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Schwerin is the state capital of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania. The independent medium-sized town is the smallest of all state capitals in Germany. Schwerin is the second largest city after Rostock and one of the four regional centers in the state.

Schwerin was first mentioned as Wendenburg in 1018 and received German city rights from Heinrich the Lion in 1164. This makes it the oldest town in what is now Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania. In the course of time, the city expanded on the west and south banks of the Schwerin Inner Lake, and there are a total of twelve lakes within the city area. The starting point for urban development was the place with today's landmark of the city, the Schwerin Castle; it is located on an island between Schweriner See and Burgsee with the castle church from 1560. Until 1918 the castle was a main residence of the Mecklenburg dukes and grand dukes and the power center of the Duchy of Mecklenburg-Schwerin, which in 1919 became a democratic free state. The castle has been the seat of the state parliament since 1990. With its surrounding gardens, it was the main venue for the Federal Horticultural Show 2009 and, as a historically unique ensemble with the other residential buildings, is a candidate for UNESCO World Heritage. In addition, Schwerin is characterized by its old town - unusually well preserved for a German city of this size - the adjacent shelf city, the spa district of Zippendorf and other historic districts with many architectural monuments.

Economically, technology companies, authorities, Deutsche Bahn, mechanical engineering and material processing, consumer production, healthcare and clinics, service companies, and increasingly tourism and the cultural and creative industries dominate. In addition, Schwerin is a university location with around 600 students, including the private medium-sized technical college, the college of the Federal Employment Agency and the Vitruvius Design College. In terms of sport, Schwerin has been known as a boxing town since Fritz Sdunek and as a volleyball town thanks to the twelve-time German champions Schweriner SC.



Schwerin Castle




The city was first mentioned as Zuarina by Thietmar von Merseburg around 1012/18. Helmold von Bosau called it in 1160 Zuerin, Zwerin. The Pöhlder annals name the place 1160 Zuarin (-ensis) and the Steterburger 1174 Zvarin. The place was called Swerin since the 15th century (still common in the Mecklenburg dialect), and since the 16th century it has been called Suerin or officially Schwerin.

Indirect first mention could have been earlier: In a travel report of the chronicler Ibn Jacub / Ibrahim Ibn Yaqub, envoy of the Caliph of Cordoba (Spain), a Slavic castle was mentioned around 973, which could be identical with Schwerin.

The name is said to be related to the Polish zvěŕ for wild animal or zvěŕin for game enclosure, zoo or horse stud. Speculations about the origin of the place name from the Slavic god Svarog (Swarzyn, place of Svarog) cannot be proven.

Deviating from this, it was derived from the old Germanic swaran (defend, stem related to swear), which could only have been reinterpreted later by immigrating Slavs in the sense of zvěŕ.

The Latin name Suerina or Suerinum was and is used for Schwerin.

The main statute of the city of Schwerin determines the designation “state capital” as an addition to the city name.

Settlement, city foundation and county
The present urban area was settled early on. During excavations on the Marienplatz in Schwerin, tools were found dating back to around 1000 to 600 BC. Were dated. A subsequent Germanic settlement is documented by the discovery of a well from the 1st century AD.

After 700 AD, Slavs settled in what is now Schwerin. The Jewish-born Spanish-Moorish traveling salesman Ibrāhīm ibn Yaʿqūb reported in 965 about a castle in a freshwater lake, which historians suspect on the site of today's Schwerin. Excavation finds on the castle island at least confirm the existence of a Slavic rampart during this period. It could be dendrochronologically dated to 941/942. In 1018 the Christian Abodrite prince Mistislaw saved himself from an attack by the Lutizen in Schwerin Castle, which he then had to give up.

