Westminster College Students Recreate, Then Tear Down, the Berlin Wall
Westminster has a special connection to the wall; it was here, in 1946, that Winston Churchill delivered his famous Iron Curtain speech, and the college owns eight sections of the wall, the largest contiguous piece in the world outside Berlin.
Last spring the German Embassy contacted Westminster officials about participating in some activities to commemorate the falling of the wall. This week, there will be films and debates and a poster contest. But undoubtedly the highlight will be at 6:53 this evening -- exactly when the original wall fell 20 years ago (Missouri time) -- when students will topple a replica of the Berlin Wall they built themselves.
|A replica of the Berlin Wall, built by students at Westminster College.|
Unlike the original wall, which was concrete and steel, the replica was made from lumber and drywall. Each section is eight feet tall and four feet long. "It's the same thickness as a wall in your house," says Mohr. "It's close to the dimensions of the real Berlin Wall. The real wall was actually two walls with space in between to keep people from jumping over."
The real wall was also topped by barbed wire, but the replica will only have cardboard tubes.
Last week, the eight sections of the replica wall were displayed on the Westminster campus and in the town of Fulton and neighboring William Woods University and taken to local schools. Students and townspeople were invited to paint their own graffiti in imitation of the painting on the original wall.
|Foreground: original Berlin Wall. Background: Berlin Wall of Westminster.|