Stralsund (German pronunciation: [ˈʃtʁaːlzʊnt]), (Swedish: Strålsund) is a Hanseatic town in the Pomeranian part of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Germany. It is located at the Southern coast of the Strelasund, a sound of the Baltic Sea separating the island of Rügen from the mainland.
The Strelasund Crossing with its two bridges and several ferry services connects Stralsund with Rügen. The Western Pomeranian town has been the capital of the Vorpommern-Rügen district since the 2011 district reforms. It is the fourth-largest city of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern and, together with Greifswald, Stralsund forms an Oberzentrum, one of four high-level urban centers of the region.
Stralsund was granted city rights in 1234 and was one of the most prospering members of the medieval Hanseatic League. In 1628, during the Thirty Years' War, Stralsund came under Swedish rule and remained so until the upheavals of the Napoleonic Wars. In the 19th century it became part of Prussia and Germany. Since 2002, Stralsund's old town with its rich heritage is honored as a UNESCO World Heritage, along with Wismar in Mecklenburg.
The main industries of Stralsund are shipyards, fishing, mechanical engineering, and, to an increasing degree, tourism, life sciences, services and high tech industries, especially information technology and biotechnology.
Old town of Stralsund as seen from St. Mary's church
Coat of arms
Location of Stralsund within Vorpommern-Rügen district
|• Lord Mayor||Alexander Badrow (CDU)|
|• Total||38.97 km2 (15.05 sq mi)|
|Elevation||13 m (43 ft)|
|• Density||1,500/km2 (3,900/sq mi)|
|Time zone||CET/CEST (UTC+1/+2)|
18435, 18437, 18439
Its annual precipitation is 656 mm (25.8 inches) and comparatively low, falling within the lowest third of all precipitation values in Germany. The driest month is February; the most precipitation falls in July. The precipitation varies relatively moderately throughout the year. Only 40% of weather stations in Germany exhibit lower seasonal variation.
The town lies on the sound of Strelasund, a strait of the Baltic Sea. Its geographic proximity to the island of Rügen, whose only fixed link to the mainland, the Strelasund Crossing, runs between Stralsund and the village of Altefähr, has given Stralsund the sobriquet "Gateway to the Island of Rügen" (Tor zur Insel Rügen). Stralsund is located close to the Western Pomerania Lagoon Area National Park.
Stralsund's town borough includes municipal forest and three municipal ponds (the Knieperteich, Frankenteich and Moorteich. The three ponds and the Strelasund lend the Old Town, the original settlement site and historic center of the town, a protected island ambience. The highest point of the town is the Galgenberg ("Gallows Hill") on its western approaches.
The town's territory covers an area of 38.97 km², which makes Stralsund, with its nearly 58,000 inhabitants one of the most densely populated towns in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania (1,480 inhabitants per km²).
The borough of the Hanseatic town of Stralsund is divided into as follows:
(as of Dec. 2015)
|01||Altstadt (Old Town)||5,942|
|012||Altstadt||Hafeninsel (Harbour Island)||24|
In the Middle Ages the Stralsund area formed part of the West Slavic Principality of Rügen. At that time the Dänholm isle and fishing village, both at the site of the latter town, were called Strale or Stralow, Polabian for "arrow" (this meaning underlies the town's coat of arms, which shows an arrow). The full Polabian name is Strzałów.
In the course of German Ostsiedlung, many German settlers, gentry and merchants were invited to settle in the principality, and they eventually populated the Strale settlement. Merchants from other countries as well as locals were attracted to the area and made up one third of the town's population. The Danish navy used the isle as well. When the settlement had grown to town size, prince Wizlaw I of Rügen granted Lübeck law to "our town Stralow" in 1234, although a significant settlement had existed long before the formal founding. In 1240, when the prince gave additional land to the town, he called it Stralesund.