In 1160 the Abodrite prince Niklot burned down the castle on the castle island in order not to let it fall into the hands of an advancing Saxon army under the leadership of Henry the Lion. After the victory over Niklot, the Duke of Saxony had the castle rebuilt as a Saxon outpost in the Abodrite land. 1160 is therefore traditionally seen as the "German" year Schwerin was founded, although the city charter was probably only granted in 1164. After Niklot's death, Heinrich the Lion made Gunzelin I governor of the land of the Abodrites, and thus also of Schwerin. Heinrich later divided the land, gave part back to Pribislaw, Niklots' son, and founded the other part into the county of Schwerin with Gunzelin as the first count of Schwerin. In 1167 Schwerin became the seat of the County of Schwerin. In 1167 the Cistercian monk Berno moved his bishopric to Schwerin. After the consecration of the first cathedral donated by Heinrich around 1171, Schwerin developed into the starting point for the Christianization of what would later become Mecklenburg. The city had about 500 inhabitants at the time, one fifth of whom were clergy.

A city council, consisting of six councilors and the mayor, was first mentioned in 1228. The power disputes between the count and the bishop hampered the development of the city. Until 1284, the bishop's successors were able to take possession of the entire shelf (today: Shelfstadt), but this was not included in the city fortifications, so that the cathedral chapter could not increase its property. In 1270 the construction of a second cathedral began. The money for this came from the income of pilgrims who visited a sacred drop of blood enclosed in jasper, which Count Heinrich von Schwerin had brought back from a pilgrimage in 1222 and donated to the canons. At the instigation of the Count's widow, Countess Audacia, a third of the income from this relic was used to finance the new building of a Franciscan convent, which was mentioned in a document as early as 1236; This makes it the oldest settlement of a begging order in Mecklenburg (repealed in 1552). The replacement of the wooden city fortifications with a massive city wall was completed in 1340. The town hall was first mentioned in 1351, burned down three times and rebuilt again and again in the same place. The medieval archway of the town hall passage has been preserved. The city wall passed its first practical test when Duke Albrecht II, a descendant of Niklot, besieged the city for months in 1358.


Mills in Schwerin
The first bishop's mill was mentioned in 1178. They were among the oldest mills in Mecklenburg. But after that there were various other mills on the Aubach that also bore this name.
In 1284, the Spieltordamm was built, which dammed the Aubach in the Mühlenteich, today's Pfaffenteich, and was the prerequisite for the operation of a water-powered Count's inland mill in Schwerin.
Numerous mills have been documented for Schwerin since the 12th century. The mill in Mühlenstraße from 1711 was relocated to the Schwerin outskirts of Wismarer Chaussee in 1749 due to the unfavorable wind conditions and demolished in 1893. Until 1866, the so-called Mühlenzwang (also called Mahlzwang) also applied in Schwerin. This means that the grain producers were not allowed to have their grain ground where they wanted, but had to have it processed into flour in their respective grinding district. When the old compulsory meal rights ceased to exist in 1867 with the adoption of the trade regulations of the North German Confederation of 1868/69 and the millers lost their compulsory meal monopoly in their district, the number of mills in the city grew by leaps and bounds in the second half of the 19th century and because the introduction of the freedom of trade also favored this process, the great age of windmill construction began in Schwerin. Between 1890 and 1895 there was a water mill, five wind and three steam mills in Schwerin. Then the decline began; some mills had to be demolished due to dilapidation, others burned down. Towards the end of the First World War, only the Bischofsmühle still existed as a water mill.

In the Duchy of Mecklenburg until the 18th century
After the Gunzelin family died out, the county of Schwerin passed to the Duchy of Mecklenburg in 1358. Albrecht II acquired the city for 20,000 silver marks (which he did not pay in full) and made it his residence and thus the cultural and political center of Mecklenburg. Schwerin also became a state town in Mecklenburg and was represented on state parliaments as part of the towns of the Mecklenburg District until 1918.

From an economic point of view, the cities of Rostock and Wismar, which are more conveniently located in terms of transport, developed better. Under Duke Heinrich IV, border disputes, robbery and murder were the order of the day, and the coffers were empty. The plague was also rampant.

It was not until Magnus II. From 1478 that the tide was turned by reorganizing the administration, particularly the financial administration. He had plans to connect the Elbe, Elde, Schweriner See and Wismar by canals. Under him the oldest surviving building in the city was erected, the Great New House. A princely school was opened in 1553 opposite the castle, to which the Fridericianum Schwerin is attributed. In 1561, a government library was established under Tilemann Stella. The fires of 1531 and 1558 destroyed large parts of the city. Due to an order from the building authorities, stone houses had to be built to reduce the risk of fire. But another fire in 1651 again reduced large parts of Schwerin to rubble and ashes. The reconstruction of the town hall was completed in 1654. In the Thirty Years' War the city suffered relatively fewer losses than the duchy.

