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The Berlin Wall: Powerful Photos Show Life around the Brutal Divide of Germany

After World War II, Germany was divided into two portions. East Germany was controlled by the Communist German Democratic Republic (GDR), and West Germany was controlled by the US government, France, and Britain. The capital, Berlin was also divided into west and east Berlin. West Germany was booming with rapid economic growth, they had better food supply, better infrastructure, and better jobs and opportunities for the bright future. While on the other side, East Germany was struggling for basic necessities.

The majority of the people were moving to the west in search of work under West Germany’s economic miracle. The growth stopped in East Germany and more than 1.2 million people moved to the West. The communist government Nikita Khrushchev decided to build the longest walls to stop the people from moving to the west. GDR authorities officially referred to the Berlin Wall as the Anti-Fascist Protection Rampart while the West Berlin city government sometimes referred to it as the “Wall of Shame”. The construction was started on 13 August 1961.
People were still crossing the wall by climbing or using the underground tunnels, so the GDR decided to secure the wall with security guards and troops. They were patrolling day and night around the wall to stop the people. During this period thousands of people attempted to cross the wall and only a few of them succeeded. Hundreds of people were shot by the troops and guards.

Here below are some historical photos that show life around the Berlin wall from the 1960s to the late 1980s.

#1 Border situation West Berliners looking and waving to friends living in East Berlin at formerly wiener bridge in Kreuzberg district Sept. 6, 1961.

Border situation West Berliners looking and waving to friends living in East Berlin at formerly wiener bridge in Kreuzberg district Sept. 6, 1961.

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#2 A young East Berliner works on a concrete wall that was later topped by barbed wire at a sector border in the divided city on August 18, 1961.

A young East Berliner works on a concrete wall that was later topped by barbed wire at a sector border in the divided city on August 18, 1961.

People’s Police stand guard in the background as another worker mixes cement.

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#3 East Berlin workers with a power shovel destroy one of a number of cottages and single-family houses along a sparsely settled stretch of the east-west Berlin boundary in October 1961.

East Berlin workers with a power shovel destroy one of a number of cottages and single-family houses along a sparsely settled stretch of the east-west Berlin boundary in October 1961.

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#4 Tracks of the Berlin elevated railroad stop at the border of the American sector of Berlin in this air view on August 26, 1961. B

Tracks of the Berlin elevated railroad stop at the border of the American sector of Berlin in this air view on August 26, 1961. B

Beyond the fence, the Communist-ruled East Berlin side, the tracks have been removed.

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#5 West Berliners gather near the newly built Berlin Wall in August 1961.

West Berliners gather near the newly built Berlin Wall in August 1961.

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#6 West Berliners, angered by taunts from East Berlin Police, throw rocks in August 1961.

West Berliners, angered by taunts from East Berlin Police, throw rocks in August 1961.

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#7 West Germans peer over part of the newly constructed Berlin Wall while waiting for relatives to return from the eastern sector in August 1961.

West Germans peer over part of the newly constructed Berlin Wall while waiting for relatives to return from the eastern sector in August 1961.

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#8 Soldiers building the Berlin Wall as instructed by the East German authorities, in order to strengthen the existing barriers dividing East and West Berlin, 1961.

Soldiers building the Berlin Wall as instructed by the East German authorities, in order to strengthen the existing barriers dividing East and West Berlin, 1961.

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#9 East German military personnel supervising construction of the Berlin Wall in August 1961.

East German military personnel supervising construction of the Berlin Wall in August 1961.

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#10 A car rides between US tanks, in October 1961, across the famous border of the American sector in Berlin, at Checkpoint Charlie crossing point, the only one in the Berlin Wall between East

A car rides between US tanks, in October 1961, across the famous border of the American sector in Berlin, at Checkpoint Charlie crossing point, the only one in the Berlin Wall between East

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#11 Sightseers climb onto a bus to look at the newly-built Berlin Wall.

Sightseers climb onto a bus to look at the newly-built Berlin Wall.

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#12 West Berliners peering through the Berlin Wall into the Eastern sector near Check Point Charlie.

