November 9th – A Fateful Day in German History

November 9th is a particular, a fateful day in German history. Across less than 100 years, four major events happened on this very day.

November 9, 1918: End of the Monarchy

Kaiser Wilhelm II abdicates (or rather had no choice but to abdicate after the Chancellor had already announced that the emperor had abdicated).

Philipp Scheidemann

Philipp Scheidemann

Philipp Scheidemann, a member of the government and member of parliament for the SPD (Social Democratic Party), proclaimed the German Republic in a speech from a balcony of the Reichstag (Parliament)

“The old and rotten, the monarchy has collapsed. The new may live. Long live the German Republic!”

November 8 & 9, 1923: Hitler’s 1st Coup d’état

The Nazi Party lead by Adolf Hitler tried but ultimately failed to seize power unlawfully in Munich. This time Hitler and other party leaders were arrested and the coup filed. Hitler and the Nazi party gained power eventually in 1933.

November 9, 1938: Reichskristallnacht / Night of Broken Glass

In series of coordinated deadly attacks against Jews throughout Nazi Germany and Austria, synagogues and Jewish property were burned and destroyed on a large scale. Reichskristallnacht is viewed as part of Nazi Germany’s broader racial policy, and the beginning of the Final Solution and The Holocaust.

November 9, 1989: Fall of the Wall

The fall of the Berlin Wall ended German separation into two states (since 1945) and started a series of events that ultimately led to German reunification in 1990.


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