Witch hunt
Between 1560 and 1700, around 4,000 people were charged with witchcraft in Protestant Mecklenburg, a core zone of witch hunts, of which around half were executed. In Schwerin too, witch trials took place again and again during this time, whereby the intensity of the persecution increased significantly again after the Thirty Years' War. The interrogations took place in the town hall on the market, in the castle and in the executioner's house in Burgstrasse. From 1564 to 1770 there are reports of 103 witch trials, 45 of which were probably executed. One woman died under torture. Seven expulsions from the country were possibly issued and two defendants managed to escape.

Between 1665 and 1669 alone, 19 alleged witches were arrested in the city. Almost all of them were executed and burned after brief but extremely brutal interrogations and forced confessions. Since the tormented women gave the court the names of other witches, chain trials developed. In 1604 several women from Schwerin were accused of being witches and accused of having caused the death of the young Duke Johann VII through witchcraft in 1592, including Catharina Wankelmod (Katharina Wankelmut), who was later burned at the stake, and Margarethe Schultze, who after a The five-year trial was acquitted in 1609. Children were also among the victims in Schwerin. In 1642, eight-year-old Hans Donken (Hans Douke) was flogged for sorcery. Asmut Veith was even beheaded at the age of fourteen.


A relief plaque by the sculptor Anni Jung on the ceramic column set up on the Great Moor has been a reminder of this dark side of the city's history since 1986. On April 18, 2016, the city council decided to rehabilitate the victims of witch persecution in Schwerin and to install a memorial plaque near the town hall.

18th century
According to a ducal order of 1705, today's Schelfstadt was expanded. In 1717 the few Jews who were allowed to reside again after 1679 set up a cemetery there. In 1740 the town hall of Schwerin Neustadt was initially built as a residential building and in 1776 it was converted into the administrative center. The attempt to establish commercial and commercial enterprises and to revitalize the city failed because of the backward economy due to the predominance of the nobility and knighthood.

In 1752 200 lanterns were already lighting the streets of Schwerin. The development of the suburb continued. Duke Friedrich moved the residence from Schwerin to Ludwigslust from 1756 to 1765, which remained there until 1837. In 1759 Prussian troops occupied the country and also besieged Schwerin. In 1764 there were 3,288 inhabitants in the old and suburbs of Schwerin. In 1773 the synagogue was inaugurated, in the vicinity of which houses for the regional rabbi and the cantor were built.

Between 1783 and 1785, the new building was built as a market hall on the market according to plans by Johann Joachim Busch. It replaced open market stalls with poor hygienic conditions in the open space between four old, irregular properties. During his visits to Schwerin, Duke Friedrich found the stench of the market and the screeching of the market women repugnant.

19th century to the Weimar Republic
From September 1813 the Dreesch was used by the Russian-German Legion as a training ground for the liberation struggle against Napoleon.

The cityscape was changed in the 19th century by extensive construction work. Schwerin lost its medieval character and expanded further. City fortifications that were no longer needed disappeared, stone and half-timbered buildings gradually replaced wooden huts. Building on the Great Moor turned out to be a difficult undertaking in the swampy subsoil. At Marienplatz and in Rostocker Straße (today: Goethestraße) new buildings were built, from 1824 to 1834 Friedrich Franz I built a new seat of government in Schloßstraße (Schwerin) and other buildings. By 1836 the town hall was transformed into a representative building by the court building officer Georg Adolf Demmler, the theater at the Alter Garten and the Marstall on the Marstall peninsula were built. In the north of Schwerin, Northern Germany's first scientifically managed insane sanctuary and care institution was established on Sachsenberg.

After the ducal residence was relocated from Ludwigslust to Schwerin under Grand Duke Paul Friedrich in 1837, it was decided to completely rebuild the Schwerin Palace due to the poor structural condition. Demmler's designs, in which he was based on French Renaissance castles, met with approval from the sovereign, who died in 1842, whereupon the new Grand Duke Friedrich Franz II stopped the new building. The old palace was completely renovated from 1845 to 1857 and partially rebuilt, from 1851 under the direction of the Berlin architect Friedrich August Stüler and with the participation of Hermann Willebrand after Demmler came into conflict with the court officials.

