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Stunning Vintage Photos Show What Zürich Looked Like in the 1950s

After World War II, the textile and several other industries of Zürich were declined. At that time the services sector, insurance companies, and notably banks gained importance and they contributed a lot to the economy. During World War II, Zürich banks took advantage of banking secrecy laws to help the Nazi Party launder gold and stolen valuables. A large number of immigrants from rural Switzerland and abroad moved to Zürich and the population of the city surpassed one million at the end of the 1950s.

Here below are some stunning vintage photos that show what Zurich looked like in the 1950s.

#1 The fashion house Robert Ober in Zürich at the Gessnerallee and Sihlbrücke, 1953

The fashion house Robert Ober in Zürich at the Gessnerallee and Sihlbrücke, 1953

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#2 Bellevue, Zurich 1950

Bellevue, Zurich 1950

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#3 Onlookers watching dead whale, Zurich 1952.

Onlookers watching dead whale, Zurich 1952.

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#4 Yoga school in Zurich, 1953.

Yoga school in Zurich, 1953.

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#5 Jelmoli department store, Zürich, 1952

Jelmoli department store, Zürich, 1952

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#6 The fashion house Robert Ober in Zürich at the Gessnerallee and Sihlbrücke, 1953

The fashion house Robert Ober in Zürich at the Gessnerallee and Sihlbrücke, 1953

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#7 Bahnhofstrasse corner Uraniastrasse, today Modissa House, Zürich, 1956

Bahnhofstrasse corner Uraniastrasse, today Modissa House, Zürich, 1956

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#8 The Paradeplatz, Zürich, circa 1950

The Paradeplatz, Zürich, circa 1950

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#9 Pacifist Max Daetwyler near the Zurich ‘Volkshaus’, 1950.

Pacifist Max Daetwyler near the Zurich 'Volkshaus', 1950.

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#10 Renovation at Central, Zurich, 1951.

Renovation at Central, Zurich, 1951.

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#11 Zurich Bahnhofplatz, 1950.

Zurich Bahnhofplatz, 1950.

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#12 Bellevue Zurich 1950

Bellevue Zurich 1950

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#13 Central, Zürich, 1950.

Central, Zürich, 1950.

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#14 Women feeding gulls at the Zurichsee, Zürich, 1952.

Women feeding gulls at the Zurichsee, Zürich, 1952.

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#15 Zürich Main Station, 1952.

Zürich Main Station, 1952.

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#16 Underpass Giesshübel Zurich under construction 1954.

Underpass Giesshübel Zurich under construction 1954.

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#17 The new main entrance (without doors, with ‘air curtain’) from the department store Oscar Weber in Zürich on the Bahnhofstrasse, 1952

The new main entrance (without doors, with 'air curtain') from the department store Oscar Weber in Zürich on the Bahnhofstrasse, 1952

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#18 Grieder on the Bahnhofstrasse, Zürich, 1952

Grieder on the Bahnhofstrasse, Zürich, 1952

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#19 The fashion house Robert Ober in Zürich at the Gessnerallee and Sihlbrücke, 1953

The fashion house Robert Ober in Zürich at the Gessnerallee and Sihlbrücke, 1953

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#20 Fein Kaller store in Zürich, 1954

Fein Kaller store in Zürich, 1954

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#21 Bahnhofstrasse corner Uraniastrasse, today Modissa House, Zürich, 1956

Bahnhofstrasse corner Uraniastrasse, today Modissa House, Zürich, 1956

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#22 Demolition of the bank association at the Paradeplatz, Zürich, 1956

Demolition of the bank association at the Paradeplatz, Zürich, 1956

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#23 Bahnhofstrasse Christmas lighting in Zürich, 1957

Bahnhofstrasse Christmas lighting in Zürich, 1957

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#24 Oscar Weber department store at the Bahnhofstrasse 75, Zürich, 1958, formerly Julius Brann, today Manor

Oscar Weber department store at the Bahnhofstrasse 75, Zürich, 1958, formerly Julius Brann, today Manor

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#25 Oscar Weber department store showcase in Zürich, 1958

Oscar Weber department store showcase in Zürich, 1958

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#26 Sihlporte, Zürich, 1959

Sihlporte, Zürich, 1959

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#27 The modern Jelmoli department store in Zürich, 1959

The modern Jelmoli department store in Zürich, 1959

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#28 Bahnhofstrasse, Zürich, circa 1950

Bahnhofstrasse, Zürich, circa 1950

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#29 Oscar Weber department store, Bahnhofstrasse, Zürich, circa 1950

Oscar Weber department store, Bahnhofstrasse, Zürich, circa 1950

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#30 Oscar Weber department store, Bahnhofstrasse, Zürich, circa 1950

Oscar Weber department store, Bahnhofstrasse, Zürich, circa 1950

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#31 The Paradeplatz, Zürich, circa 1950

The Paradeplatz, Zürich, circa 1950

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#32 Zürich station square, Bahnhofstrasse, circa 1950

Zürich station square, Bahnhofstrasse, circa 1950

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#33 Zurich station square, circa 1950

Zurich station square, circa 1950

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#34 Ballet “Porgy and Bess” at Opernhaus Zurich, 1950.

