"History Live", 10 November 1989: At Checkpoint Charlie [1/2]



November 10 1989
Berlin, Friedrichstraße border crossing (Checkpoint Charlie)
Created By: Dagmar Lipper

License: Creative Commons License

Crowds of people on the West side of the Friedrichstraße border crossing (Checkpoint Charlie), which was one of the seven street crossings between East and West Berlin (between the Soviet and US American sectors) while the Wall was up. Checkpoint Charlie was designated for use by foreign nationals, affiliates of the Allied Forces and diplomats


allies, crowd, flag, graphic art, guard room, night, opening of the border, warning sign


fall of the Berlin Wall, November 9, 1989, television


Günter Schabowski , Kohl, Helmut Josef Michael, Willy Brandt


Checkpoint Charlie

Text in image

Allied / Checkpoint Charlie

Other items in this set


"In the weeks around the fall of the Wall, I really had the feeling that I was experiencing history live; I felt I was actually taking part in historical events. On 9 November I watched the press conference with Günter Schabowski on TV. That was when I understood that GDR citizens were now coming over. But it wasn't until the following morning, when I heard the news on SFB [Sender Freies Berlin] radio, that I realised that they were actually on the move already.

In the evening of 10 November, I went to the town hall in Schöneberg and listened to Willy Brandt's speech – the one with the historical call where he said, 'what belongs together will grow together.' It was a truly moving moment. Being one of the crowds, I realised what Willy Brandt represented for West Berliners: he got standing ovations and people expressed much respect for him. His reception stood in sharp contrast to the booing Helmut Kohl, the Federal Chancellor, got – a little mean, I felt.

Later on in the evening we went to the border crossing at Checkpoint Charlie – just to take a look. West Berliners had lined up for the East Berliners and were handing out sparkling wine in paper cups. While attempting to walk through the crowds, we saw Chancellor Helmut Kohl again who struck me as being rather tall. He was surrounded by bodyguards, but still very much in the middle of things."

Dagmar Lipper (West Berlin)