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coat of arms Germany map
Coat of arms of the municipality of Helgoland
Map of Germany, position of the municipality of Helgoland highlighted

Coordinates: 54 ° 11 '  N , 7 ° 53'  E

Basic data
State : Schleswig-Holstein
Circle : Pinneberg
Height : 40 m above sea level NHN
Area : 4.2 km 2
Residents: 1306 (Dec. 31, 2019)
Population density : 311 inhabitants per km 2
Postal code : 27498
Area code : 04725
License plate : PI
Community key : 01 0 56 025
Address of the
municipal administration:
Lung Wai 28
27498 Heligoland
Website : www.helgoland.de
Mayor : Jörg Singer (independent)
Main island of Helgoland (in front) and the dune in the aerial photo

Helgoland [ ˈhɛl.ɡoˌlant ], also called Deät Lun ( Helgoland Frisian "Das Land", English Heligoland ), is a North Sea island in the German Bight . The originally larger island broke up in 1721; since then as there dune called neighboring island .

Measured from the east coast of the main island to the west coast of Schleswig-Holstein near Sankt Peter-Ording , Heligoland is 48.5 km from the mainland. There are different data on the number of inhabitants: The Statistical Office for Hamburg and Schleswig-Holstein gives 1246 (December 31, 2017, update based on the 2011 census); according to the municipal administration it was on the same date in 1469.

The island group of Helgoland and Düne has belonged to German territory since 1890 and is still integrated into the Pinneberg district ( Schleswig-Holstein ) as a non-governmental municipality of Helgoland . Special regulations apply to both islands: The municipality is part of the German economic area, but is not part of the customs area of ​​the European Union , and German consumption taxes are not levied.


The island did not have a clear name before the 19th century. It was often referred to with variants of the High German Heiligland , once even as the island of the Holy Virgin Ursula. Theodor Siebs summarized the critical discussion of the name in the 19th century in 1909 with the thesis that, based on the Frisian self-designation of the Heligoland as Halunder , the island name meant high country (similar to Hallig). In the discussion following Jürgen Spanuth , Wolfgang Laur once again adopted the original name Heiligland . The Heligoland variant, which has appeared since the 16th century, was created by scholars who latinized a North Frisian form of Helgeland, as they read it as a reference to the legendary hero Helgi . The discussion is made more difficult by the disagreement about which of the names given really meant the island of Heligoland, and by the desire to make the island appear sacred even today.


Helgoland, postcard, 1900
Historical map of Heligoland 1893
View from Lummenfelsen to Heligoland's landmark: the Nathurn Stak , known as Lange Anna

Because of its location on the open sea, Heligoland is often referred to as “Germany's only offshore island”. But neither in the geographical sense nor in the legal sense (in relation to today's law) is the island in the area of ​​the high seas . The island, together with the entire German Bight, belongs to the shelf area (continental shelf) and therefore (in contrast to Madeira in the Atlantic ) not to the deep sea area on the high seas. The 12-mile zone in front of the mainland or the offshore islands, which has been valid since 1995, overlaps with that around Heligoland, so that no international waters separate the island from the mainland.

Geographical location

Heligoland, the main island of which forms a municipality in the Pinneberg district in Schleswig-Holstein together with the secondary island Düne , represents the north-western boundary of the Heligoland Bay within the German Bight .

The land area consists of the approximately 1 km² main island and the 0.7 km² island dune and is located about 67 kilometers southwest of the southern tip of the island of Sylt , 47 kilometers west of the west coast of the Eiderstedt peninsula , 62 kilometers northwest of the Elbe estuary , 57 kilometers northwest the Lower Saxony coast near Cuxhaven , 43 kilometers north of Wangerooge , 70 kilometers northeast of Norderney and 95 kilometers northeast of Borkum . The location of Heligoland in the geographic coordinate system ( WGS 84 ) is 54 ° 11 ′ north latitude and 7 ° 53 ′ east longitude .

The size of the municipality is given as 4.2 km². This includes marine areas in the port area.

Main island and dune, seen from the Funny Girl when approaching Heligoland

The main island

Contemporary representation of the view from the northern tip, 1826
View from Bread Hörn to the southeast, 2018

The main island is divided into five areas: Oberland , Mittelland and Unterland as well as, created in the 20th century by landfill, Nordostland and Südhafen. The Unterland with the port is in the east and south of the island, the Oberland in the north and west, and the smaller Central Plateau in the southwest. The settlement is about half in the Unterland and half in the Oberland. Many public institutions can be found in the north-east of the country.

