Basel, Strasbourg Monument/Strassburger Denkmal. Photo/Foto: TES.

The Strasbourg Monument

The monument Strassburger Denkmal) opposite the train station  in Basel (Basel Bahnhof SBB) is dedicated to the French-German war of 1870-1871.

The city belonged to the Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation until 1681 but was conquered by Louis XIV (1638-1715) in 1681.  The Franche-Comté and the capital Besançon were annexed by Louis XIV  in 1678. This region belonged to the Spanish-Habsburger dynasty.

In the Franco-German war of 1870-1871, however, the roles were reversed and Strasbourg was conquered by the Prussian King William I (1797-1888) after a siege of two months (September-October 1870). The king became German Emperor in Versailles in 1871. The French emperor Napoleon III (1808-1873) lost his throne.

The memorial is an initiative of the city of Strasbourg. Basel supported and aided the citizens of Strasbourg in and after the war. The Bourbaki Panorama in Lucerne is also a reminder of this war.

The monument was designed by Fréderic-Auguste Bartholdi in 1895 (1834-1904). This artist also created the Statue of Liberty in New York (1886) and the Lion of Belfort (1880).