What do large cities do when they run out of space to bury their dead? They go beyond their limits. Traditionally all large European cities like Paris, Vienna or London eventually established new burial sites further and further from their centre. Vienna even considered using the pneumatic tube system to transport their deceased to the Zentralfriedhof (Central Cemetery).

By the end of the nineteenth century Berlin faced a similar problem and dealt with it the same way: by opening new cemeteries on its outskirts. In two cases it went even further: it set up new burial grounds in Brandenburg. Here’s a short story of one of them and the railway line (not a pneumatic one) built to serve its guests – a line which opened for regular service on June 3, 1913.

To visit Stahnsdorf Cemetery with a guide, please visit the cemetery’s web page at
Veranstaltungen – Südwestkirchhof Stahnsdorf (suedwestkirchhof.de)

To find out more about the famous Berliners buried in Stahnsdorf visit:
Wikipedia page of the cemetery

To see maps of the railway line known as “Leichenbahn” visit (highly recommended) page of

To watch a short film presenting the state of the line’s remains today go to
The Vanished Railway Line to Stahnsdorf by AirBerl

Main theme: “Assembly Line Frustration” © Ionics Music | TerraSound.de

Via Freesound:
Bells and religious hymn on the top of “Dell’Avocata” mountain by Felix Blume
“Magnificat” by Tarikki
“Spooky Dark Pad” by John Wally
“Secundo tempore2” by John Wally
“Train Stopping” by Vlatko Blazek
“Gates of Heaven” by Theo Ther
“Wales Steam-train” by Jrosin

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