West Berliners peering through the Berlin Wall into the Eastern sector near Check Point Charlie.

The newly erected wall has no barbed wire only tubes which make it difficult to gain a handhold should anyone try to climb over.

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#13 Families and friends, once neighbors, now stand divided and wave across to each other over the Berlin wall.

Families and friends, once neighbors, now stand divided and wave across to each other over the Berlin wall.

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#14 American tanks and troops at Checkpoint Charlie, February 1961.

American tanks and troops at Checkpoint Charlie,  February 1961.

A crossing point in the Berlin Wall between the American and Soviet sectors of the city at the junction of Friedrichstrasse, Zimmerstrasse and Mauerstrasse.

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#15 Soldiers of the East German National People’s Army (NVA) erecting barbed wire fences to close off a street in preparation for the construction of the Berlin Wall, Berlin, Germany, 14th August 1961.

Soldiers of the East German National People's Army (NVA) erecting barbed wire fences to close off a street in preparation for the construction of the Berlin Wall, Berlin, Germany, 14th August 1961.

The first concrete emplacements were erected on 17th August.

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#16 West Berliners at right watch East German construction workers erect a wall across Wildenbruchstrasse and Heidelbergerstrasse in West Berlin in August 1961.

West Berliners at right watch East German construction workers erect a wall across Wildenbruchstrasse and Heidelbergerstrasse in West Berlin in August 1961.

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#17 East German soldiers, left, set up barbed wire barricades August , 13, 1961.

East German soldiers, left, set up barbed wire barricades August , 13, 1961.

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#18 An East German couple is turned away from the border, blocked by East German soldiers and barbed wire, after trying to cross into West Berlin, Aug. 13, 1961.

An East German couple is turned away from the border, blocked by East German soldiers and barbed wire, after trying to cross into West Berlin, Aug. 13, 1961.

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#19 East German tanks are lined up at Warschauer Bridge in Berlin, Germany on August 13, 1961.

East German tanks are lined up at Warschauer Bridge in Berlin, Germany on August 13, 1961.

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#20 Members of the East German military remove paving blocks on Friedrich Strasse in East Berlin August 13, 1961.

Members of the East German military remove paving blocks on Friedrich Strasse in East Berlin August 13, 1961.

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#21 People who managed to flee across the high security border.

People who managed to flee across the high security border.

Two men only dress in their swimming trunks are covered with blankets and smoking a cigarette after they managed to flee across the high-security border separating Berlin to the West at a refugee camp in West Berlin Marienfelde swimming across the river Spree on Aug. 13, 1961

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#22 Workers protected by East German police mix concrete to build walls along the sector dividing East and West Berlin August 18, 1961.

Workers protected by East German police mix concrete to build walls along the sector dividing East and West Berlin August 18, 1961.

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#23 East German build cinder block wall in East Berlin as the divided city continued in stage of unrest August 18, 1961.

East German build cinder block wall in East Berlin as the divided city continued in stage of unrest August 18, 1961.

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#24 West Berliners at right gather at barrier between east and West Berlin August 18, 1961, watching movements of East German Police.

West Berliners at right gather at barrier between east and West Berlin August 18, 1961, watching movements of East German Police.

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#25 East German National People’s Army soldiers man an unfinished part of the Berlin Wall on August 18, 1961 at the town’s sector division in Berlin, Germany.

East German National People’s Army soldiers man an unfinished part of the Berlin Wall on August 18, 1961 at the town’s sector division in Berlin, Germany.

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#26 Blocking the church – Two East German workers working on a huge 15 feet hight Wall put pieces of broken glass on the top to prevent East Berliners from escaping.

Blocking the church – Two East German workers working on a huge 15 feet hight Wall put pieces of broken glass on the top to prevent East Berliners from escaping.

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#27 Wooden boxes, used by the couple at left to overcome height of problem in Berlin August 28, 1961.

Wooden boxes, used by the couple at left to overcome height of problem in Berlin August 28, 1961.

