Cities & Culture

Leistikowstrasse Memorial and Cultural Centre Potsdam

This site acts as a terrifyingly authentic window to its past life as the central remand prison run by the Soviet military counter-intelligence agency.

Between the summer of 1945 and the 1980s, Leistikowstrasse 1 in Potsdam was the site of the central remand prison run by the Soviet military counter-intelligence agency. During the summer of 1945, the old rectory in Potsdam was captured by the Soviet military counter-intelligence agency and repurposed. The permanent exhibition focuses on the building's history and the fate of its detainees throughout its many multimedia stations.

Cells have been preserved to this day with original wooden beds, detention rooms, bricked-up passages and windows, huge bars and panels. Combined with what's left of the barriers and the foundations of the day release cell, the centre paints a bleak picture of repression and injustice. The cell walls in the basement are covered with German and Russian graffiti, which shows how the prisoners were isolated and deprived of any rights. In addition to the exhibition, a 2.5-kilometre trail takes visitors on an informative journey through the history of "Military Town No 7", the local former secret service town, with plenty to see along the way. Opening times: April to October: Tuesday to Sunday 2 pm–6 pm, November to March: Tuesday to Sunday 1 pm–5 pm

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