1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Spandau

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search

SPANDAU, a town of Germany, in the Prussian province of Brandenburg, at the confluence of the Havel and Spree, 8 m. N.W. of Berlin, of which it is practically a suburb, on the main lines of railway to Hanover and Hamburg respectively. Pop. (1885), 31,463; (1895), 55,813; (1905), 70,295 (including a garrison of about 5000). The town has of recent years made marked progress, its trade being enhanced by an excellent railway service with Berlin and improved navigation on the Havel. The fortifications, which were strengthened after the war, 1870-71, for the protection of the arsenal, have been razed on the northern and eastern sides, and of its former defences none remain except the citadel and a line of works along a ridge of hills to the south of the town. The Julius tower in the citadel, wdiich is surrounded by water, contains the Imperial war treasure (Reichskriegsschatz),—a sum of £6,000,000 in gold, kept in readiness for any warlike emergency, and reserved from the indemnity paid by France after the war of 1870–71. Spandau contains four Protestant churches, a Roman Catholic church, a gymnasium and a school of musketry. Besides numerous barracks, there are various military establishments appropriate to an important garrison town; and its chief industries are connected with the preparation of munitions of war. The government factories for the manufacture of small arms, artillery, gunpowder, &c, cover upwards of 200 acres, and employ about 6000 workmen. The other industries are not very important; they comprise miscellaneous manufactures, fishing, boat-building, and some shipping on the Havel.

Spandau is one of the oldest places in the Altmark, and received civic rights in 1232. It afterwards became a favourite residence of the Hohenzollern electors of Brandenburg, and was fortified in 1577–1583. In 1635 it surrendered to the Swedes, and in 1806 to the French, A short investment in 1813 restored it to Prussia.

See Zech and Günther, Geschichtliche Beschreibung der Stadt und Festung Spandau (Spandau, 1847), and Kuntzemüller, Urkundliche Geschichte der Stadt und Festung Spandau (Spandau, 1881).