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#28 The East Berlin authorities have put their emblems on small flags on the concrete wall at the Invalidenstrasse crossing point between the British and Russian sector border in Berlin on Sept. 9, 1961.

The East Berlin authorities have put their emblems on small flags on the concrete wall at the Invalidenstrasse crossing point between the British and Russian sector border in Berlin on Sept. 9, 1961.

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#29 West Berliners, at right, talk with East Berlin policemen through the barbed wire fence at the border in Germany in Sept. 1961.

West Berliners, at right, talk with East Berlin policemen through the barbed wire fence at the border in Germany in Sept. 1961.

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#30 Near Wiener Brucke in kreuzberg district East Berliners sitting on a warm summer day on benches and others were waving to friends in West Berlin on Sept. 6, 1961.

Near Wiener Brucke in kreuzberg district East Berliners sitting on a warm summer day on benches and others were waving to friends in West Berlin on Sept. 6, 1961.

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#31 An East Berlin policeman puts bricks in place as the Berlin Wall is heightened to 15 feet, 5 m, separating East and West Berlin, Germany, on Sept. 9, 1961.

An East Berlin policeman puts bricks in place as the Berlin Wall is heightened to 15 feet, 5 m, separating East and West Berlin, Germany, on Sept. 9, 1961.

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#32 East German soldier carries a big roll of barbed wire along the border separating the British and Soviet sectors of Berlin August 21, 1961.

East German soldier carries a big roll of barbed wire along the border separating the British and Soviet sectors of Berlin August 21, 1961.

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#33 West Berliners, at right, talk with East Berlin policemen through the barbed wire fence at the border in Germany in Sept. 1961.

West Berliners, at right, talk with East Berlin policemen through the barbed wire fence at the border in Germany in Sept. 1961.

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#34 West Berliners, with their backs to camera, watch East Berliners unload prefabricated concrete plates to reinforce the Berlin Wall at Wilhelm St. in Berlin, Germany on Sept. 12, 1961.

West Berliners, with their backs to camera, watch East Berliners unload prefabricated concrete plates to reinforce the Berlin Wall at Wilhelm St. in Berlin, Germany on Sept. 12, 1961.

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#35 East Berlin Police, behind concrete wall, spray water on area where East Germans escape into West Berlin on Sept. 14, 1961.

East Berlin Police, behind concrete wall, spray water on area where East Germans escape into West Berlin on Sept. 14, 1961.

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#36 At sector border Sebastian Strasse where the American sector borders the Soviet East Berlin workers erecting strong street lights behind the concrete border wall in Berlin Sept. 19, 1961.

At sector border Sebastian Strasse where the American sector borders the Soviet East Berlin workers erecting strong street lights behind the concrete border wall in Berlin Sept. 19, 1961.

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#37 Behind concrete wall with barbed wire east Berliners removing their furnitures in Berlin Sept. 20, 1961.

Behind concrete wall with barbed wire east Berliners removing their furnitures in Berlin Sept. 20, 1961.

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#38 East Berlin workers started to reinforce the concrete walls at sector border in Berlin Sept. 25, 1961.

East Berlin workers started to reinforce the concrete walls at sector border in Berlin Sept. 25, 1961.

Here is a long wall at sector border Zimmer Strasse with new steel bars connected with barbed wire. On the left the east sector of Berlin.

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#39 East Berliners working on cable.

East Berliners working on cable.

In the foreground, French Military Police, left, West Berlin alert police, right, and West Berlin customs officials are on guard in front of the concrete wall on the western side of the Berlin Wall in the French sector near Schoenholz, Germany, on Sept. 27, 1961. In the background behind the concrete wall and barbed wire fence are East Berliners working on cable. Beyond them, East German soldiers guard the border.

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#40 East Berliners use a crane to place concrete glass on wall along border between East and West Berlin Sept. 28, 1961. View of Zimmerstrasse near the Friedrichstrasse crossing point in the divided city.

East Berliners use a crane to place concrete glass on wall along border between East and West Berlin Sept. 28, 1961. View of Zimmerstrasse near the Friedrichstrasse crossing point in the divided city.

