#ThursdayDoors: Wismar Germany

This week I’m going back in time to 1995, the year we went to Wismar, Germany.

MapWismar

The dotted red line between Schwerin and Wismar marks the autobahn Germany was building to connect the coastal towns to Berlin.

From the end of WWII until 1989, Wismar was behind the Iron Curtain, making travel there almost impossible. Even six years after the Berlin Wall had fallen, the rustic two lane road from Lubeck to Wismar catered more to donkey carts and tractors than cars and thus resulted in a frustrating three hour drive.  Before the war, the towns along the southern Baltic were popular vacation destinations and the thought is evidently to revive them. However, in 1995 Germany still had a long way to go.DoorWismar

Aside from the lack of easy access, many of the coastal towns were heavily bombed by the Allies in 1945. Instead of rebuilding them, the Soviets simply moved the residents to cheaply-built, concrete-block apartments outside the city walls leaving their centers to sit in ruins for decades. When we were there construction cranes hung over the town as buildings that could not be renovated were destroyed.

Wismar4

Our bed and breakfast was one of the more modern buildings.

Another challenge for Germany, the locals seemed to think making money off tourism was a tawdry business indeed. Certainly anyone caught speaking English on the streets was given the evil eye.

WIsmar2

The town center – note the Hanseatic design of the building facades.

 

Sorry for the poor quality of the pictures.  We didn’t have the best camera and it rained the whole time we were there.Wismar1

I believe this is St. Nicholas Cathedral but, because it was under repair, we couldn’t get near.

In case you’re wondering why we made a difficult journey to an obscure town on the Baltic, well, here goes: In 1663 (or around that time) a Swedish general conquered this important trade route and until 1717 it remained under Swedish rule.  In return the general attained the noble title “Conqueror of Wismar.”  According to a bit of family lore spawned by a Mormon missionary’s trip to the Swedish History Museum, my husband is one of his descendants.  Didn’t know I was married to royalty, did you?

Check out other doors at Norm Frampton’s fun (and often challenging) #ThursdayDoors event.

35 thoughts on “#ThursdayDoors: Wismar Germany

  1. Excellent post your Highness *bowing*
    I love the look of the old printed photos. It reminds me that I have many old vacation photos to scan…one of these days 🙂

  2. lol – every comment going through my head as I was reading this has showed up in the comments by others. What a great bunch! 🙂

    I was really taken with the 1st photo and all the broken windows and the blue bottomed doors. As Dan said, I really hope that building survived!

  3. Travel is such a wonderful gift to ourselves and the memories captured by photos bring it all back vividly. Second best is to read of other people’s experiences, especially if it’s about places I’ve not seen. Thanks for sharing. X

  4. Yes, counts must understand that “cool” is only used by the commoners! Unless you’d like to be known as Count of Cool. Then we’ll have to get the permission of the great, great, great, great, great grandson of the Conquerer of Wismar. ; )

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