The arsenal at Pfaffenteich was built between 1840 and 1844 according to a design by Demmler under the supervision of Hermann Willebrand and Gottlieb Ruge on the southwest bank of the Schwerin Pfaffenteich. It was first used as an armory and after the First World War as a police barracks. In 1842 the Paulsdamm was built through Lake Schwerin. The Jewish community grew to 300 members who renovated the synagogue from scratch in 1825 and expanded it several times.

In 1847 the city was connected by a rail link to Hagenow on the Berlin – Hamburg line that ran far south of the city. In 1852 the first steamship sailed from Zippendorf to the Rabbit Werder island.


In April 1882, the theater originally built by Demmler burned down during a performance. The new house was designed by court architect Georg Daniel and completed between 1883 and 1886. On the day of the opening on October 3, 1886, the new building was one of the most progressive theater buildings in the world at the time. Between 1889 and 1890, the station building was built in the Wilhelminian style in place of several previous buildings, which has remained largely unchanged except for renovations in the 1920s . In 1904 the power station was built on the north bank of the Pfaffenteich. An electric tram started running in 1908.

The first German sightseeing flight in 1911, during which the royal seat was a stage, gave the impetus to build the Schwerin-Görries airfield. In November 1912 the "Mecklenburgische Flugplatz-Gesellschaft Görries-Schwerin mbH" was founded. By Easter 1913, the airfield company had the selected tournament field in Görries leveled and fenced and the Berlin architect Richard Thiede built a grandstand, a restaurant and an aircraft hangar. The aircraft manufacturer Anton Herman Gerard Fokker relocated his company Fokker Aeroplanbau from Berlin-Johannisthal to Schwerin in 1913 and built his workshops, among other things. in Bornhövedstrasse. The Fokker Dr.I was also built there. As a result of the Versailles Treaty, aircraft production had to be stopped in 1919.

Also in 1913, a fire destroyed the Golden Hall of Schwerin Palace.

As a result of the First World War, there were social and political tensions. Hunger and hardship drove young people and women to break into slaughterhouses and bakeries to get food. In 1918 many workers went on strike. In 1918 Grand Duke Friedrich Franz IV abdicated and the social democracy was able to establish itself more strongly in the capital of the new Free State of Mecklenburg-Schwerin.

As a result of the provisions of the Versailles Treaty, the aircraft manufacturer Fokker left its headquarters in Schwerin in 1919.

From 1919 to 1933, the State Theater served as the first democratic parliament and state parliament of the Free State of Mecklenburg-Schwerin. In 1920 15 workers were killed near the arsenal in bloody clashes with Kapp putschists.

Period of National Socialism 1933–1945
In 1932 the NSDAP achieved a narrow absolute majority in the state elections in Mecklenburg-Schwerin and from then on provided the state government. In 1933 SPD and KPD functionaries were persecuted and arrested, and the mayor and the heads of public institutions were dismissed. Friedrich Hildebrandt was appointed Reich Governor of Mecklenburg. In the same year there were book burnings in the city. In 1934 Schwerin became the capital of Gaus Mecklenburg, which had emerged from the merger of the Free States of Mecklenburg-Schwerin and Mecklenburg-Strelitz. In 1934 the youth were consecrated in the arsenal, 6000 young people marched on the market and on the first State Youth Day there was a demonstration of 1600 members of the youth. In 1935 a Gauführerschule was built in today's Schloßgartenallee, in the north of the city area a new festival hall was completed in 1934, which could hold several thousand people (used by various companies after 1945 and until today by a mechanical engineering company). In 1935 Schwerin became the seat of the newly created district of Schwerin. A huge grove of honor was built to honor the heroes of the National Socialist Wilhelm Gustloff, who was born in Schwerin and shot in Switzerland in 1936. The rulers carried out further new construction and renovation measures in the city with the aim of adapting the cityscape to the ideals of a district capital at the time and turning Schwerin into a logistical and transport center. The city was to be defined by monumental buildings, a popular festival site for around 20,000 people was to be built on Lambrechtsgrund, barracks, apartments, infrastructure and the Schwerin-Görries airfield were to be expanded. Plans envisaged a 30-meter-wide aisle in the area of ​​today's Wismarschen Strasse to the city center for marches and parades. However, many of the plans were abandoned at the start of the war due to a lack of funds. However, the number of new apartments built was above the average of previous years. In Lankow and Neumühle, the construction of homes typical of that time began.


