Lieutenant in 1958-60 and a street is still named for him. The barracks buildings are now used to house refugees, with a Police station in one of the buildings. Below - one of the gate buildings. (period postcards)  (Google Maps link)


The weather vane on the cupola of what was the Wehrmacht administration building and officers club features an artillery piece and the date 1936.


What makes this one of the most interesting Kaserne sites in Germany is the series of nine red sandstone relief carvings above the barracks building entry doorways, depicting various military conflicts in Germanic history. Above - Roman soldiers prepare siege weapons and attack their enemies from chariots. Below - Romans fight Germanic Cimbri and Teutonic tribesmen, ca. 100 B.C. The Germanic soldier in the center has a swastika on his shield. (info from by Gudrun Kauck)


Above - The Germanic leader Arminius (Armin the Cherusker, Hermann the German) successfully battles the Romans in the Teutoburg Forest. Below - Said to portray Siegfried, hero of the Nibelung Saga. One of the figures (Siegfried?) is wearing a swastika brooch on his tunic.


Above - Saxon King Heinrich I (Henry the Fowler) leads German forces against Hungarians (Magyars) and other enemies. Below left - Thirty Years War (1618-1648). Below right - Napoleonic Wars - Baron von Stein (Heinrich Friedrich Karl von und zu Stein) as a Prussian leader during the defeat of Napoleon's French army in 1813-1815.


In a contemporary (1936) salute to the Kaserne's anti-tank battalion, this vignette shows a German Army crew engaging what appear to be Russian T26 tanks with their 3.7cm Pak 36 anti-tank gun. Note the ammunition handler at far right, lying on the ground and handing a cartridge forward to the gun loader.


The final relief depicts a Wehrmacht soldier of 1936 clasping hands with an SA Mann (left) and a factory worker or smith (right), with the legend IM JAHRE DER EHRE 1936 (In the Year of Honor 1936). To the left of the central group (below left) are figures depicting an architect, a doctor (?), a girl in a BDM jacket (Bund Deutscher Mädel), and a mother with child. The group to the right (below right) includes a mother with a boy in HJ uniform (Hitler Jugend) and figures that have been defaced by explosive and/or machine gun damage (several of the previous figures also show bullet damage, probably from 1945). These final figures are unclear, but may show a farmer couple in Trachten (regional costume), and the final figure is evidently a journeyman carpenter, from his distinctive bell-bottom pants.



A Kaserne named for the capture of Fort Douaumont at Verdun during WW1 was established in Hamburg in the early 1930s. The Kaserne serves today as a Bundeswehr University. A large pylon with an eagle remains in front of the Kaserne.  (period postcards in author's collection)  (Google Maps link)


A monument honoring the German East Africa troops in WW1 was built adjacent to Estorff Kaserne in Hamburg. The monument also honored Rommel's Akrika Korps after WW2. The monument still exists in a gated park; today the eagle bears an iron cross instead of a swastika.  (period postcard in author's collection)  (Google Maps link)


Bergen-Hohne and Wolfenbüttel (Niedersachsen)

The Bergen-Hohne Kaserne has served as a training area since 1935. Today it is used by both the British Army and the German Bundeswehr. The building seen here was the Wehrmacht Offizier Heim. Today it is a British Army community center called the Roberts Roundhouse, or just the Roundhouse.  (Google Maps link)


Flak Kaserne in Wolfenbüttel was built in 1935 for Flak Regiment 36. The post's appearance has changed very little, but it is no longer used by the military.  (period postcard)  (Google Maps link)



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This page initially uploaded on 20 July 2000.