France’s Armed Forces in the Palatinate, 1945-1999
May 9, 2021 – January 29, 2022
May 8, 2020 will be the seventy-fifth anniversary of the end of World War II. To mark this occasion, the new special exhibition at the Historical Museum of the Palatinate will explore rapprochement and friendship between France and Germany.
Both countries repeatedly faced each other as enemies until 1945. The French army arrived in the Palatinate as a victor and a liberator from Nazism at the end of World War II and remained until 1999.
Even though the French armed forces formed a closed community during this period, there were manifold points of contact with the local population.
Town twinnings that improved Franco-German relations started being entered in the mid-1950s. Over eighty cities and towns in the Palatinate alone still maintain partnerships with French municipalities. Dialogue between German and French citizens has ultimately produced lifelong friendships, romances and marriages, representing the most tangible element of peaceful cultural contact.
The exhibition will display photographic documents and objects of cultural memory from German and French private and public collections.