The Jewish community in Schwerin still had 49 members in April 1938. During the Reichspogromnacht from November 9th to 10th, 1938, Jewish shops and the synagogue on the Schlachtermarkt were destroyed by the National Socialists. The reactions of the people of Schwerin to the National Socialist ideology and dictatorship ranged from enthusiasm to tacit reluctance. As everywhere, there was hardly any open resistance. In July and November 1942, and most recently in November 1944, Jews were deported from Schwerin.

In the former sanatorium and nursing home (today's Carl-Friedrich-Flemming-Klinik) in Schwerin, over 1000 children and adult patients were victims of "euthanasia".

At the beginning of the Second World War, in October 1939, the main camp II E was established, from which prisoners of war from several countries were used in the armaments industry and in agriculture and forestry. The prisoners were housed in several barracks, the largest in Stern Buchholz. The Soviet prisoners in particular suffered from malnutrition and were used for dangerous work on the Görries airfield and on the Wehrmacht area in Stern Buchholz. You had to z. Some work under inhuman conditions, which resulted in numerous deaths.

During the war Schwerin experienced four bomb attacks; the first British aircraft destroyed houses in and around Severinstrasse on the night of July 20-21, 1940, killing six people. The target of an American bomber association was the airfield in Görries on August 4th and 25th, causing damage to 81 houses in the neighboring village center. The last and heaviest attack by several squadrons of American bombers on April 7, 1945 particularly hit Wilhelminian-style apartment buildings in Feldstadt. 217 people died, according to another source more than 250 people; 40 houses and the slaughterhouse were completely destroyed and 29 partially destroyed. A school and the cemetery were also hit. Among other things, the local transport depot in Wallstrasse and the cars parked there were hit, which led to the temporary suspension of passenger transport. In contrast to other larger cities in Northern Germany, Schwerin emerged from the war relatively lightly, also because there was hardly any war-related industry located there. Overall, Schwerin was destroyed to 3%.

A death march by inmates of the Sachsenhausen concentration camp ended near Schwerin, around 18,000 prisoners survived. American troops occupied the city on May 2, 1945 without a fight and surrendered the occupying power to the British for a month on June 1. The Stör Canal in the southeast (Mueß district) and the eastern shore of Lake Schwerin acted as a demarcation line between the Allies for a few weeks. According to the agreements of the allies Great Britain, the Soviet Union and the USA of September 12 and November 14, 1944, respectively, on the division of Germany, the city was then handed over to the Red Army.

Soviet occupation zone and GDR period
After the Second World War, the city became the seat of government for the state of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, which was renamed Mecklenburg in 1947 on Soviet orders. From 1945 to 1949 Schwerin was under the military administration of the Soviet power. The Schwerin Border Treaty was concluded here on September 21, 1945. The number of inhabitants rose from about 64,000 to 88,200 between 1939 and 1946 because of the reception of refugees, which led to a shortage of housing. The situation worsened when the Russian military had the Schlossgartenviertel between Cecilienallee and Faulem See evacuated on July 12, 1945; additional living space was occupied by state authorities. Makeshift shelters in barracks, basement apartments and living quarters were part of the cityscape. After residents fled to West Germany, the situation eased somewhat after 1948, but the creation of new living space was still one of the most urgent tasks. In 1949, construction of new apartments began with the construction of three apartment blocks on the Schwälkenberg. The municipal housing company was initially the main sponsor of housing construction after 1950.

The office of the Soviet secret police NKVD was located on Demmlerplatz. Numerous, often innocent, people from all over Mecklenburg were imprisoned there and arbitrarily sentenced to severe sentences by Soviet military tribunals. In 1954, the Stasi district office took over the complex and continued to use it as a place of detention.