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#41 East Berliners use a crane to place concrete glass on wall along border between East and West Berlin Sept. 28, 1961.

East Berliners use a crane to place concrete glass on wall along border between East and West Berlin Sept. 28, 1961.

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#42 An East Berlin soldier secures a steel bar to hold the barbed wire atop the Berlin Wall on sector border in Berlin near Friedrichstrasse in Germany on Sept. 30, 1961.

An East Berlin soldier secures a steel bar to hold the barbed wire atop the Berlin Wall on sector border in Berlin near Friedrichstrasse in Germany on Sept. 30, 1961.

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#43 East Berlin laborers work on “Death Strip” which communist authorities created on their side of the border in the divided city on Oct. 1, 1961.

East Berlin laborers work on “Death Strip” which communist authorities created on their side of the border in the divided city on Oct. 1, 1961.

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#44 A West Berlin guard stands in front of the concrete wall dividing East and West Berlin at Bernauer Strasse as East Berlin workmen add blocks to the wall to increase the height of the barrier, Oct. 7, 1961.

A West Berlin guard stands in front of the concrete wall dividing East and West Berlin at Bernauer Strasse as East Berlin workmen add blocks to the wall to increase the height of the barrier, Oct. 7, 1961.

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#45 Nailed together planks are placed into position by East Berlin soldiers as they labor to reinforce trench (foreground) along the East-West border of Berlin at Neukoelln-Baumschulenweg in the southern part of the city on Oct.9, 1961.

Nailed together planks are placed into position by East Berlin soldiers as they labor to reinforce trench (foreground) along the East-West border of Berlin at Neukoelln-Baumschulenweg in the southern part of the city on Oct.9, 1961.

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#46 East German soldiers sharpen wooden stakes as they rush work to reinforce trench along Berlin’s East-West border at Neukoelln-Baumschulenweg in the southern part of the city on Oct. 9, 1961.

East German soldiers sharpen wooden stakes as they rush work to reinforce trench along Berlin’s East-West border at Neukoelln-Baumschulenweg in the southern part of the city on Oct. 9, 1961.

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#47 West Berliners watch the incidents at the U.S. Army checkpoint at the Friedrichstrasse where an American car and two sightseeing buses were barred entry by Communist East Berlin police, in Berlin on Oct. 25, 1961.

West Berliners watch the incidents at the U.S. Army checkpoint at the Friedrichstrasse where an American car and two sightseeing buses were barred entry by Communist East Berlin police, in Berlin on Oct. 25, 1961.

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#48 East German workmen guide crane lowering concrete block into position to make wall in front of Brandenburg Gate in East Berlin on Nov. 19, 1961.

East German workmen guide crane lowering concrete block into position to make wall in front of Brandenburg Gate in East Berlin on Nov. 19, 1961.

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#49 East German workmen guide crane lowering concrete block into position to make wall in front of Brandenburg Gate in East Berlin on Nov. 19, 1961.

East German workmen guide crane lowering concrete block into position to make wall in front of Brandenburg Gate in East Berlin on Nov. 19, 1961.

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#50 West Berlin police stand guard behind barbed wire along the new 250-yard massive concrete wall at Berlin’s Brandenburg Gate, Germany, on Nov. 23, 1961.

West Berlin police stand guard behind barbed wire along the new 250-yard massive concrete wall at Berlin’s Brandenburg Gate, Germany, on Nov. 23, 1961.

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#51 Workers set up a sign warning pedestrians they are leaving the American sector of Berlin, Germany, on Wiener Strasse (Vienna Street) in the district of Kreuzberg in West Berlin, on August 13, 1961.

Workers set up a sign warning pedestrians they are leaving the American sector of Berlin, Germany, on Wiener Strasse (Vienna Street) in the district of Kreuzberg in West Berlin, on August 13, 1961.

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#52 Russian (background) and American (foreground) tanks face each other at the Friedrichstrasse checkpoint in Berlin during the construction of the Berlin Wall on October 28, 1961.

Russian (background) and American (foreground) tanks face each other at the Friedrichstrasse checkpoint in Berlin during the construction of the Berlin Wall on October 28, 1961.

