Where: Berlin, Eastern Germany
What’s in store: Symbol of recent downfall of Communism so grab yourself a piece of modern history
Bag a bargain: Head down to the East Side Gallery for amazing graffiti murals and the most authentic wall chunks
What’s it worth: From $20 for part of a brick to $75,000 to a 6000lb section
Where it’s at
The Berlin Wall was raised on August 13th 1961 as a symbol of Cold War Communism, a physical division between American, British, French and Soviet sectors of the city. This divided Berlin into a city split from East to West, with many families divide on a brutal day of conflict.
It stood as a concrete reminder of the Great War and the post war politics of occupation and domination. After the collapse of Communism, the wall was torn down by the people of Berlin in 1989, the 100 mile barbed wire barricade and 12ft concrete wall were broken into a living gallery of small rocks of graffiti daubed concrete which dispersed throughout the globe. Pieces of the wall are now highly prized by collectors, with this symbol of oppression scattered across mantelpieces all over the world.
Where to bag a bargain
The East Side Gallery in East Berlin is the longest remaining stretch of the wall still preserved. It is covered with murals and paintings created by artists from all over the world. There is also a marquee of “authentic” wall relics and memorabilia.
How To Spot A Good Buy
Beware of imitations! Not every spray paint daubed concrete lump is the authentic article. Try to find out where the seller acquired the piece as the pieces are relatively new in circulation, especially if you are buying without viewing. If you buy from Berlin be sure to check the colour match of the concrete against the remaining sections of the wall.
What’s It Worth?
The American market for Cold War memorabilia is phenomenal. The Berlin Wall Commemorative Group supplies 6000lb sections of the wall to Presidential Libraries, Museums, Universities and private collectors at between $35,000 to $75,000 a throw. These are increasing in value as no new supply will ever exist… at least until the next revolution!
Berlin Wall Online
Comprehensive history of the Berlin Wall from Communism to present day.