This photograph attests to the tremendous military pomp that accompanied the unveiling of this famous symbol of Germany’s triumph over France two years earlier. The Victory Column, some 200 feet high, had actually been designed in 1865 by the architect Heinrich Strack (1805–1880) as a memorial to the Prussian victory over Denmark in 1864. But work on the monument stopped when the Austro-Prussian War broke out in June 1866 and then again (after work had restarted in 1869) when war with France was declared in 1870. The 1873 inauguration of the Victory Column was held on Sedan Day, the de facto national holiday celebrating Germany’s victory at the Battle of Sedan on September 1–2, 1870.

Dedication Ceremonies for the Berlin Victory Column (September 2, 1873)


Source: The unveiling of the Berlin Victory Column. Photograph (September 2, 1873).
bpk-Bildagentur, image number 30013223. For rights inquiries, please contact Art Resource at requests@artres.com (North America) or bpk-Bildagentur at kontakt@bpk-bildagentur.de (for all other countries).

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