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#53 Barbed wire on the west side of the Brandenburg gate, put up as a “safety measure” by the British, photographed in November 1961.

Barbed wire on the west side of the Brandenburg gate, put up as a “safety measure” by the British, photographed in November 1961.

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#54 Friends reach across the barrier to touch each other in August 1961.

Friends reach across the barrier to touch each other in August 1961.

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#55 Communist People’s Police officers string barbed wire along a fence between East and West Berlin in September 1961.

Communist People’s Police officers string barbed wire along a fence between East and West Berlin in September 1961.

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#56 A young girl gazes pensively through the pane of her apartment window, which reflects the image of barbed wire fencing that tops the nearby Berlin Wall, in December 1962.

A young girl gazes pensively through the pane of her apartment window, which reflects the image of barbed wire fencing that tops the nearby Berlin Wall, in December 1962.

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#57 A refugee runs during an attempt to escape from the East German part of Berlin to West Berlin by climbing over the Berlin Wall on October 16, 1961.

A refugee runs during an attempt to escape from the East German part of Berlin to West Berlin by climbing over the Berlin Wall on October 16, 1961.

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#58 An East German VOPO (Volkspolizei) border policeman uses binoculars while standing guard on one of the bridges linking East and West Berlin, in 1961.

An East German VOPO (Volkspolizei) border policeman uses binoculars while standing guard on one of the bridges linking East and West Berlin, in 1961.

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#59 A 17-year-old East Berlin youth is helped down from the Berlin Wall by two friendly West Berlin police officers after he climbed over to freedom in October 1961.

A 17-year-old East Berlin youth is helped down from the Berlin Wall by two friendly West Berlin police officers after he climbed over to freedom in October 1961.

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#60 After East Germans jumped to freedom in the West, the windows of this building on the eastern side of the wall were bricked over. The building was later demolished, 1962.

After East Germans jumped to freedom in the West, the windows of this building on the eastern side of the wall were bricked over. The building was later demolished, 1962.

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#61 One of six West Berliners who dug a 20-inch-wide tunnel under a border street to East Berlin crawls out sometime over the weekend of June 8–10, 1962.

One of six West Berliners who dug a 20-inch-wide tunnel under a border street to East Berlin crawls out sometime over the weekend of June 8–10, 1962.

Sixteen East Berliners, relatives of the diggers, came through the tunnel dragging an infant behind them in a washbasin. The tunnel was believed to have been discovered in early June 12, a few hours after the 17 reached the West.

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#62 A 75-year-old woman is helped into Tunnel 57, through which 57 East Berlin citizens escaped to the western sector of the city on October 3 and 4, 1964.

A 75-year-old woman is helped into Tunnel 57, through which 57 East Berlin citizens escaped to the western sector of the city on October 3 and 4, 1964.

The tunnel was dug from West to East by a group of 20 students led by Joachim Neumann, from a disused bakery building on Bernauer Strasse, under the Berlin Wall, to a building 145 meters away on Strelitzer Strasse in East Berlin.

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#63 To give the impression of normality, East German authorities sent children to the base of the Berlin Wall to act as if they were at play. Berlin, 1962

To give the impression of normality, East German authorities sent children to the base of the Berlin Wall to act as if they were at play. Berlin, 1962

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#64 A dying Peter Fechter is carried away by East German border guards who shot him down when he tried to flee to the West in this August 17, 1962

A dying Peter Fechter is carried away by East German border guards who shot him down when he tried to flee to the West in this August 17, 1962

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#65 President John F. Kennedy stands before a huge crowd in West Berlin on June 26, 1963.

President John F. Kennedy stands before a huge crowd in West Berlin on June 26, 1963.

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#66 Thousands of people line up at the Schillerstrasse in Charlottenburg, Berlin, to apply for a passage slip to get across the border on December 19, 1963.

Thousands of people line up at the Schillerstrasse in Charlottenburg, Berlin, to apply for a passage slip to get across the border on December 19, 1963.

