Halle (Saale)

Halle (Saale), or simply Halle (German: [ˈhalə]; from the 15th to the 17th century: Hall in Sachsen; until the beginning of the 20th century: Halle an der Saale [ˈhalə ʔan deːɐ̯ ˈzaːlə] ; from 1965 to 1995: Halle/Saale) is the largest city of the German state of Saxony-Anhalt, the fifth most populous city in the area of former East Germany after (East) Berlin, Leipzig, Dresden and Chemnitz as well as the 31st largest city of Germany, and with around 244,000 inhabitants, it is slightly more populous than the state capital of Magdeburg. Together with Leipzig, the largest city of Saxony, Halle forms the polycentric Leipzig-Halle conurbation. Between the two cities, in Schkeuditz, lies Leipzig/Halle International Airport. The Leipzig-Halle conurbation is at the heart of the larger Central G...Read more

Halle (Saale), or simply Halle (German: [ˈhalə]; from the 15th to the 17th century: Hall in Sachsen; until the beginning of the 20th century: Halle an der Saale [ˈhalə ʔan deːɐ̯ ˈzaːlə] ; from 1965 to 1995: Halle/Saale) is the largest city of the German state of Saxony-Anhalt, the fifth most populous city in the area of former East Germany after (East) Berlin, Leipzig, Dresden and Chemnitz as well as the 31st largest city of Germany, and with around 244,000 inhabitants, it is slightly more populous than the state capital of Magdeburg. Together with Leipzig, the largest city of Saxony, Halle forms the polycentric Leipzig-Halle conurbation. Between the two cities, in Schkeuditz, lies Leipzig/Halle International Airport. The Leipzig-Halle conurbation is at the heart of the larger Central German Metropolitan Region.

Halle lies in the south of Saxony-Anhalt, in the Leipzig Bay, the southernmost part of the North German Plain, on the River Saale (a tributary of the Elbe), which is the third longest river flowing entirely in Germany after the Weser and the Main. The White Elster flows into the Saale in the southern borough of Silberhöhe. Halle is the fourth largest city in the Thuringian-Upper Saxon dialect area after Leipzig, Dresden and Chemnitz.

Halle is an economic and educational center in central Germany. The Martin Luther University of Halle-Wittenberg, with campuses in Halle and Wittenberg, is the largest university in Saxony-Anhalt, one of the oldest universities in Germany, and a nurturing ground for the local startup ecosystem. The German National Academy of Sciences, commonly known as Leopoldina, has its seat in Halle. The university hospital of Halle (Universitätsklinikum Halle (Saale)) is the largest hospital in the state.

 Halle about 1900Name

Halle's early history is connected with the harvesting of salt. The name of the river Saale contains the Germanic root for salt, and salt-harvesting has taken place in Halle since at least the Bronze Age (2300–600 BC).

From 1965 to 1995, the official name was Halle/Saale.

Middle Ages until industrialisation

The earliest documented mention of Halle dates from AD 806. It became a part of the Archbishopric of Magdeburg in the 10th century and remained so until 1680, when the Margraviate of Brandenburg annexed it together with Magdeburg as the Duchy of Magdeburg, while it was an important location for Martin Luther's Reformation in the 16th century. Cardinal Albert of Mainz (Archbishop of Magdeburg from 1513 to 1545) also impacted on the town in this period. According to historic documents, the city of Halle became a member of the Hanseatic League at least as early as 1281.

Halle became a center for Pietism, a movement encouraged by King Frederick William I of Prussia (reigned 1713–1740) because it caused the area's large Lutheran population to be more inclined to Fredrick William I's religion (Calvinism), as well as more loyal to the Prussian king instead of to the decentralized feudal system. By the 1740s Halle had established many orphanages as well as schools for the wealthy in the sober style Pietism encouraged. This Halle education was the first time the "modern education" system was established.[citation needed] The Halle Pietists also combatted poverty.[1]

During the War of the Fourth Coalition, French and Prussian forces clashed in the Battle of Halle on 17 October 1806. The fighting moved from the covered bridges on the city's west side, through the streets and market place, to the eastern suburbs.

In 1815 Halle became part of the Prussian Province of Saxony.

World War II (1939–1945)  Halle survived the Second World War almost unscathed and still has an intact cityscape today.

During World War II, KZ-Außenlager Birkhahn, a subcamp of Buchenwald was in Halle, where prisoners from Poland, Czechoslovakia, the Soviet Union, France, Netherlands and other nations[2] were forced to work in the Siebel aircraft plants, making combat aircraft. The plant was later dismantled. In Ammendorf, a large factory owned by Orgacid [de] produced mustard gas.

Near the end of World War II, there were two bombing raids carried out against the town: the first on 31 March 1945, the second a few days later. The first attack took place between the railway station and the city's centre, and the second bombing was in the southern district. It killed over 1,000 inhabitants and destroyed 3,600 buildings. Among them, are the Market Church, St. George Church, the Old Town Hall, the municipal theatre, historic buildings on Bruederstrasse and on Grosse Steinstrasse, and the city cemetery.

On 17 April 1945, American soldiers occupied Halle, and the Red Tower was set on fire by artillery and destroyed. The Market Church and the Church of St. George received more hits. However, the city was spared further damage because an aerial bombardment was canceled, after former naval officer Felix von Luckner negotiated the city's surrender to the American army. In July, the Americans withdrew and the city was occupied by the Red Army.

German Democratic Republic (1949–1990)

After World War II, Halle served as the capital of the short-lived administrative region of Saxony-Anhalt until 1952, when the East German government abolished its "Länder" (states). As a part of East Germany (until 1990), it functioned as the capital of the administrative district (Bezirk) of Halle.

Since German unity (after 1990)

When Saxony-Anhalt was re-established as a Bundesland in 1990, Magdeburg, not Halle, became the capital.[3]

On 9 October 2019, two people were killed in a shooting incident at a synagogue in Halle. The Federal Prosecutor (Generalbundesanwalt) classified the attack as an act of right-wing terrorism stemming from antisemitism; as a consequence security measures at Jewish facilities were increased.

^ Clark, Christopher (2007). Iron Kingdom: The Rise and Downfall of Prussia, 1600–1947. Penguin UK. ISBN 9780141904023. Archived from the original on 13 April 2017. Retrieved 18 May 2017. In Halle, too, the local Pietists battled poverty and indigence. Around the charismatic figure of August Hermann Francke there was an extraordinary flowering of Christian voluntarism. In 1695, Francke opened a poor-school financed by pious donations. ^ Das vergessene Lager: Eine Dokumentation zum Außenkommando des KZ Buchenwald in Halle/Saale 1944/45 ^ Berentsen, William H. "Saxony-Anhalt (State, Germany)". Encyclopedia Britannica.
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