About Haus der Wannsee-Konferenz
Haus der Wannsee-Konferenz in Wannsee, Berlin, was the site of the infamous Wannsee Conference in which the Nazis planned how to carry out the ‘Final Solution’ in January 1942.
The exhibition in the house gives an insight into this criminal meeting and how the attendees put it into practice. Using original documents and both audio and visual presentations, the Haus der Wannsee-Konferenz exhibition details the genocide of European Jews.
Haus der Wannsee-Konferenz history
In 1914, a pharmaceutical manufacturer called Ernst Marlier built a new luxury villa. A few years later, a right-wing industrialist, Friedrich Minoux, took ownership of it, selling the villa to an SS foundation in 1941 who used it as a guest house.
On 20 January 1942, fifteen senior members of the Nazi government and of the SS met at Haus der Wannsee-Konferenz. Chaired by the head of the Reich Security Main Office Reinhard Heydrich, this group of men determined the course of the genocide of the Jewish people in Europe which would come to be known as the Holocaust.
Instigated by leader of the Nazis, Adolf Hitler, the Holocaust would see over 6 million Jews murdered as well as members of other minorities: homosexuals, handicapped people and anyone else considered by the Nazis to be “racially inferior”. At Wannsee, Heydrich outlined how the Jews would be sent to extermination camps in occupied Poland to be killed.
Between 1952 and 1982, the Haus der Wannsee-Konferenz was used as a school. In 1982, Berlin’s mayor made the house a memorial and by 1992 it had become an official museum and educational centre.
Haus der Wannsee-Konferenz today
Today, Haus der Wannsee-Konferenz provides a moving memorial to the Holocaust as well as an in-depth history of the rise of the Nazi party, the growth of anti-Semitism and the atrocities committed against the Jews.
Open all week between 10am and 6pm, the free exhibition includes photos and books about Jewish ghettos and everyday life there, as well as detailed information about deportation and extermination of European Jews.
At weekends, you can take a free guided tour of the house.
Getting to Haus der Wannsee-Konferenz
To reach the Haus der Wannsee-Konferenz, take the S-Bahn S1 or S7 to Wannsee, then get the 114 bus to the Haus.