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#67 A German women hangs clothing out to dry on a line strung between a tree and the Berlin Wall, Germany, November 13, 1963

A German women hangs clothing out to dry on a line strung between a tree and the Berlin Wall, Germany, November 13, 1963

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#68 Two men open a hollow metal drum used by three West German men to bring their girlfriends over the border from East Berlin, Germany, 1965.

Two men open a hollow metal drum used by three West German men to bring their girlfriends over the border from East Berlin, Germany, 1965.

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#69 Officers inspecting the damage to the Berlin Wall, East Germany, and making preparations for its repair, after an East German rammed the Wall with an army car and successfully escaped, 1963.

Officers inspecting the damage to the Berlin Wall, East Germany, and making preparations for its repair, after an East German rammed the Wall with an army car and successfully escaped, 1963.

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#70 A hand reaches above the broken glass-covered top of the Berlin Wall in August 1961.

A hand reaches above the broken glass-covered top of the Berlin Wall in August 1961.

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#71 A West German man lifts his son to give him a view of the other side of the Berlin Wall, 1961.

A West German man lifts his son to give him a view of the other side of the Berlin Wall, 1961.

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#72 A woman, foreground, who had escaped to West Berlin, speaks to her mother — who is still in East Berlin — in August 1961.

A woman, foreground, who had escaped to West Berlin, speaks to her mother — who is still in East Berlin — in August 1961.

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#73 A West Berlin woman looks out over the Berlin Wall — reflected in her window — in 1961.

A West Berlin woman looks out over the Berlin Wall — reflected in her window — in 1961.

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#74 American forces, in foreground, face East German forces across the newly built Berlin Wall in 1961.

American forces, in foreground, face East German forces across the newly built Berlin Wall in 1961.

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#75 A crowd of West Berlin residents watches as an East German policeman patrols the Berlin Wall in August 1961.

A crowd of West Berlin residents watches as an East German policeman patrols the Berlin Wall in August 1961.

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#76 A couple enjoys a West Berlin bar as the Wall looms in the near distance in 1961

A couple enjoys a West Berlin bar as the Wall looms in the near distance in 1961

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#77 An East German mason builds up a fresh portion of the Berlin Wall in August 1961.

An East German mason builds up a fresh portion of the Berlin Wall in August 1961.

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#78 A crowd of West Berlin youths gather to protest the construction of the Berlin Wall in August 1961.

A crowd of West Berlin youths gather to protest the construction of the Berlin Wall in August 1961.

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#79 Sunlight shines on the barbed wire and blocks of the Berlin Wall in August 1961.

Sunlight shines on the barbed wire and blocks of the Berlin Wall in August 1961.

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#80 An East German policeman uses sunlight reflected off a mirror in an attempt to stop photographers from taking pictures in August 1961.

An East German policeman uses sunlight reflected off a mirror in an attempt to stop photographers from taking pictures in August 1961.

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#81 A West Berlin toddler attempts to open a sealed door of a house that has become part of the Berlin Wall in August 1961.

A West Berlin toddler attempts to open a sealed door of a house that has become part of the Berlin Wall in August 1961.

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#82 West Berlin children, from left, Peter Friedrich, 5, Katrin Kuhl, 4, and Jurgen Bottcher, 8, build a pretend Berlin Wall in a vacant lot in October 1961.

West Berlin children, from left, Peter Friedrich, 5, Katrin Kuhl, 4, and Jurgen Bottcher, 8, build a pretend Berlin Wall in a vacant lot in October 1961.

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#83 Three West Berlin police officers jump off a truck as two others run to meet them before starting their shifts on guard duty at the Berlin Wall in October 1961.

Three West Berlin police officers jump off a truck as two others run to meet them before starting their shifts on guard duty at the Berlin Wall in October 1961.

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#84 An East German teen hides in tall grass, far left, awaiting a chance to jump over the Berlin Wall in October 1961.

An East German teen hides in tall grass, far left, awaiting a chance to jump over the Berlin Wall in October 1961.

