Remagen and the bridge that decided World War II

Curious that a bridge that no longer exists is a tourist place, but the importance of the Remagen Bridge in World War II means that it continues to be an icon.

Today we are going to talk about a city and, more specifically, about a bridge in this city: the remagen bridge. A bridge that is one of the most important insofar as it was the protagonist of a fundamental event in the modern history of our civilization, a bridge that for that very reason has its tourist interest. And yet it is a bridge that no longer exists.

As we said, we are now talking about the Remagen bridge or the ludendorff bridge. We have to situate ourselves in Germany, in a city on the banks of the Rhine within the state of Rhineland Palatinate, south of the famous Cologne and Bonn. A city, Remagen, which has a beautiful church, apollinariskirchebuilt in neo-Gothic style in the XIX century but on a hill full of history, because there came to be a Roman temple. And yet, the most famous thing about this city is still that bridge that no longer exists.

And it is that the year 1945, the US Army crossed the Rhine over that bridge, which was the definitive breakthrough for the end of World War II in Europe. We are not going to go into details of history and military tactics (on which you have many books and films dedicated exclusively to this moment of the conflict), but basically the German army, on Hitler’s orders, destroyed all the bridges they could to prevent their rival crossed to the other shore, and yet he did not have time to destroy this oneor at least not completely.

Why the Remagen Bridge collapsed soon after. Despite resisting a first demolition attempt and several subsequent bombardments in all imaginable ways, the Lunderdorff Bridge collapsed permanently, curiously when American engineers were working on it to ensure its stability. And that’s as far as the story of Rudy, a bridge that Germany built during World War I to bring resources to the front and that in the second great war conflict of the 20th century it served the same purpose, although in favor of the opposite side.

The only thing left standing of the Remagen Bridge are the towers that supported it. While those on one shore have gone on sale due to their defective state, those on the other shore, the one next to the town, have housed the Remagen Bridge Peace Museum since 1980, where you can find an exhibition that details, in detail and logically in more depth than what we have done here, the events of those days, which history remembers as the Battle of Remagen. In addition to viewing military memorabilia that was collected and stored in the area, it can be purchased in the gift shop a real piece of bridge.

So that you can see how curious history is and how it repeats itself, in the same place where the end of the Second World War was decided in favor of the allies, almost two thousand years before, Julius Caesar crossed the Rhine and defeated the Germanic peoples, as part of the great conflict known as the Gallic Wars. Thus, in Remagen there is also a Roman Museum, dedicated to these historical events and to the fort that was installed to defend that border crossing and that remained there for several centuries.

Photo 1 | Flickr – Onnola
Photo 2 | Wikimedia Commons

Germany reimage Rhineland-Palatinate Sights #history #bridges