The success of the settlement challenged the powerful Free City of Lübeck, which burnt Stralsund down in 1249. Afterwards the town was rebuilt with a massive town wall having 11 town gates and 30 watchtowers. The Neustadt, a town-like suburb, had merged with Stralsund by 1361. Schadegard, a nearby twin town to Stralsund also founded by Wizlaw I, though not granted German law, served as the principal stronghold and enclosed a fort. It was given up and torn down by 1269 under pressure from the Stralsund Bürger.
In 1293 Stralsund became a member of the Hanseatic League. A total of 300 ships flying the flag of Stralsund cruised the Baltic Sea in the 14th century. In 1325 the Principality of Rügen became part of the Duchy of Pomerania, Stralsund however maintained a considerable independence.
In the 17th century opposing forces in the Thirty Years' War fought over Stralsund. In the Battle of Stralsund (1628), the Imperial (Catholic) forces commanded by Albrecht von Wallenstein besieged the town after the council refused to accept the Capitulation of Franzburg of November 1627. Stralsund resisted with Danish and Swedish support. The Swedish garrison in Stralsund was the first on German soil in history. With the Treaty of Stettin (1630), the town became one of two major Swedish forts in the Duchy of Pomerania, alongside Stettin (now Szczecin, Poland).
After the war, the Peace of Westphalia (1648) and the Treaty of Stettin (1653) made Stralsund part of Swedish Pomerania. Lost to Brandenburg in the Battle of Stralsund (1678), it reverted to Sweden in the Treaty of Saint-Germain-en-Laye (1679). In the Great Northern War in 1715 Charles XII led the defence of Stralsund for a year against the united European armies. Stralsund remained under Swedish control until the Battle of Stralsund (1807), when Napoleon Bonaparte's army occupied it. Seized by Ferdinand von Schill's freikorps in 1809, it subsequently reverted to French control, with Schill killed in action. With the Congress of Vienna (1815), Stralsund became a part of the Prussian Province of Pomerania and the seat of a government region resembling the former Swedish Pomerania.
Following the First World War Stralsund suffered the same sort of political unrest and unemployment that afflicted much of Germany. In May 1919 Stralsund workers clashed with police, and martial law was declared. In the early 1920s the Independent Social Democratic Party (USPD) became the strongest party in Stralsund, but its political fortunes waned rapidly, and in September 1922 it reunited with the Social Democratic Party (SPD).
In the national parliamentary election of May 1924, the conservative German National People's Party (DNVP) polled 8,547 votes in Stralsund, the SPD 3,534, the Communists 1,825 and the German People's Party (DVP) of Foreign Minister Gustav Stresemann 1,417. However, in keeping with national trends, Hitler's National Socialists made rapid gains in the late 1920s, and by the time of the last free national election in July 1932 the Nazis polled twice as many votes in Stralsund as the SPD.
During the Nazi period (1933–1945), Stralsund's military installations expanded, and a naval training base opened on the nearby island of Dänholm. In World War II the city was subjected to repeated Allied bombing. Attacks by the U.S. Army Air Forces in 1944 killed some 800 Stralsunders and destroyed an estimated 8,000 dwellings. The 354th Rifle Division of the Red Army occupied Stralsund on April 28, 1945 – 10 days before the end of the war in Europe. Approximately half its population had fled.
During the period of the German Democratic Republic (GDR), Stralsund saw the construction of numerous Plattenbau prefabricated apartment blocks. Its economic life centered on the now state-owned shipyard, which largely focussed on building ships for the Soviet Union.
After German reunification in 1990, the city's historic old town was thoroughly restored, and Communist-era apartment blocks were renovated and upgraded. In 2002 the old towns of Stralsund and Wismar, some 120 km to the west, were listed as UNESCO world heritage sites. Stralsund's shipyard was privatized, and thereafter specialized in constructing container ships.
