The Third Reich in Ruins website – amazing resource, check it out!



The Third Reich in Ruins  …  This page presents photos of historical sites associated with Germany’s Third Reich (1933-1945), both as they appeared while in use, and as the remains appear today. These photos give a “then and now” perspective, in many cases, a virtual tour of the sites. I was originally inspired to write this page by a collection of photos taken by my father, U.S. Army Air Forces Lt. Delbert R. Walden, when he was stationed in Germany in 1945-46

Luitpold Arena


The Luitpold Arena could hold over 150,000 Nazis, and was the scene of SS and SA gatherings. At one end was the Ehrenhalle, a war memorial built in 1929. The arena is now a large grassy park, very popular on sunny afternoons. Only the Ehrenhalle is left at this end, the adjacent grandstands having been removed(U.S. National Archives RG 242)




The other end of the Luitpold Arena was a grandstand with a speaker’s platform and three tall swastika banners, designed by Albert Speer. The large eagles on either end were by the sculptor Kurt Schmid-Ehmen. On the right above, the ruins as seen by U.S. Army GIs on 27 April 1945. Only the steps at one end of this grandstand remain today, all the other ruins having been removed and covered over with earth.  (above left and below – period postcards; above right – National Archives Record Group 111-SC, #205452)





These aerial views show the Luitpold Arena, with the Ehrenhalle at the lower center and the grandstand at the upper center (in the view on the left). The long building at the upper left was the Luitpoldhalle, scene of the Nazi Party congresses. The Luitpoldhalle was a converted industrial exhibition building. It was badly damaged during wartime bombing attacks and its ruins were later removed.  (period postcards)




A view of the Luitpold Arena podium during a Reichsparteitag celebration.  (Life collection)Period postcard of the Luitpoldhalle decorated for a Reichsparteitag celebration.  (courtesy Al Taylor)




The Luitpoldhalle was badly damaged during wartime bombing attacks, and its ruins were removed after the war. A portion of the steps in front remain today.  (from Werner Rittich, “Architektur und Bauplastik der Gegenwart,” Berlin, 1938; below left – Life collection)



A nazi gathering in the Luitpoldhalle in 1933, from a period postcard.


You will spend hours reading this amazing website and well done to all those involved – The Third Reich in Ruins

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