Baden-Württemberg, Germany Historical Geography

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Historical Background[edit | edit source]

  • Baden-Württemberg is a state in southwest Germany, east of the Rhine. Baden-Württemberg is a parliamentary republic and partly sovereign, federated state which was formed in 1952 by a merger of the states of Württemberg-Baden, Baden and Württemberg-Hohenzollern. The largest city in Baden-Württemberg is the state capital of Stuttgart, followed by Karlsruhe and Mannheim. Other cities are Freiburg im Breisgau, Heidelberg, Heilbronn, Pforzheim, Reutlingen and Ulm.
  • Baden-Württemberg is formed from the historical territories of Baden, Prussian Hohenzollern, and Württemberg, and also parts of Swabia (Schwaben).
  • The majority of people in this region continued to be Roman Catholics, even after the Protestant Reformation influenced populations in northern Germany.
  • In the late-nineteenth and early-twentieth centuries, numerous people emigrated from this mostly rural area to the United States for economic reasons.
  • After World War II, the Allies established three federal states in the territory of modern-day Baden-Württemberg: Württemberg-Hohenzollern, Baden, and Württemberg-Baden. Baden and Württemberg-Hohenzollern were occupied by France, while Württemberg-Baden was occupied by the United States.
  • In 1949, each state became a founding member of the Federal Republic of Germany (West Germany). On 16 December 1951, Württemberg-Baden, Württemberg-Hohenzollern and Baden voted via referendum in favor of a joint merger. Baden-Württemberg officially became a state in West Germany on 25 April 1952. Wikipedia

Historical Geography[edit | edit source]

Baden, Hohenzollern, and Württemberg Until 1945

Baden-Wuettemberg regions.png
Country Divisions 1945-1952

Modern Baden-Württemberg
Major Cities and Regions

Baden-Wuerttemberg travel map EN.png

For a larger map, click here.
Modern Baden-Württemberg with Counties (Kreise)

Baden Kreis.png

For a larger map, click here.

Germany was first unified as a nation in 1871. For German research prior to 1945, the Research Wiki, FamilySearch Catalog, and FamilySearch Historical Records are organized by the place names in use from 1871 to 1945. For research in that time period, use the Wiki links in the chart below:

1871 Region

History and Background

Geo-Political Differences Today
FamilySearch Catalog
(organized by 1871 Meyer's Gazetteer)
Wiki Page

Instructions for Research Before 1945


1952: Merged into current state of Baden-Württemburg (Map)



1952: Merged into current state of Baden-Württemberg (Map)

Preussen, Hohenzollern


1951: Merged with Baden and Hohenzollern to become the current state of Baden-Württemberg (Map)