|UNESCO World Heritage Site|
Stralsund: Old Market Square with the Town Hall and the Nikolaikirche
|Part of||Historic Centres of Stralsund and Wismar|
|Criteria||Cultural: ii, iv|
|Inscription||2002 (26th Session)|
|Buffer zone||340 ha|
The centre of Stralsund has a wealth of historic buildings. Since 1990, large parts of the historic old town have been renovated with private and public capital, and with the support of foundations. As a result of the contempt for historic buildings in East Germany many houses were threatened by ruin. The Old Town in particular offers a rich variety of historic buildings, with many former merchants' houses, churches, streets and squares. Of more than 800 listed buildings in Stralsund, more than 500 are designated as individual monuments in the Old Town. In twenty years, from the Wende (turning point) in 1990 to November 2010, 588 of the more than 1,000 old buildings were completely refurbished, including 363 individual monuments. Because of its historical and architectural significance, in 2002 Stralsund's old town together with the old town of Wismar were added to entitled the UNESCO World Cultural Heritage list as the "Historic Centres of Stralsund and Wismar".
The ensemble of buildings on the Old Market Square includes the St. Nicholas Church; the Town Hall (Rathaus), one of the most important secular buildings of North German Brick Gothic architecture; the Artushof, the Wulflamhaus, the Commandantenhus, the Gewerkschaftshaus and a new apartment complex.
The historic houses with their distinctive gables, often renovated at a high financial cost, dominate the scene in the streets of the Old Town. The former Swedish Government Palace is now home to the town construction department. The Museum of Cultural History Museum in Mönchstrasse, in one of the most important surviving original houses of the Hanseatic era, was refurbished with funds from the German Foundation for Monument Conservation It offers a guide to understanding the town's history over seven centuries.
Three large medieval Brick Gothic buildings – St. Mary's Church, St. Nicholas' Church and St. James Church, point to the medieval significance of Stralsund. Today St. James' is used purely as a cultural venue, its parish being served now by the Church of the Holy Spirit, which also dates from the 14th century. Two other churches on the Old Market Square and the Neuer Markt are still used for church services. The tower of St. Mary's on the Neuer Markt offers a panoramic view over Stralsund and the island of Rügen.
St. John's Abbey, (the Johanniskloster), a Franciscan monastery from 1254, now houses the Stralsund Town Archives. Regular cultural events also take place here, such as open-air theater productions.
The Gothic abbey of St. Anne and St. Bridget (Kloster St. Annen und Brigitten) in Schillstrasse was established around 1560 from the merger of the abbey of St. Anne (1480) and the double abbey of Mariakron (1421).
The Abbey of St. Jürgen (Kloster St. Jürgen am Strande) on Mönchstrasse was mentioned in 1278 for the first time. It served in the 14th century as an old people's home. In 1743 a new building, the Kleines St. Jürgen Kloster, was built at Kniepertor and the site was extended in 1754 to create old people's flats and in 1841 for widow's apartments.
First mentioned in 1256, the Heilgeistkloster is now the Hospital of the Holy Spirit.
Ferries to Hiddensee and Altefähr, as well as harbor tour boats, dock at the port. In the summer months the port is a berthing places for river cruisers. There are several yacht harbors and marinas near the Old Town. Hundreds of yachts and boats tie up along the north mole in summer. Architecturally the pilot station and the harbor warehouse (Hafenspeicher), as well as the silhouette of the Old Town, form a unique tableau of different historical eras. The barque and former sailor's training ship, Gorch Fock is another tourist attraction at the harbor.
The Fachhochschule Stralsund is a University of Applied Sciences with a modern campus, north of the old town at the Strelasund. It has around 2,500 students and is among the best ranked public universities in Germany in various fields, especially in economics. Other university departments are Mechanical Engineering, Electrical Engineering and Information Technology. The FH Stralsund also offers international study programs, such as Leisure and Tourism Management and Baltic Management Studies (international business management).
Stralsund is linked to the A20 motorway (towards Berlin and Hamburg), via the B96n dual-carriageway. Other major roads include the B105 (beginning in the town centre and continuing to Rostock) and the B96 (major road to Rügen) and the B194 to the town of Grimmen.
Town buses are run by SWS (Stadtwerke Stralsund).
