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Between 1891 and 1914, more than a million mostly Jewish migrants from Eastern Europe had to pass through the emigrant railway station between Berlin and Spandau.

Veranstaltungen in Berlin: Raus. Raus? Raus! Flucht und Migration im 19. Jahrhundert über den Auswandererbahnhof Ruhleben
Grafik: studio lindhorst-emme + hinrichs


Before they were allowed to emigrate via the North Sea ports to the USA and other countries, their papers, finances and state of health were checked here. The barracks on the station grounds became a symbol of how migrants were treated and of the fear of disease and the influx of strangers.


When the exhibition about the emigration control station was planned, references to today's migration were already obvious. But the dynamics with which both the measures against contagious diseases and the orderly distribution of the flow of refugees in 19th-century Berlin have gained topicality could not have been foreseen. Thus the exhibition explores questions that are just as pressing today as they were over a hundred years ago. For this reason, too, after the presentation of the history(s) of the Ruhleben emigrant railway station, there is the opportunity to share your own thoughts and wishes about current events.
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