Wewelsburg Castle

Wewelsburg Castle

El Wewelsburg Castle is located in the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia. It is a XNUMXth century castle built in the European Renaissance style. But this castle is not famous for its architecture, but rather for having housed the elite of the SS, an organization in the service of Hitler during Nazi Germany. Because of this, many of its records and history were lost.

Let learn a little more about the history of this castle that today houses a museum and can be visited. It is a castle that is related to the darkest part of German history, but it can undoubtedly be a place of great interest to learn more about this period.

Where is it located

El Wewelsburg Castle is located in the district of Paderborn in North Rhine-Westphalia. The village of Wewelsburg in which the castle is located is part of the town of Büren. To see this place we can land at various airports such as Cologne, Hannover or Düsseldorf, which are about four hours away. From these airports we can find transportation by train or bus to Wewelsburg. The most recommended is undoubtedly the Düsseldorf airport, which is the closest, with a train that arrives in about two hours in Paderborn.

History of Wewelsburg Castle

Wewelsburg Castle

This castle was built in its present appearance in the XNUMXth century, intended to be a secondary residence for the Prince Bishop of Paderborn. However, on this hill there were already other previous constructions and fortifications even in the XNUMXth century, due to its strategic location. This castle suffered damage and was partly destroyed during times, as in the Thirty Years War. Years later it was rebuilt and in the XNUMXth century it was used as a military prison. Legend says that even women accused of witchcraft were imprisoned. Already in the XNUMXth century this castle became part of the kingdom of Prussia. In 1924 the castle became the property of the Büren district and was transformed into a cultural center. In 1925 the castle was already used as a youth hostel, banquet space, restaurant and museum.

The Castle of the SS

Wewelsburg Castle

Heinrich Himmler signed a lease with the district of Paderborn in 1934 a hundred years on the castle. The intention of this SS leader was to rehabilitate the castle using it as a training place for the elite of this organization dedicated to Nazism. It is not really known why he decided to rent this place, but it is said that it could be because of the prophecy told by Karl Maria Willigut about the Battle of the Birch. According to this prophecy, a last battle was approaching in which the great army of the East would be definitively defeated by the West. Apparently this castle would be the place that would decide on the victory of the battle, thus becoming for him a symbol of the next victory. He believed that this castle would become the center of the world when other armies were defeated.

Over time it was learned that the school did not take place, but instead an archaeological center for the study of the Aryan race was built in the castle. To this end they created various research areas, on prehistory, medieval history and folklore and a library for the SS. More funds were invested in this castle to create an ideological center. Already in 1939 Himmler himself would prohibit any publication about the castle. At this time it was thought that the castle was going to be the center of the new world. From that year on, labor from concentration camps such as Sachsenhausen would be used to rehabilitate the castle.

The castle today

Wewelsburg Castle

Today it is possible to visit the castle and see its peculiar rooms. It has been kept as a memory of these dark years of German history, in order not to forget the deeds of the SS and Nazism. You can see places like the crypt, which mimics a Mycenaean tomb to commemorate the dead. At its center there must have been an eternal gas-fueled flame and twelve pedestals around it, the meaning of which is unknown. But these kinds of places give us an idea of ​​the symbolism that surrounded Nazism and its leaders.

You can also see the known as the Generals Room with a marble floor in which we can appreciate a mosaic that represents the Black Sun with twelve rays that form the symbol of the SS. When the Nazis lost the war Himmler ordered the castle to be demolished but it remained standing and was restored.

Today in the castle we can visit also the SS Museum that it is not a place of commemoration but a space to remember what they did. In this place you can even see some of Himmler's diaries.

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