The Berlin Wall was a wall separating East Berlin from West Berlin. It was constructed as a way of preventing East Germans from entering the Western side. This 27 mile barrier consisted of two concrete walls. Between these two walls there was a ‘death strip’ approximately 160 yards wide.
This death strip is named so because it contained hundreds of watchtowers, miles of anti-vehicle trenches, guard dog runs, floodlights and trip-wire machine guns. The construction of Berlin Wall began on August 13th 1961. It is also referred to as the Iron Curtain.
Fast Facts: –
- A total 136 people died trying to cross the Berlin Wall during its existence. The west side of this wall was covered in graffiti but the east side was not.
- More than 5,000 people escaped by going over and under the wall. The first defector to escape the wall was Corporal Conrad Schumann.
- Before the construction of this wall, approximately 3.5 million East Germans defected.
- This wall also encircled the city of West Berlin and stretched approximately 100 miles.
- There were checkpoints along the wall where people could cross over. The most famous was Checkpoint Charlie.
- Official demolition of the Berlin Wall began in the summer of 1990. More than 40,000 wall sections were recycled and used for German reconstruction projects.
- All the border controls ended on July 1st 1990 and Germany became one country again on October 3rd 1990.
- A piece of the wall stands in the bathroom of a Las Vegas Casino.
- The demolition of the wall also helped to put an end to the Cold War.