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The Munich Documentation Centre for the History of National Socialism

Learning and remembering the history of National Socialism

On 1 May 2015, the new Munich Documentation Centre for the History of National Socialism opened as a place of education and remembrance documenting and addressing the crimes of the Nazi dictatorship and their origins, manifestations and consequences right up to the present day. 

NS-Dokumentationszentrum München, March 2015 | Photo: Jens Weber

As the place where the NSDAP was founded, Munich is associated more than any other German city with the rise of National Socialism. The former ‚Capital of the Movement’ played a pioneering role in the establishment of the Nazi regime of terror and was home to the Nazi party apparatus.

The Documentation Centre has been built on the site of the former ‚Brown House’, once the headquarters of the National Socialist German Workers’ Party (NSDAP). The new construction is designed to be an open and lively forum of information and discussion.

The permanent exhibition documents the history of National Socialism in Munich, the city’s special role in the Nazi system of terror and Munich’s difficulties in confronting its past after 1945. As well as the permanent exhibition, there are also a series of special exhibitions, a learning centre, a varied programme of events and various educational resources.

The central principle underlying the exhibition and the Documentation Centre’s educational concept being to acknowledge, learn about and understand the history of this location. The key questions that the Documentation Centre poses to visitors are: “What does this have to do with me?” and  “Why should this still concern me today?”

The initiative to build a Munich Documentation Centre came from committed citizens of Munich. The construction costs, amounting to 28.2 million euros, were shared equally by the City of Munich, the State of Bavaria and the German Federal Government. The State of Bavaria has made the site available, and the City of Munich will bear the operating costs.

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