Stralsund is twinned with:
The Battle of Stralsund on 31 May 1809 was a battle during the War of the Fifth Coalition, part of the Napoleonic Wars, between Ferdinand von Schill's freikorps and Napoleonic forces in Stralsund. In a "vicious street battle", the freikorps was defeated and Schill was killed in action.Blockade of Stralsund
The Blockade of Stralsund occurred during the Seven Years' War when a Prussian force invested the Swedish garrison of Stralsund, the capital of Swedish Pomerania. Rather than lay formal siege to the port, the Prussians cut it off by land and blockaded it. They were unable to cut it off by sea, owing to a lack of a Prussian fleet, and eventually the blockade was abandoned when the bulk of Prussian forces were withdrawn to fight in other theatres.Hans-Joachim Lück
Hans-Joachim Lück (born 22 June 1953) is a German rower who competed for East Germany in the 1976 Summer Olympics.
He was born in Stralsund. In 1976 he was a crew member of the East German boat which won the gold medal in the eight event.List of towns in Western Pomerania
The List of towns in Vorpommern includes all towns in present-day German Pomerania, also called Western Pomerania, and thus excludes towns which lie west of the Oder river, but east of the Oder-Neisse line (Stettiner Zipfel area), and thus historically are associated also with Vorpommern. For these towns, see List of towns in Farther Pomerania.
German Western Pomerania had a population of about 470,000 in 2012 (districts of Vorpommern-Rügen and Vorpommern-Greifswald combined) - while the Polish districts of the region had a population of about 520,000 in 2012 (cities of Stettin, Swinemünde and Police County combined). So overall, about 1 million people live in the historical region of Western Pomerania today, while the Stettin agglomeration reaches even further.
For a list of all urban municipalities in the modern German state, see List of cities in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern.Lüssow, Nordvorpommern
Lüssow is a municipality in the Vorpommern-Rügen district, in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Germany.Mecklenburg-Vorpommern
Mecklenburg-Vorpommern (German: [ˈmeːklənbʊʁk ˈfoːɐ̯pɔmɐn], abbreviated MV), also known by its anglicized name Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, is a state of Germany. Of the country's 16 states, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern ranks 14th in population, 6th in area, and 16th in population density. Schwerin is the state capital and Rostock is the largest city. Other major cities include Neubrandenburg, Stralsund, Greifswald, Wismar and Güstrow.
The state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern was established in 1945 after World War II through the merger of the historic regions of Mecklenburg and the Prussian Western Pomerania by the Soviet military administration in Allied-occupied Germany. Mecklenburg-Vorpommern became part of the German Democratic Republic in 1947, but was dissolved in 1952 during administrative reforms and its territory divided into the districts of Rostock, Schwerin, and Neubrandenburg. Mecklenburg-Vorpommern was re-established in 1990 following German reunification, and became one of the Federal Republic of Germany's new states.
Mecklenburg-Vorpommern's coastline on the Baltic Sea features many holiday resorts and much unspoilt nature, including the islands such as Rügen and Usedom, as well as the Mecklenburg Lake District, making the state one of Germany's leading tourist destinations. Three of Germany's fourteen national parks, as well as several hundred nature conservation areas, are in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern. The University of Rostock, established in 1419, and the University of Greifswald, established in 1456, are among the oldest universities in Europe. Mecklenburg-Vorpommern was the site of the 33rd G8 summit in 2007.Monika Kallies
Monika Kallies (later Leschhorn; born 31 July 1956) is a German rower
Kallies was born in 1956 in Stralsund and was a member of SC Dynamo Potsdam / Sportvereinigung (SV) Dynamo. At the 1975 World Rowing Championships in Nottingham she won a gold medal with the women's eight. She won a gold medal at the 1976 Summer Olympics with the women's eight.Preetz, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern
Preetz is a municipality in the Vorpommern-Rügen district, in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Germany.Rügen
Rügen (German pronunciation: [ˈʁyːɡn̩]; also lat. Rugia; Ruegen) is Germany's largest island by area. It is located off the Pomeranian coast in the Baltic Sea and belongs to the state of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania.
