Nature + Green  

 

Cemeteries and Other Burial Sites

Soviet Memorial in Treptower Park


Soviet Memorial Treptower Park - Aerial view
Berlin Map
Link to the city map
Berlin Borough
Treptow-Köpenick
 
using the FIS-Broker
using the FIS-Broker

The Soviet Memorial in Treptower Park was built after the end of World War II. The military council of the Soviet military administration in Germany had sponsored a competition in the fall of 1946 that explicitly solicited designs foregrounding the liberation from National Socialism, rather than the idea of victory.

Thirty-three designs were submitted; the winning entry came from a Soviet "creative collective" headed by the architect Yakov S. Belopolski, the sculptor Yevgeni W. Vuchetich, the painter Alexander A. Gorpenko, and the engineer Sarra S. Valerius. In 1947 a special unit of engineer officers was commissioned to construct the memorial; German companies carried out the work under their supervision. This extraordinary war memorial and military cemetery was officially dedicated on 8 May 1949. It covered 9 hectares between Puschkinallee to the north and the street Am Treptower Park to the south. The site had once been a hippodrome-shaped playground and sports field in the middle of a public park designed by Gustav Meyer and laid out from 1876 to 1888.

The two entrances to the memorial, on Puschkinallee and on the street Am Treptower Park, are defined by two massive arches. Wide paths first take visitors into a clearing, where they see a three-meter granite statue of "Mother Homeland." A promenade flanked by weeping birches then leads past two huge stylized flags sculpted of red granite into the main section of the grounds, the actual war cemetery. At the foot of the raised plateau and along the central axis are five rectangular lawn sections, which are designed as symbolic communal graves and framed by a broad, decorative mosaic walkway. Eight sarcophagi made of limestone blocks stand on each side of this central area and symbolize the 16 republics the Soviet Union consisted of at the time. Their reliefs illustrate scenes from the "Great Patriotic War" waged from 1941 to 1945. The graves of the more than 7,000 soldiers killed in battle and laid to rest here are behind the sarcophagi in the lawn areas under the sycamore trees.

The heart of the memorial grounds is a conical hill bearing a tomb that also serves as the pedestal for the memorial’s central figure, a Red Army soldier. The interior of the crypt is decorated with a mosaic frieze portraying representatives from the 16 Soviet republics, who are shown honoring the dead. The bronze sculpture of the Soviet soldier, holding a rescued child in his arm and a lowered sword over a shattered swastika, symbolizes the overthrow of National Socialism and the prospect of a peaceful future.

Soviet Memorial in Treptower Park
Adress Am Treptower Park or Puschkinallee, 12435 Berlin
Opened 8 May 1949
Size 93,000 m²
Number of graves More than 7,000
Type of cemetery Military cemetery and memorial
Object of memorial Red Army soldiers in World War II
Location/Transport See city map
fill

Treptower Park Memorial - Relief detail
Treptower Park Memorial - Relief detail

Treptower Park Memorial - Cemetery
Treptower Park Memorial - Cemetery

Treptower Park Memorial - Weeping birches
Treptower Park Memorial - Weeping birches

Treptower Park Memorial - Red Army Soldier
Treptower Park Memorial - Red Army Soldier

Treptower Park Memorial - Mother Homeland
Treptower Park Memorial - Mother Homeland

Further Information