Let’s start with a firework and a glimpse into the past of Waldkraiburg, as my hometown was built on the ruins of a former explosives factory of the Deutsche Sprengchemie, that was constructed between 1939 – 1942 for the production of explosives to be used in World War II. This complex consisted of about 600 buildings. It was known under the name of chocolate factory … Considering the product that left the factory, it must have been very bitter chocolate.
Redistribution among the winners has started a flight of refugees from the occupied lands. Normally Germans in the occupied areas would have no more than 2 – 3 days to leave their homes and take with them only the basic every day stuff. All their belongings went over to the winners, and many of them would just leave with one suitcase.
When arriving on German territory, most locals would not welcome, but simply reject them. The war was over and they would not want to share the very little belongings they still had with the refugees.
Such refugees, expelled from their homes, with very little belongings, came to this area. At that time Waldkraiburg didn’t even exist as a name.
The first displaced people to arrive in the Bunker City came from Tepl (today’s Teplá in the Czech Republic) in April 1946. Within two weeks two further transports with expelled people arrived. They came from Eger (now Cheb in CZ) and Neutischein (now Novy Jicin also in CZ). On August 13, 1946 the whole area was reallocated for the expelled, 3 additional transports of refugees settled down here.
About 120 buildings, mainly production facilities, which were still intact after the bombings, have been blown up by the Allied Forces. Only some ruins of former bunkers and production facilities remained.
Those people, who came here with almost nothing, created their first homes right on top of the foundations of former bunkers.
From ruins they created foundations. On these foundations they built their homes.
The community was born – so to speak – on the 1st of April 1950.
10 years later, on June 14, 1960 the community, meanwhile with a population of over 8,000 was granted the privileges of a town.
And here we are today – the second largest city in the South-Eastern area of Northern Bavaria – built on the ruins of an explosive factory.
on this blog
- more photos from Europe
- more information (in German language) about Europe