Dusseldorf is the capital city of the state or North Rhine-Westphalia. Elevated 45 meters above sea level, it is divided by the Rhine River. The Altstadt ( the Old Town) is situated on the east bank of the river and the modern, commercial part of the city is on the western bank. It was created as a subdivision of the Prussian Rhineland when Prussia reformed its administrative policies in 1815. In 1822 the Regierungsbezirk Kleve was incorporated into Regierungbezirk Dusseldorf.
Dusseldorf was first established as a city in the early twelfth century under the emperor Friedrich Barbarossa, the north of which was a military outpost where soldiers looked over the Rhine. It became a part of Prussia in 1815. Despite suffering in the Thirty Years’ War and the War of the Spanish Succession, it has done remarkably well for itself, thanks to Elector Johann Wilhelm II. Most of the destruction caused by the World War II was reconstructed. It is now a banking center of the state with a huge wholesale market and many iron, steel, glass, chemical and textile industries.
Dusseldorf is a center of fashion and art. It has more than 100 art galleries and many museums. The city has wide streets which are lined with shops made for tourists. These become main tourist attractions along with many wide squares and riverside walkways. Dusseldorf has many places to visit. It has three harbors on the Rhine. With a rich past and history, there are many places worth visiting here. Monuments like the Lambertuskirche, the Old Town hall, Jagethof Castle, etc. are the testaments of its illustrious past.
History of Dusseldorf
Dusseldorf is one of the richest and wealthiest cities in Germany. Although it is leading industrial and business hub today, people should know about the past history of the city in detail. It is a small village located on the banks of the River Dussel during the 7th and 8th century AD. The farming and fishing settlements started to grow up around the meeting of Dussel River and Rhine River. At the same time, most Romans ignored the village since it is a marshy Rhine region. As a result, the village didn’t emerge as a city until 10th century.
How Dusseldorf developed into a small city?
Dukes of Berg took over the control of Dusseldorf in 1186. However, the village became a town in 1288 after it was given city status by Count Adolf VIII of Berg. It declared as the regional capital of the Duchy of Berg in 1380 that grew at a rapid rate. It became a significant trade center due to the River shine. The town soon developed into a small town by the end of 14th century and many buildings were built during that time and one of them include the Church of St. Lambertus.
Early modern history of Dusseldorf
In 1609, Dusseldorf came under the control of Palatine-Neuberg after a long battle with Berg’s family. They made Dusseldorf as their main place of residence which became the capital city in 1614. The city developed itself as a leading hub for trade as well as culture during this period under the reign of Johann William II. Moreover, the ruling dynasty of the city used their wealth for encouraging arts and other things. Dusseldorf city became a flourishing royal residence and cultural city under duke’s leadership who died in 1716. It grew into an important city during the 18th century.
Dusseldorf after 18th century
Dusseldorf face threats from French troops after 1802 and the wars by Napoleon brought huge damage to the city. However, he was defeated at waterloo and the city came under the control of Prussia in 1815 and Engelbert Schramm became the mayor. The city developed into one of the richest cities in Germany due to speedy industrialization. It became a hub for mining, manufacturing, oil, and other businesses that made the city an important finance center. In 1838, Bergisch-Märkische railway station opened in Dusseldorf and many railway stations were constructed after 1841 that developed the city. In 1876, trams began their operations in the city for transportation purposes. The population of the city also increased between 1882 and 1892.
The history of Dusseldorf in mid-19th century and 20th century
Dusseldorf city saw huge development during the mid-19th century. On the other hand, it saw massive destruction during the World War II. The US troops captured the city in 1945 and became the capital city of a new state called North Rhine-Westphalia. At the same time, the old town was restored to its original shape after the World War II. There are several annual trade shows organized at the Messe Exhibition center in the city after 1947 to tell about the success story of the city.
Places to visit in Dusseldorf
- Konigsallee: Konigsallee is Dusseldorf’s most austere shopping arena. This long avenue of the posh area was designed in 1802 and even now continues to attract people and tourists with a brilliant collection of wonderful boutiques, luxurious shopping places, art galleries, along with numerous food joints. It extends up to 31 meters, along both sides of the old town moat. It starts from Graf-Adolf- Platz and stretches till the Hofgarten in north, where it ends at the Triton Fountain.
- Old Town: Altstadt or the Old Town Dusseldorf is on the east side of the Rhine. Rathaus (the Old Town Hall) and a large statue of Johann Wilhelm II in the Marktplatz are well preserved, dominant tourist attractions here.
- Castle Tower: Not much has remained of the old castle that once looked over the entire city, except the castle tower or Schlossturm in Burgplatz on the banks of the Rhine. The tower also has one of the country’s oldest and best marine museums – Schiffahrts Museum.
- North Rhine-Westphalia Art Collection: Also known as Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfales spreads across three areas in Dusseldorf. K20,the largest cluster, is found in Grabbeplatz, and is a vast gallery with numerous examples of modern art. K21, in the Standehaus building, is the second collection with displays paintings,as well as sculptures and films of the modern style. The third one hosts temporary exhibits at Schmela Haus.
Visit Dusseldorf for the experience of a lifetime.