Welcome to the House of the Wannsee Conference!
On 20 January 1942, this villa was the venue for a meeting of high-ranking representatives of the Nazi regime – party functionaries and representatives of the ministries, as well as SS and police officials. The meeting was convened by Reinhard Heydrich, Head of the Security Police and the Security Service of the SS. As announced in the letter of invitation, the meeting was to discuss the ‘final solution of the Jewish question’ – a phrase that meant the systematic murder of all Jews in Europe.
This act of mass murder had already been authorised on the highest levels of the regime and was already happening in eastern Poland, Serbia and the occupied territories of the Soviet Union. Even before attending this meeting – only later called the Wannsee Conference –, the participants had also actively engaged in measures persecuting the Jewish population and had been in touch to exchange information on the measures taken.
Our exhibition shows the individual phases of the persecution of Jews across Europe. At the same time, it addresses the involvement of the institutions whose representatives were present at the meeting in Wannsee in January 1942. In the last section of the exhibition, we focus on the post-war period and the question of how that meeting, and the villa where it took place, were dealt with.