Ballet "Porgy and Bess" at Opernhaus Zurich, 1950.

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#35 Pacifist Max Daetwyler near the Zurich ‘Volkshaus”, 1950.

Pacifist Max Daetwyler near the Zurich 'Volkshaus", 1950.

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#36 Zurich Enge Church, 1950.

Zurich Enge Church, 1950.

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#37 Sports airplane crash into the river Sihl, Allmend Zurich 1950.

Sports airplane crash into the river Sihl, Allmend Zurich 1950.

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#38 Tramway Accident in Zurich 1950

Tramway Accident in Zurich 1950

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#39 Cars waiting, halt sign, Zurich 1950

Cars waiting, halt sign, Zurich 1950

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#40 Private school Minerva, Zürich 1950.

Private school Minerva, Zürich 1950.

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#41 Women walking on a street in Zurich, 1950.

Women walking on a street in Zurich, 1950.

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#42 Youth at May Day rallies in Zurich 1950.

Youth at May Day rallies in Zurich 1950.

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#43 Judas tree at Hirschengraben, Zurich. 1950

Judas tree at Hirschengraben, Zurich. 1950

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#44 Matthew Church on Wehntalerstrasse Zurich, 1951.

Matthew Church on Wehntalerstrasse Zurich, 1951.

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#45 Reception of the swiss cyclists from the Giro d’Italia, Zurich 1950

Reception of the swiss cyclists from the Giro d'Italia, Zurich 1950

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#46 Coca-Cola filling plant in Zurich, 1951.

Coca-Cola filling plant in Zurich, 1951.

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#47 Welti-Furrer Taxi Zurich, 1950.

Welti-Furrer Taxi Zurich, 1950.

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#48 Railway theatre in Zurich, 1950.

Railway theatre in Zurich, 1950.

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#49 Bellevue Zurich, 1950

Bellevue Zurich, 1950

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#50 Kongresshaus Zürich, 1950.

Kongresshaus Zürich, 1950.

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#51 Hirschengraben, Zurich, 1950

Hirschengraben, Zurich, 1950

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#52 Salvation army singing in christmas time Zurich, 1950.

Salvation army singing in christmas time Zurich, 1950.

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#53 Bahnhofquai, Zürich 1951

Bahnhofquai, Zürich 1951

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#54 Parking place at the Walche, Waisenhausplatz, Bahnhofquai, Zürich 1952

Parking place at the Walche, Waisenhausplatz, Bahnhofquai, Zürich 1952

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#55 Funicular Rigiviertel, Zurich, 1951.

Funicular Rigiviertel, Zurich, 1951.

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#56 Merry-go-round at jubilee of nurse school, Zurich 1951.

Merry-go-round at jubilee of nurse school, Zurich 1951.

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#57 Culmannstrasse, Zurich, 1951.

Culmannstrasse, Zurich, 1951.

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#58 Schipfe in Zürich, 1951

Schipfe in Zürich, 1951

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#59 Grand Prix Switzerland, Zurich 1951.

Grand Prix Switzerland, Zurich 1951.

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#60 Installing an exhibition in Helmhaus, Zurich, 1951.

Installing an exhibition in Helmhaus, Zurich, 1951.

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#61 Hauptbahnhof covered in snow, 1952.

Hauptbahnhof covered in snow, 1952.

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#62 Tramway Accident in Zurich, 1952.

Tramway Accident in Zurich, 1952.

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#63 Zurich Stock Exchange, 1952.

Zurich Stock Exchange, 1952.

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#64 Shawm orchestra at May Day demonstration in Zurich, 1952.

Shawm orchestra at May Day demonstration in Zurich, 1952.

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#65 Souvenir shop at the Limmatquai in Zürich, 1952.

Souvenir shop at the Limmatquai in Zürich, 1952.

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#66 At the Bahnhofstrasse in Zürich, 1952.

At the Bahnhofstrasse in Zürich, 1952.

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#67 Cantonal Eye Clinic, Zurich, 1952.

Cantonal Eye Clinic, Zurich, 1952.

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#68 Road Safety Education in Zurich, 1953.

Road Safety Education in Zurich, 1953.

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#69 New Swiss technical college for women, Zurich 1953

New Swiss technical college for women, Zurich 1953

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#70 Escher Wyss factory, Zurich 1953.

Escher Wyss factory, Zurich 1953.

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#71 Wine Fair in Zurich, 1953

Wine Fair in Zurich, 1953

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#72 Restaurant on Schützengasse in Zurich, 1955.

Restaurant on Schützengasse in Zurich, 1955.

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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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