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February 13, 2015

Interesting Then and Now Photos of Dresden 70 Years Ago, After the Firebombing

In the last months of World War II, Allied bombers from the British Royal Air Force and the United States Army Air Force conducted several major bombing raids on the eastern German city of Dresden. Beginning on the night of February 13, 1945, more than 1,200 heavy bombers dropped nearly 4,000 tons of high-explosive and incendiary bombs on the city in four successive raids. An estimated 25,000 people were killed in the bombings and the firestorm that raged afterward. More than 75,000 dwellings were destroyed, along with unique monuments of Baroque architecture in the historic city center.

On the 70th anniversary of the devastating raids, Getty Images' photographer Sean Gallup has revisited the sites of historic photographs of Dresden and digitally merged them with present day scenes.


A statue on the tower of City Hall looking down at the ruins of the city centre (Richard Peter senior, Archive Photos) and the same scene on 12 February 2015.

Moritzstrasse and the Juedenhof palace in 1946 (Fred Ramage, Keystone) and the same area on 7 February 2015.

The ruins at Theaterplatz square in 1946 (Fred Ramage, Keystone) and the square today, including the Catholic Hofkirche church (C) and Residenzschloss Dresden palace (R), on 7 February 2015.

The ruins of the Frauenkirche church and the empty pedestal for a statue of Martin Luther in 1946 (William Vandevert, The LIFE Picture Collection) and the reconstructed church and statue on 22 January 2015.

The ruins of the city centre, including Prager Strasse (The Evening Standard) and the same view on 7 February 2015.

Women in 1946 carrying bricks outside the Martin Luther church (Fred Ramage, Keystone) and the same area on 12 February 2015.

The ruins of buildings around Neumarkt square and a fountain with a statue in 1946 (William Vandevert, The LIFE Picture Collection) and the same scene on 22 January 2015.

From left, propaganda director Heinz Grunewald, Dresden mayor Walter Weidauer and town architect Dr C Herbert in March 1946 outside City Hall (Fred Ramage/Hulton Archive) and the same setting on 12 February 2015.

A portion of the Zwinger art museum in 1946 (William Vandevert, The LIFE Picture Collection) and on 12 February 2015.




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