The "gateway" to Rügen island is the Hanseatic city of Stralsund, where it is linked to the mainland by road and railway via the Rügen Bridge and Causeway, two routes crossing the two-kilometre-wide Strelasund, a sound of the Baltic Sea.
Rügen has a maximum length of 51.4 km (from north to south), a maximum width of 42.8 km in the south and an area of 926 km². The coast is characterized by numerous sandy beaches, lagoons (Bodden) and open bays (Wieke), as well as projecting peninsulas and headlands. In June 2011, UNESCO awarded the status of a World Heritage Site to the Jasmund National Park, famous for its vast stands of beeches and chalk cliffs like King's Chair, the main landmark of Rügen island.The island of Rügen is part of the district of Vorpommern-Rügen, with its county seat in Stralsund.
The towns on Rügen are: Bergen, Sassnitz, Putbus and Garz. In addition, there are the Baltic seaside resorts of Binz, Baabe, Göhren, Sellin and Thiessow.
Rügen is very popular as a tourist destination because of its resort architecture, the diverse landscape and its long, sandy beaches.Siege of Stralsund (1628)
The Siege of Stralsund was a siege laid on Stralsund by Albrecht von Wallenstein's Imperial Army during the Thirty Years' War, from May to 4 August 1628. Stralsund was aided by Denmark and Sweden, with considerable Scottish participation. The siege ended Wallenstein's series of victories, and contributed to his downfall. The Swedish garrison in Stralsund was the first on German soil in history. The battle marked the de facto entrance of Sweden into the war.Siege of Stralsund (1711–15)
The Siege of Stralsund was a battle during the Great Northern War. The Swedish Empire defended her Swedish Pomeranian port of Stralsund against a coalition of Denmark-Norway, the Electorate of Saxony and the Tsardom of Russia, which was joined by the Kingdom of Prussia during the siege.
A first attempt to take Stralsund was made in 1711, when the allies closed in on the town. Swedish relief forced the coalition to withdraw from the fortifications, whereupon the besieging armies drew a wider ring along the lines of the Recknitz and Peene rivers. Magnus Stenbock's victory at Gadebusch for a short time distracted the allies, but after Stenbock's pursuit and subsequent defeat, Prussia as well as Hanover, ruled in personal union with Great Britain, joined the anti-Swedish alliance.
The allies agreed that Denmark should cede her claims to Bremen-Verden to Hanover, and in turn Denmark was promised the northern parts of Swedish Pomerania with Stralsund, while the southern parts were to become Prussian. In 1714, Charles XII of Sweden rode to Stralsund from his Turkish exile to lead the defense in person. From 12 July to 24 December 1715, the allies sieged the town and eventually forced its surrender. Charles XII escaped to Sweden.
Stralsund remained under Danish control until it was returned to Sweden by the Treaty of Frederiksborg.Siege of Stralsund (1807)
The Siege of Stralsund lasted from 30 January to 24 August 1807 and saw troops from the First French Empire twice attempt to capture the port city from Lieutenant General Hans Henric von Essen's
15,000-man Swedish garrison. On the first try, Marshal Édouard Adolphe Casimir Joseph Mortier blockaded the city for two months before he was called elsewhere. In his absence, the Swedes drove back the inferior blockading force. After Mortier returned and pushed Essen's troops back in turn, the two sides quickly concluded an armistice. The truce was later repudiated by King Gustav IV Adolf of Sweden, whereupon Marshal Guillaume Marie Anne Brune led 40,000 French, German, Spanish, Italian, and Dutch soldiers against the fortress. Fearfully outnumbered, the Swedes abandoned the Baltic Sea port of Stralsund to the Franco-Allies in this action during the War of the Fourth Coalition, part of the Napoleonic Wars. As a consequence, Sweden also lost the nearby island of Rügen.Stralsund (region)
The Region of Stralsund (German: Regierungsbezirk Stralsund, i.e. "government region of Stralsund") belonged to the Prussian Province of Pomerania and existed from 1818 to 1932.Stralsund Hauptbahnhof