Crouching in a tangle of grass in East Berlin," wrote LIFE when this escape sequence originally ran in the magazine, "and hidden except for his face [barely visible on the left side of the pic], a boy waits to make a break over the wall he must surmount to reach the West. Nearby is a patrol of East German Vopos who will shoot to kill if they see him."

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#85 West German police look out over the Berlin Wall in order to offer their help to any potential escapees to the West in October 1961.

West German police look out over the Berlin Wall in order to offer their help to any potential escapees to the West in October 1961.

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#86 An East German teen makes his way to the West climbing over the Berlin Wall in October 1961.

An East German teen makes his way to the West climbing over the Berlin Wall in October 1961.

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#87 A 17-year-old East German orphan successfully slips through the barbed wire over the Berlin Wall to the West after being waved on by West Berlin police in October 1961.

A 17-year-old East German orphan successfully slips through the barbed wire over the Berlin Wall to the West after being waved on by West Berlin police in October 1961.

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#88 A Lebanese businessman, Edmond Khayat, carries an 85-pound wooden cross to protest the Berlin Wall in October 1961.

A Lebanese businessman, Edmond Khayat, carries an 85-pound wooden cross to protest the Berlin Wall in October 1961.

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#89 Birds on barbed wire strung atop the Berlin Wall in January 1962.

Birds on barbed wire strung atop the Berlin Wall in January 1962.

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#90 A divided Berlin is seen through barbed wire and rubble in January 1962.

A divided Berlin is seen through barbed wire and rubble in January 1962.

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#91 A young West German, Monika Heyne, plays with a ball near the Berlin Wall in January 1962.

A young West German, Monika Heyne, plays with a ball near the Berlin Wall in January 1962.

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#92 An East German guard throws a ball back to a child on the West German side of the Berlin Wall in June 1962.

An East German guard throws a ball back to a child on the West German side of the Berlin Wall in June 1962.

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#93 An East German policeman, known as a Volkspolizei or “people’s police” — Vopo for short — walks at Checkpoint Charlie between East and West Berlin in October 1962.

An East German policeman, known as a Volkspolizei or "people's police" — Vopo for short — walks at Checkpoint Charlie between East and West Berlin in October 1962.

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#94 Children chase a ball beside the Berlin Wall in December 1962.

Children chase a ball beside the Berlin Wall in December 1962.

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#95 A girl looks at the Berlin Wall through a frosty window which reflects the Wall’s silhouetted barbed wire in December 1962.

A girl looks at the Berlin Wall through a frosty window which reflects the Wall's silhouetted barbed wire in December 1962.

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#96 The Berlin Wall bears the shadowy silhouettes of West Berliners waving to their relatives on the unseen, Eastern side of the Wall in December 1962.

The Berlin Wall bears the shadowy silhouettes of West Berliners waving to their relatives on the unseen, Eastern side of the Wall in December 1962.

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#97 A divided Berlin, seen through a tangle of barbed wire in December 1962.

A divided Berlin, seen through a tangle of barbed wire in December 1962.

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#98 A boy stands on a coal scuttle to peer over the wall of a sports stadium in Berlin, 8th January 1961.

A boy stands on a coal scuttle to peer over the wall of a sports stadium in Berlin, 8th January 1961.

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#99 Boys bring buckets to stand on for a view over the wall of a sports stadium in Berlin, 8th January 1961.

Boys bring buckets to stand on for a view over the wall of a sports stadium in Berlin, 8th January 1961.

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#100 West Berlin policemen and East German Volkspolizei face each other across the border in Berlin.

West Berlin policemen and East German Volkspolizei face each other across the border in Berlin.

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#101 Two mothers can only wave to their children and grandchildren in the Soviet sector of Berlin from across the Berlin wall, 1961.

Two mothers can only wave to their children and grandchildren in the Soviet sector of Berlin from across the Berlin wall, 1961.

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#102 On a day when the Berlin Wall is open, throngs of West Germans wait for friends and relatives to arrive from the Eastern sector, 1960.

On a day when the Berlin Wall is open, throngs of West Germans wait for friends and relatives to arrive from the Eastern sector, 1960.

