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.

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) comcast.net.

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

 

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.  (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 usarmygermany.com)

 

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This page is intended for historical research only, and no political or philosophical aims should be assumed. 
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This page initially uploaded on 20 July 2000.


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