Stralsund Hauptbahnhof is the main station in Western Pomerania and the main station for railway lines running to Hamburg, Bergen auf Rügen and Berlin in the German Hanseatic city of Stralsund. It is owned and operated by Deutsche Bahn.Stralsund–Barth Airport
Stralsund–Barth Airport (IATA: BBH, ICAO: EDBH), Ostseeflughafen Stralsund-Barth in German, is a regional airport serving the city of Stralsund and the town of Barth, Germany. It is located in a popular tourism area at the Baltic Sea (German: Ostsee) and features no scheduled traffic. However, it is extensively used for general aviation including upmarket charter traffic as well as gliding.Treaty of Stralsund (1354)
The Treaty of Stralsund, arranged on 12 February 1354, settled border disputes resulting from the wars for Rugian succession between the duchies of Mecklenburg and Pomerania.Treaty of Stralsund (1370)
The Treaty of Stralsund (24 May 1370) ended the war between the Hanseatic League and the kingdom of Denmark. The Hanseatic League reached the peak of its power by the conditions of this treaty.The war began in 1361, when Danish king Valdemar Atterdag conquered Scania, Öland, and Gotland with the major Hanseatic town Visby. In 1362, a Hanseatic counterstrike was repelled by the Danish fleet at Helsingborg, which led Hansa to accept a truce culminating in the unfavourable Treaty of Vordingborg (1365), depriving the league of much of its privileges. Unwilling to accept the treaty, the Hanseatic League, which used to be a trade league rather than a political union, raised a fleet through the Confederation of Cologne in 1367 and renewed their Swedish alliances. In the following battles, Valdemar and his Norwegian son-in-law Hakon VI were utterly defeated.The treaty was negotiated for Denmark by drost Henning Podebusk and for the Hanseatic League by the burgomasters Jakob Pleskow of Lübeck and Bertram Wulflam of Stralsund. In the treaty, the freedom of Visby was reestablished. Furthermore, Denmark had to assure the Hanseatic League of free trade in the entire Baltic Sea. This gave the Hanseatic League a monopoly on the Baltic fish trade. The league also gained the right to veto against Danish throne candidates.Vorpommern-Rügen
Vorpommern-Rügen is a district in the north of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Germany. It is bounded by (from the west and clockwise) the Baltic Sea and the districts Vorpommern-Greifswald, Mecklenburgische Seenplatte and Rostock. The district seat is the Hanseatic city of Stralsund.Vorpommern-Rügen is characterized by diverse shore line landscapes with many lagoons, beaches and cliff lines, part of them protected in the Western Pomerania Lagoon Area National Park and in the Jasmund National Park.
The area is also a very popular destination for national and international tourism, including Rügen, the biggest island of Germany, the island of Hiddensee, the Fischland-Darss-Zingst peninsula and its adjacent town of Barth with the Stralsund Barth Airport, the port of Sassnitz and the UNESCO World Heritage city of Stralsund.
The Vorpommern-Rügen district is one of the most popular places for national and international tourism in Germany, thanks to its unique protected nature, good infrastructure, popular resort architecture spas, historical towns and vast beaches at the shores of the Baltic Sea.Wilhelm Ferdinand Erichson
Dr Wilhelm Ferdinand Erichson (26 November 1809 in Stralsund – 18 December 1848 in Berlin) was a trained medical doctor and a German entomologist.
He was the author of many articles about insects mainly in Archiv für Naturgeschichte. He wrote a paper in 1842 on insect species collected at Woolnorth in Tasmania, Australia, which was the first detailed research published on the biogeography of Australian animals and was very influential in raising scientific interest in the Australian fauna.Erichson was the curator of the Coleoptera collections at the Museum fur Naturkunde in Berlin from 1834 to 1848. Erichson's Scarabaeidae classification is nearly identical to the modern one.
Towns and municipalities in Vorpommern-Rügen
Urban and rural districts in the state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern in Germany
For official site names, see each article or the List of World Heritage Sites in Germany.
Members of the Hanseatic League by quarter
Geography of Pomerania