Everything You Never Knew You Wanted to Know About Berlin
That streets may sometimes have many names is no secret to anyone. But some of the choices, although worth knowing about, are better forgotten. Please burn after reading.
First it was known as Bethanienufer and Mariannenufer. From the 24th of March 1849 until the 20th of May 1937 to be exact.
On May 20th, 1933 both sections of the southern bank of Luisenstädtischer Kanal between Engelbecken and Schillingsbrücke were re-named in honour of a young man, a 24-year-old student and fervent follower of SA-philosophy, Eduard Felsen. Felsen died on February 28th the same year – the very day Hindenburg announced the “Decree of the Reich President for the Protection of the People and State” („Verordnung des Reichspräsidenten zum Schutz von Volk und Staat“ or „Reichstagsbrandverordnung”) and when the Reichstag burnt (hence the second name for Hindenburg´s new law).
His death was considered self-sacrificing and he himself a Martyr to the Cause: he was killed in one of numerous street clashes between the SA zealots and the equally militant followers of left-wing ideology. At the time of his “heroic” burial, that game was almost over…
The name Felsendamm disappeared for ever, together with Hoffmanndamm (Erkelenzdamm today) and Thielschufer (Fraenkelufer), on the 31st of July 1947.