Biography of Ernst Reuter
Ernst Reuter’s name is inextricably linked with Berlin during the inter-war period. Other aspects of his biography are less widely known, however: before becoming one of Germany’s most famous social democrats, for example, Reuter was a member of the Communist Party for a number of years. He also founded the Berliner Verkehrsbetriebe (the city’s municipal transport company), and was Lord Mayor of Magdeburg in the early 1930s.
During his years in Berlin, Ernst Reuter had an extraordinary impact on the city. Traces of his legacy can be found everywhere, even if they do not always stand out at first glance. With the new “Ernst Reuter Archives Foundation” thematic layer of the free berlinHistory app, users can now discover the locations where Ernst Reuter had an impact and the places where he is remembered with their own smartphone.
Ernst Reuter’s legacy, which is held by Berlin’s Landesarchiv, contains more than just letters, manuscripts of speeches, and official documents. Alongside a variety of photos, captivating objects from Reuter’s everyday life can also be found, including suitcases, walking sticks, cigar boxes, and a selection of berets – one of the trademarks of the former Governing Mayor.
In its two publication series, the Ernst Reuter Archives Foundation deals with a wide variety of topics linked to Ernst Reuter’s life as well as the history of Berlin and Germany in the twentieth century. In addition to studies of Reuter’s political impact, the archive also holds publications discussing the Weimar Republic, the years of Germany’s division, and the history of the Berlin Republic.