Birkenkopf "rubble hill" ("Scherbelino") in Stuttgart

Pictures and text by Mark R. Hatlie

These pictures were taken on 27 December, 2006. This hill located in the south west of Stuttgart was made significantly higher by heaping up the rubble from Suttgart after the war. There is a path going up to the top and it is now a popular area for short hikes. It is refered to locally as "Monte Scherbelino", a jocular Italian-sounding name based on the German word Scherbe, meaning "shard" - "Mountain of shards". It is not unlike the Wallberg rubble hill in Pforzheim.


This sign is at the bottom of the trail.
"BIRKENKOPF / orginally 471 meters above sea level / now 51.2 meters above sea level / raised 40.2 meters from 1953 to 1957 / by piling up 1.5 million cubic meters of rubble from Stuttgart which had been 45% destroyed by 53 air attacks during the Second World War" ("BIRKENKOPF / ursprunglich 471 m über NN / heute 51,20 m über NN / Erhöhung um 40,20 m 1953-1957 / durch Aufschüttung von 1,5 Millionen Kubikmeter Trummerschutt aus der in 53 Luftangriffen im 2. Weltkrieg zu 45% zerstörten Stadt Stuttgart".
The path winds up the hill.
There is some artwork on the way up, or what is left of artwork.
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The cross on the top is already visible.
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The first over signs of rubble come into view.
Apparently, particularly decorative pieces of architecture were chosen for the visible sections.
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This plaque reads, "This hill / after the Second World War / built up from the / ruins of the city / stands / in memory of the victims / and as a warning to the living" ("Dieser Berg / nach dem Zweiten Weltkrieg / aufgetürmt aus den / Trümmern der Stadt / steht / den Opfern zum Gedächnis / den Lebenden zur Mahnung").
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There are some pretty views of the city.
At the top, there is a central space probably used for memorial or religious services.
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These photos were taken right after Christmas. The wreath is probably left over from the National Day of Mourning in November. The ribbon reads, "In honored memory" ("In ehrendem Gedächnis").
The plaque reads, "This cross was erected by the united church congregations of Stuttgart on 19 November, 2003 (Day of Prayer and Repentence). Citizens of Stuttgart and especially the Beautification Association contributed to covering the costs. The cross was made by Böhmler Metallbau, Eugen Flachs Bauunternehmung, Leonhardt Andra & Partner" ("Dieses Kreuz ließ die Evangelische Gesamtkirchengemeinde Stuttgart zum 19.11.03 (Buß- und Bettag) aufrichten. Stuttgarter Bürgerinnen und Bürger sowie in besonderer Weise der Verschönerungsverein Stuttgart trugen mit Spenden zur Finanzierung bei. Die Ausführung lag bei Böhmler Metallbau, Eugen Flachs Bauunternehmung, Leonhardt Andra & Partner").
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In some places it is obvious that the rubble was not simply dumped, but arranged for display, here supported by metal supports.
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This shows the same stones from the front.

The visit to this location was paid for by a research grant from the
American Public University System.
"Educating those who serve."



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