Opposition to the SED rule and dictatorship in the GDR emerged early on. Four students from the Goethe High School were expelled from the school as members of the Young Community in 1953, against which there was widespread protest. On June 17, 1953, there were protest meetings of workers in the Bau-Union, the Abus works and the cigarette factory, but strikes were not enforced.


With the administrative reform of 1952, the states were dissolved and replaced by districts. Schwerin, with 96,625 inhabitants at the time, became the capital of the Schwerin district and the seat of the district administration of the Schwerin-Land district. The city itself did not belong to this district, but formed its own urban district. The former Görries military airfield became an industrial site between 1954 and 1970. The VEB brewery Schwerin set up a company holiday camp in the Forsthof.

The Schwerin housing cooperative was founded in 1957. From 1955 to 1974 the Weststadt was expanded as a prefabricated housing estate, and from 1962 to 1972 prefabricated buildings were erected in Lankow. The settlement of industry in Schwerin-Süd from 1972 onwards led to a need for workers and thus to an increase in the number of inhabitants. In 1971 construction began on the Großer Dreesch in the south of the city, which later became the most populous district of Schwerin.

The building stock of the old town, however, visibly deteriorated. Since 1978, new residential buildings have been built on the Great Moor in the city center, after old, neglected buildings there were demolished and piled up on the Burgsee. The design of the inner-city prefabricated buildings was loosened up by retaining the historical street layouts, partially clinker facing the facades and the beveling of the roofs.

At the end of the 1960s, the plan was to demolish all of Schwerin's inner city, except for a few particularly historically significant buildings, and to replace them with prefabricated buildings. However, these plans failed due to a lack of money. With the exception of a few reconstructions, concepts and plans for redesigning the historic districts were not implemented due to high development costs. The goal set in the 1980s to bring every apartment into a warm, dry and structurally safe condition by 1990 was unattainable given that 17,000 of the 44,000 residential units were in urgent need of repair. A citizens' initiative, architects, preservationists and photographers as well as the fact that at the end of the 1980s there was no money for a large-scale demolition saved the architecturally valuable Schelfstadt. It wasn't until the 1980s that some half-timbered buildings were also renovated.

In publicly accessible facilities, the stadium on Lambrechtsgrund was built in 1953–1956 and the pet park in Zippendorf (from 1974 zoological garden), 1959–1962 the sports and congress hall, until 1964 the television tower with tower café and in 1970 the district museum and the open-air museum Schwerin-Mueß .

In November 1979, one of the first movements of the opposition environmental movement was in Schwerin. initiated by Jörn Mothes the tree planting movement in the GDR.

In 1986 a passenger plane crashed on the way from Minsk shortly before landing in Berlin-Schönefeld. 72 people died, including 20 schoolchildren from a 10th grade at the Ernst Schneller School in Schwerin.

On October 23, 1989 the first Monday demonstration took place in Schwerin, for which 50,000 people gathered at the cathedral and in the old garden. In advance, the SED district leadership had organized a counter-demonstration in the Old Garden, which ended in a fiasco. Many comrades joined the New Forum demonstration. Six fighters from combat group unit 410 of the railway refused to work against the demonstration of the New Forum at 2:30 p.m. The mood of the Schwerin population was opposed to the SED dictatorship. A march with thousands of candles in their hands and the united shout "No violence" set 40,000 to 50,000 peaceful citizens in motion at 5:00 pm. They marched from the Old Garden through Werderstrasse, across the Schelfmarkt, then around the Pfaffenteich. Hundreds of lit candles were placed in front of the arsenal. A glass memorial plaque on the arsenal still bears witness to the Schwerin’s first major protest march.

Since the reunification
After reunification, Schwerin became the state capital of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania on October 27, 1990. The decision was preceded by a competition with the Hanseatic city of Rostock, in which Schwerin made the race. The criteria were the historical role of Schwerin as the seat of the dukes and the state parliament from 1948 to 1952 and existing buildings that could be used for offices, ministries and the government. In addition, Rostock saw the potential to become a science and business center even without the status of a state capital. Private individuals also campaigned for Schwerin as the capital, the flower woman Bertha Klingberg collected 17,000 signatures for it.


