SS-Barracks – Nuremberg, Germany


SS-Barracks Frankenstrasse Nuremberg
Facade of the enormous former SS-Barracks at the Frankenstrasse in Nuremberg – photo 2012

Originally there was no plan for an SS-Barracks building in Nuremberg. But when Hitler declared Nuremberg the base for the annual NSDAP Rally in 1933, the SS-organization asked specifically for a barrack close to the NSDAP Party Rally grounds to accommodate their members during their stay. It was decided to construct a building at the Frankenstrasse. Architect Frans Ruff designed the complex and by 1936 it was finished.

SS-Barracks aerial
Aerial of the former SS-Barracks – courtesy Wikipedia

The barracks were among the biggest buildings ever build by the National Socialist Party. The central main building had a “Portal of Honour” and two side wings built around a courtyard. Apart from the main building several smaller buildings were constructed on the complex grounds as well.

SS Barrack Nuremberg
The former SS-Barracks building at the Frankenstrasse in Nuremberg now Federal Office for Migration and Refugees – photo 2016

Waffen-SS training center

The barracks would however never accommodate SS-members for the purpose of NSDAP rally’s. With war coming closer, the complex quickly became a Waffen-SS center for design of communication equipment and training of it’s radio operators.

Starting from May 1941, prisoners from the Dachau concentration camp were accommodated and put to work in various jobs inside the building. In June 1943 prisoners were relocated to the Flossenbürg concentration camp.

SS-Barracks facade
View of the entrance of the former SS Barracks in Nuremberg. The stand that supported the Nazi Eagle on the facade is still there – photo 2012
SS-Barracks Nuremberg 1940
The SS-Barracks in 1940 – Photo courtesy Nuremberg Municipal Archives

After World War Two

On 18 April 1945 the building was captured by the American 45th Infantry Division and instantly renamed to “The Merrell Barracks”, after soldier Joseph F. Merrell who fell the same day. The same year it was used to accommodate liberated forced laborers for a period of time.
From 1948 to September 1992 the barracks were the home of the Second US Armored Cavalry Regiment, util they were deployed in the First Gulf War.

The complex given back to German Authorities, who put the former SS-Barracks main building under a preservation order as a monument. Nowadays it is the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees.

Visit

The former SS barracks, now the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees was closed when we visited Nuremberg. A source told us there is an area open to the public in the main hall with more information about the history of the building.


1 thought on “SS-Barracks – Nuremberg, Germany

Marvin lovell on

Was stationed there in 85 thru 88 b 3 bn 5 fa. Before they rebuilt the war damage. Out side my section room was a few dozen bullet holes out side the window facing general south. Odd that the 45 inf div had a swastika for a patch and they got revenge against the reason why they had to change to a thunderbird because of the Nazis.

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