27 Amazing Color Snapshots Capture Street Scenes of Berlin in the Mid-1950s

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Ten years after the end of World War II, Germany was rebuilding. Cities like Berlin, which had been severely damaged during the war were emerging from the rubble as the ‘Wirtschaftswunder’ or ‘economic miracle’ transformed West Germany.

In the immediate post-war period hundreds of thousands of allied troops were stationed in the divided country, many of them with cameras. Found recently at a flea market, these images were taken by a US Serviceman in Berlin from 1956-57.

Ten years after the end of the war, large swathes of Berlin still lay in ruins.

The scene during the winter of 1956 was bleak.

The Berlin Wall was still some years away from being erected in the winter of 1956 but even without it, Berlin was a divided city. Here, a sign in English, Russian and French marks the border of the American Sector.

The ‘hunger rake’ memorial at Templehof Airport. The memorial commemorates the Berlin Airlift of 1948/9 when allied aircraft kept West Berlin supplied by air, to break a Soviet blockade.

A snowy Berlin street scene in the winter of 1956. Translated, the sign reads ‘Start of the Democratic Sector of Greater Berlin’, marking the boundary of the Soviet sector.

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