In 1993 the last Russian occupation troops left the city. During a district reform in 1994, Schwerin remained independent and the Schwerin-Land district was dissolved. Even during the district reform of 2011, Schwerin retained its status as a district-free city after plans that would have led to the integration of Schwerin in a district of West Mecklenburg failed as a result of a ruling by the state constitutional court.

From 1991 the castle and the historical areas of the old town, Schelfstadt and Feldstadt were thoroughly renovated as part of the urban development funding. From the end of the 1990s the Werdervorstadt and since 2004 the Paulsstadt were also designated as redevelopment areas. The improvements to the residential environment in the large prefabricated building areas of Großer Dreesch, Neu Zippendorf and Mueßer Holz began in 1993. In 1994, the Friedrichsthal district saw the development of the first new residential area that was intended to slow down the movement of residents into the surrounding area. Schwerin received the gold plaque in the nationwide competition for the preservation of historical urban space in the new federal states from 1992 to 1994.

In addition to trade, it was above all culture that developed. The Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania Film Festival has been organized since 1991; In 1993 the new open-air theater was inaugurated.

The € 2 commemorative coin with the Schwerin Castle motif was issued in 2007 on the occasion of the Federal Council Presidency of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania. In 2009, Schwerin hosted the Federal Garden Show, which attracted 1.86 million visitors. The extensive preparatory work, for example in the palace garden and at the castle lake, began in 2006.

Schwerin garrison
Schwerin was a garrison town for various units of the Mecklenburg military: Grand Ducal Mecklenburg Grenadier Regiment No. 89, Grand Ducal Mecklenburg Field Artillery Regiment No. 60 and Grand Ducal Mecklenburg Jäger Battalion No. 14 (with the restructuring of the army in the North German Confederation in 1867 and the German Empire the troops became part of the Prussian army), later the Reichswehr, the Wehrmacht, the NVA as well as the Soviet / Russian troops and finally the Bundeswehr. The new and old artillery barracks on Ostorfer Berg, Johannes-Stelling-Straße, today the Schwerin tax office and the Werder barracks (today the Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania regional command of the Bundeswehr) date from the time of the monarchy. During the time of National Socialism, new barracks were built during the armament of the Wehrmacht on Johannes-Stelling-Straße (Fritsch barracks - south of the old artillery barracks), on Ziegelsee- / Möwenburgstraße (north of Werder barracks), and an air base in Görries Luftwaffe, as well as three areas in the south of the city on Ludwigsluster Chaussee (today New Garden City - just south of the Großer Dreesch - between Großem Dreesch and Stern Buchholz). In addition, an area in Stern Buchholz, until 2007 Blücher barracks with the armored battalion 403 of the Bundeswehr.

The Werder barracks (Kurt Bürger barracks, command of the 8th motorized rifle division), the old artillery barracks and the area in Stern Buchholz were used by the armed forces of the GDR. All remaining areas were occupied by the Soviet / Russian troops (94th Guards Mot. Rifle Division), which withdrew by April 1993.

Schwerin originally only consisted of the old town. From 1282, some surrounding villages were added (such as Zippendorf, Göhren or Ostorf), which later became independent communities again. From 1705, a decree of the Duke of Mecklenburg resulted in the expansion of the so-called shelves, which developed into a separate town (Neustadt) with the St. Nicholas Church, the Schelfkirche, and the Schelfmarkt. In 1832 it was united with the old town of Schwerin. The city continued to expand in the 19th century. From around 1840 the Paulsstadt was built to the west and in the second half of the 19th century the Feldstadt to the south. After that, with the increasing population, the urban territory began to grow, in addition to incorporations, also a transfer of formerly grand ducal areas into the administrative sovereignty of the city.



Schwerin is located in the west of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania on the southwestern shore of Lake Schwerin in a wooded lake landscape. Other lakes in the city area are the Burgsee, the Faule See, the Grimkesee, the Heidensee, the Große Karausche, the Lankower See, the Medeweger See, the Neumühler See, the Ostorfer See, the Pfaffenteich and the Ziegelsee. Running waters are the Aubach, whose water feeds Lake Schwerin through the connection of several lakes, and the Stör, the natural outflow of the fourth largest German lake that has been developed into a waterway.

