In 1940, to supply the buildings on the Obersalzberg of electricity and heat, a huge coal storage was built near Hitler’s Berghof, by Italian workers. The bunker was built against the slope of the mountain, under the Eagle’s nest, just opposite of Herman Göring’s residence. The costs went sky high when Martin Bormann decided that the facade of the bunker had to be done all over again for an amazing 77.000 Reichsmark in total.
The storage is 38 meters wide, 20 meters deep and about 20 meters high. With it’s huge proportions it could hold 10.000 cubic meters of coal, which is somewhere between 3,500 to 4,000 tons.
Delivery trucks dumped their loads through the roof of the storage bunker from the high road above. Smaller trucks could pick up their loads at the bottom from the storage and delivered the coal to various buildings of the complex. The main heating plant was situated at the SS barracks in the center field, but other buildings had their own heating systems as well, so there was a steady demand.
In 1945 the coal was set on fire, either by retreating SS troops or by advancing Allied soldiers. It burned from early May 1945 until October 1945, an astonishing half year long!
Visit the coal storage
The Coal storage bunker, or Koksbunker, is in relative good shape. Some of the original wooden doors are still present. On top of the bunker the decay is visible, and it looks like it’s about to collapse. Therefore it is fenced off and there are multiple warning signs to keep you of the roof or out of the bunker itself.
Opposite of the Coal storage bunker was Adolf Hitler’s greenhouse. Hitler was a vegetarian, so it was obvious there was a need of fresh vegetables near the Berghoff. Martin Bormann therefore ordered to build a Greenhouse, or “Gewächshaus” in German, between hotel zum Türken and his own house. It was a glass house with a small building on one end, which was used for growing mushrooms.
In 1945 the Greenhouse took a direct hit in a bombardment, it’s remains are completely removed except the foundations.
This concrete wall, the foundation of the greenhouse, is now a barrier between a hotel and its car park. Just below this car park is a road that leads right by the Hotel zum Türken towards the Berghoff. Here is the only remaining evidence left of the Bormann’s residence. An escape door from a tunnel that used to lead to the Bormann house can be found here.
Bormann’s house is gone, destroyed in a 1945 surprise bombardment. A hotel stands on it’s place now.
If you like to read more from our trip to the Obersalzberg you can follow these links: