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  • East Germany, Germany
    Thursday Jun 15, 1961

    Berlin Wall

    First time the colloquial term Mauer (wall) had been used in this context

    East Germany, Germany
    Thursday Jun 15, 1961

    On 15 June 1961, First Secretary of the Socialist Unity Party and GDR State Council chairman Walter Ulbricht stated in an international press conference, "Niemand hat die Absicht, eine Mauer zu errichten!" (No one has the intention of erecting a wall!). It was the first time the colloquial term Mauer (wall) had been used in this context.




  • East Germany, Germany
    Tuesday Aug 1, 1961

    Berlin Wall

    Suggestion

    East Germany, Germany
    Tuesday Aug 1, 1961

    The transcript of a telephone call between Nikita Khrushchev (the First Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union from 1953 to 1964) and Ulbricht, on 1 August in the same year, suggests that the initiative for the construction of the Wall came from Khrushchev.




  • East Germany, Germany
    Wednesday Aug 9, 1961

    Berlin Wall

    Advance Warning Information

    East Germany, Germany
    Wednesday Aug 9, 1961

    On 9 August 1961, the NSA (the American National Security Agency) intercepted an advance warning information of the Socialist Unity Party's plan to close the intra-Berlin border between East and West Berlin completely for foot traffic.




  • East Germany, Germany
    Saturday Aug 12, 1961

    Berlin Wall

    The Order has signed

    East Germany, Germany
    Saturday Aug 12, 1961

    On Saturday, 12 August 1961, the leaders of the GDR attended a garden party at a government guesthouse in Döllnsee, in a wooded area to the north of East Berlin. There, Ulbricht signed the order to close the border and erect a wall.




  • East Germany, Germany
    Sunday Aug 13, 1961

    Berlin Wall

    Barbed Wire Sunday

    East Germany, Germany
    Sunday Aug 13, 1961

    At midnight, the police and units of the East German army began to close the border and, by Sunday morning, 13 August, the border with West Berlin was closed. East German troops and workers had begun to tear up streets running alongside the border to make them impassable to most vehicles and to install barbed wire entanglements and fences along the 156 kilometres (97 mi) around the three western sectors, and the 43 kilometres (27 mi) that divided West and East Berlin. The date of 13 August became commonly referred to as Barbed Wire Sunday in Germany.




  • East Germany, Germany
    Thursday Aug 17, 1961

    Berlin Wall

    The First concrete elements

    East Germany, Germany
    Thursday Aug 17, 1961

    Later, the initial barrier was built up into the Wall proper, the first concrete elements and large blocks being put in place on 17 August.




  • Berlin, East Germany, Germany
    Tuesday Aug 22, 1961

    Berlin Wall

    First casualty

    Berlin, East Germany, Germany
    Tuesday Aug 22, 1961

    On 22 August 1961, Ida Siekmann was the first casualty at the Berlin Wall: she died after she jumped out of her third floor apartment at 48 Bernauer Strasse.


  • Berlin, East Germany, Germany
    Saturday Aug 26, 1961

    Berlin Wall

    Crossing points Closed

    Berlin, East Germany, Germany
    Saturday Aug 26, 1961

    West Berliners initially could not visit East Berlin or East Germany at all – all crossing points were closed to them between 26 August 1961 and 17 December 1963.


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