The residents like to refer to Schwerin as the “city of seven lakes and forests”. This name goes back to a time when Schwerin did not yet have its current geographical extent and was actually surrounded by only seven lakes. The extensive forests gradually had to give way to urban development; numerous remains of the forest have been preserved, especially on the banks of the lakes. Of the 130.46 km² city area, 28.9 percent is covered with water and 18.5 percent with forest. The height of the city above sea level is 38 meters on the shores of Lake Schwerin and 86.1 meters on the vineyard in the Neumühle district.

The next larger cities are Lübeck approx. 54 kilometers northwest, the Rostock regiopolis approx 69 kilometers northeast and Hamburg approx 94 kilometers west. In terms of spatial planning, the Schwerin regional center belongs to the West Mecklenburg region (with Wismar as an important center on the Baltic coast); it became part of the Hamburg metropolitan region in 2016.

Neighboring communities
The city of Schwerin borders on the following municipalities (clockwise, starting in the northeast on the east bank of Lake Schwerin):
in the district of Ludwigslust-Parchim: Leezen, Raben Steinfeld and Plate (Amt Crivitz), Lübesse (Amt Ludwigslust-Land), Holthusen, Pampow, Klein Rogahn and Wittenförden (all Amt Stralendorf)
in the district of Northwest Mecklenburg: Brüsewitz, Pingelshagen, Klein Trebbow, Seehof and Lübstorf (Amt Lützow-Lübstorf)


City structure

According to Section 11 (2) of the main statute, the city of Schwerin is currently divided into 17 districts, each with a local advisory council. The districts consist of one or more districts. The local advisory councils have between 5 and 15 members, depending on the number of inhabitants. They are determined by the city council after each local election for the duration of the city council's electoral period. The local councils are to be heard on important matters relating to the district and have a right of initiative. The final decisions, however, are made by the city council.

The 17 current districts with their associated districts:
District 1: Schelfstadt, Werdervorstadt, Schelfwerder
District 2: Old Town, Feldstadt, Paulsstadt, Lewenberg
District 3: Großer Dreesch (formerly Dreesch I)
District 4: Neu Zippendorf (formerly Dreesch II)
District 5: Mueßer Holz (formerly Dreesch III)
District 6: Gartenstadt, Ostorf (formerly Haselholz, Ostorf)
District 7: Lankow
District 8: Weststadt
District 9: Krebsförden
District 10: Wüstmark, Göhrener Tannen
District 11: Görries
District 12: Friedrichsthal
District 13: Neumühle, Sacktannen
District 14: Warnitz
District 15: Wickendorf, Medewege
District 16: Zippendorf
District 17: Mueß
To the south of the Neumühle district is an approximately 12 hectare enclave that belongs to the Klein Rogahn community.



Schwerin is located north of an ice edge from the Vistula Ice Age. The relief was shaped by different phases and seasons of the Brandenburg stage of the Vistula glaciation. There are hilly basement and terminal moraine courses in the western part and a sand area in the south and east of the city. The heights of the terminal moraine in the west reach 86.1 m above sea level at Neumühle.

Some of the lakes, such as the Lankower and Neumühler See, were created after the ice had receded from former meltwater channels that were permanently filled with water.

The Schweriner See lies in a pre-Pleistocene depression that extends from Wismar to Lewitz. The body of water was shaped as a tongue basin during the Frankfurt phase of the Vistula Ice Age. The glacier gate with meltwater runoff towards the Elbe glacial valley existed in the Mueß area. Later glacial phases left moraine material in the lake, such as at the level of the Paulsdamm, which separates the inner and outer lake, as well as to the lakes that are adjacent today, such as the Ziegelsee.



Schwerin has a moderate climate. The mean annual temperature from 1961 to 1990 was 8.4 ° C. The difference between the mean temperature of the warmest and coldest month was 17.2 degrees. An average of 621 millimeters of precipitation fell per year and square meter. Compared to north-west Germany, spring is cooler due to harsh north-east winds. The summer heat is softened by the proximity to the Baltic Sea, this body of water has a warming effect in autumn.