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#103 Families and friends, once neighbours, now stand divided and wave across to each other over the Berlin wall, 1960.

Families and friends, once neighbours, now stand divided and wave across to each other over the Berlin wall, 1960.

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#104 Two little girls in a West German street chat with their grandparents in the window of their home in the eastern zone, separated only by a barbed wire barricade, 14th August 1961.

Two little girls in a West German street chat with their grandparents in the window of their home in the eastern zone, separated only by a barbed wire barricade, 14th August 1961.

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#105 A citizen of East Berlin peers through barbed wire at a West Berliner over the Berlin Wall, Berlin, Germany, 1960s.

A citizen of East Berlin peers through barbed wire at a West Berliner over the Berlin Wall, Berlin, Germany, 1960s.

The mass immigration of Germans from Communist Berlin to Western Berlin inspired East Germany military leader Erich Honeker to construct the blockade, a barricade of concrete walls, minefields, and guard posts that stretched for 100 miles.

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#106 A woman is lowered from a window in Bernauer Strasse on a rope to escape into the western sector of Berlin after the post-war division of the city, 10th September 1961.

A woman is lowered from a window in Bernauer Strasse on a rope to escape into the western sector of Berlin after the post-war division of the city, 10th September 1961.

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#107 Posters of Nikita Khrushchev, Walter Ulbricht, Wilhelm Pieck and the East German Premier Otto Grotewohl on an East Berlin Wall, 28th August 1961.

Posters of Nikita Khrushchev, Walter Ulbricht, Wilhelm Pieck and the East German Premier Otto Grotewohl on an East Berlin Wall, 28th August 1961.

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#108 Soldiers outside the entrance to Berlin’s Potsdamer Platz underground station next to a section of the Berlin Wall, circa 1961.

Soldiers outside the entrance to Berlin's Potsdamer Platz underground station next to a section of the Berlin Wall, circa 1961.

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#109 East German troops and police seal off the frontier between East and West Berlin with barbed-wire to control the flow of refugees, 15th August 1961.

East German troops and police seal off the frontier between East and West Berlin with barbed-wire to control the flow of refugees, 15th August 1961.

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#110 East German military personnel supervising construction of the Berlin Wall, August 1961.

East German military personnel supervising construction of the Berlin Wall, August 1961.

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#111 A tear gas grenade explodes next to an East German armoured car during riots on the first anniversary of the building of the Berlin Wall, circa 1960.

A tear gas grenade explodes next to an East German armoured car during riots on the first anniversary of the building of the Berlin Wall, circa 1960.

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#112 Dieter and Monika Marotz of Bernauerstrasse, Berlin, wave to relatives after their wedding, 8th September 1961.

Dieter and Monika Marotz of Bernauerstrasse, Berlin, wave to relatives after their wedding, 8th September 1961.

The newlyweds live in the western sector of Berlin, while their relatives living on the same street are in the Eastern sector and unable to attend the ceremony.

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#113 Relatives of newlyweds Dieter and Monika Marotz of Bernauerstrasse, Berlin, wave to the couple after their wedding, 8th September 1961.

Relatives of newlyweds Dieter and Monika Marotz of Bernauerstrasse, Berlin, wave to the couple after their wedding, 8th September 1961.

Although the Marotz's and their relatives live in the same street, their houses are in the western and eastern sectors, respectively, of the divided city, leaving them unable to be at the ceremony together.

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#114 Members of the Volkspolizei, the East German national police, check an elderly man’s papers at the Berlin Wall, 11th September 1961.

Members of the Volkspolizei, the East German national police, check an elderly man's papers at the Berlin Wall, 11th September 1961.

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#115 East German border guards carry away a refugee who was wounded by East German machine-gun fire as he dashed through Communist border installations toward the Berlin Wall in 1971.

East German border guards carry away a refugee who was wounded by East German machine-gun fire as he dashed through Communist border installations toward the Berlin Wall in 1971.

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Written by Aung Budhh

Husband + Father + librarian + Poet + Traveler + Proud Buddhist. I love you with the breath, the smiles and the tears of all my life.

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