International Necronautical Society INS Inspectorate Berlin
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Target site summary: Zentralfriedhof, Lichtenberg, Berlin

The foundation stone of the so-called Revolutionsdenkmal was laid in 1924 at the grave site of Karl Liebknecht and Rosa Luxemburg, communist leaders who had been murdered by the Freikorps ‘police’ deployed to suppress the revolutionary attempt which followed the founding of the Republic. Money for the construction was raised by the Communist Party by selling postcards depicting the design by Mies van der Rohe. The monument was unveiled in 1926 on the anniversary of the death of Luxemburg. The monument became a place pilgrimage and was the site of the last major demonstration against the NS regime, during which three communists were killed. The monument was defaced by Nazis and demolished in 1935. The ground appears to have been used for other burials although it is not clear whether bodies were removed. A new memorial monument known as the 'Gedenkstätte der Sozialisten’ was is built in 1951 at the entrance to the cemetery. Fake carcophagi for Luxemburg, Liebknecht and other heroes of the revolution or the GDR state are arranged around a central column. The outer circle is decorated with salvaged gravestones of other communists from the revolutionary era and memorial plaques for party officials. In 1983 a monument to the earlier monument was erected with a bronze plaque depicting the original design and the inscription, ‘Auf diesem Fundament stand das Revolutionsdenkmal ...’

Survey: PR-D-130505 carried out by Anthony Auerbach assisted by Rachel Juris, 13 May 2005, 191 photographs