Day 18-Oct 10-Mon-Cologne, Germany
We have traveled through the night and arrive at Cologne by breakfast time. As we sailed from Klobenz to Cologne, we were reminded that not all of Germany is old and picturesque. We passed this highly industrial area before nightfall.
(Be sure to click on the picture for a larger version, sometimes with commentary.)
Norm captured this shot of the beautiful Dom Cathedral and the impressive rail and pedestrian bridge in a panorama. He had to walk across the bridge as our ship is docked under the far side of it.
On our morning guided walk, our guide tells how Cologne got its name. Agrippa was the military leader of the fortress in this area. He had a beautiful daughter named Agrippina. When Claudius, the Emperor, saw Agrippina, he divorced his fourth wife and made Agrippina his fifth wife. He made the fortress a colony and named it Cologna (colony) in her honor. This label raised its status, and so it grew and prospered.
The Dom Cathedral is pictured again as we approach it a bit closer. The Dom Cathedral was only bombed once in WWII due to orders to avoid it as it served as landmark for the planes to know where to bomb. The steeples stuck up over the morning fog. Cologne was heavily bombed, but not the cathedral – once a steeple was struck by accident, but no major damage occurred.
Cologne served as a triage camp during WWII which means that prisoners were sent here first to then be reassigned according to whatever status was given them. It is called the Deutz Concentration Camp. Prisoners were sent here because of many persecutions – being Jewish, being gay, being disabled etc. This pink triangle memorializes those imprisoned because of sexual differences. Conrad Adenauer said, “Deutz is where Siberia begins.” Now the site is used for trade fairs and the like.
These houses on Fisherman Row were painted different colors in the Middle Ages because houses were not numbered at that time. You could direct someone to your home based on the color.
The iron figures on the front actually are large staples fastened into the end of the beam that runs from front to back of the house. The beam holds them straight. Again, they build taller because they are taxed on the footprint of the building. They seldom used blue because lapis lazuli is the only source, and it oxidizes too quickly. Sometime blue bottles were crushed up to add color, but it was also very expensive. They also used ox blood to mix in the paint to make pink.