The island has a small sand bathing beach in the south next to the landing stage and falls in steep cliffs in the north, west and south-west about 50 m to the sea, which is up to 56 m deep in the south-west Heligoland basin . The sandy beach in the north is not suitable for swimming due to the strong current. At the northwest end of the main island is the most famous landmark of Heligoland - the 48  m high surf pillar Lange Anna . The entire surface of the Oberland and the Central Plateau were shaped by the bunker being blown up in 1947 and the subsequent bombing. At 61.3  m, the highest elevation on the island and in the Pinneberg district, which has not been officially called " Pinneberg " since 1998 and is marked with a summit cross, was also created.

Panorama of the undeveloped part of the Helgoland Oberland from the Pinneberg ; the lowlands are hidden


The neighboring island dune is beyond the small strait roads , in northern harbor and Südreede is divided, just one kilometer east of the main island helgoländischen. It is known as a bathing island or a flat beach island and was connected to Heligoland by a natural dam until the New Years flood in 1721 . The small Heligoland airfield next to the campsite and an old and new bungalow village is also laid out on it.


On Heligoland there is a typical maritime climate with year-round precipitation and only slight daily temperature fluctuations.

With an average of 6.4 ° C, the island has the mildest winter climate in Germany; Winter lows below 0 ° C are rare. The North Sea, warmed by the Gulf Stream, with a water temperature of around 5 ° C in winter, acts as a heat store . The cold north-east and east winds from Russia are weakened, the winter temperatures can be up to 10 degrees higher than in Hamburg , for example . However, there is frequent fog and little sunshine in winter; Snow rarely falls.

Spring starts late and temperatures usually only rise significantly from May.

In summer the temperatures are around 21 ° C or just below, while at night it is hardly cooler with 13 to 16 ° C. In addition, there is regular rainfall with alternating sunshine. The water temperatures in the North Sea rise to 16 to 17 ° C by August. In 1962, a permanent measuring station started operating off Heligoland; it measures water temperature, salinity and other parameters. Since the beginning of her work, the average water temperature has increased by 1.7 degrees.

Autumn begins in September, is often still quite warm and lasts longer; it is the wettest time of the year with mild temperatures around 10 ° C and about 15 to 20 rainy days per month.

The annual average temperature is 9 ° C, the annual rainfall is around 700 mm. Extreme values were measured at −11.2 ° C in February 1956 and +28.7 ° C in July 1994. Heligoland has more hours of sunshine than the German mainland.

At the beginning of the 20th century there were stately, regularly fruiting fig trees on the island. From this time there is still a very old mulberry tree in the Oberland . Attempts to plant out hemp palms , honey palms and other palms as well as other subtropical plants that are not or only partially hardy on the German mainland ( laurel , yucca , cordyline , holm oak and others) have been successful since the 1980s.

Climate diagram
J F. M. A. M. J J A. S. O N D.
Temperature in ° Cprecipitation in mm
Source: [1] ; wetterkontor.de ; [2]
Monthly average temperatures and precipitation for Heligoland (2019-2020)
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Max. Temperature ( ° C ) 7.7 7.7 7.8 11.1 13.1 18.7 18.2 20.8 17.3 13.9 9.5 8.2 O 12.9
Min. Temperature (° C) 5.3 4.4 4.7 6.8 8.9 13.6 14.2 16.4 14.0 10.9 6.6 5.8 O 9.3
Temperature (° C) 6.5 6.4 6.3 8.6 10.7 16.0 16.3 18.6 15.8 12.5 8.2 7.1 O 11.1
Precipitation ( mm ) 101 147 29 13 16 50 71 84 142 117 125 62 Σ 957
Hours of sunshine ( h / d ) 0.8 1.7 6.5 8.8 8.5 9.3 7.1 8.2 4.9 3.1 1.3 1.4 O 5.1
Rainy days ( d ) 12 8th 10 9 9 9 10 10 11 12 15th 13 Σ 128
Water temperature (° C) 6th 4th 5 7th 10 14th 17th 18th 17th 15th 12 8th O 11.1
Humidity ( % ) 88 86 86 84 83 83 82 80 79 82 84 86 O 83.6
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
  Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Source: [3] ; wetterkontor.de ; [4]


Geological formation of the rock island

Zechsteinmeer in the late antiquity

The geologically relevant history of the formation of Heligoland began around 260 million years ago in the geological age of the Permian at the end of the ancient world . In the beginning Zechstein , the second division of the Permian, there were sea ​​invasions in Europe and America on the supercontinent Pangea and so the sea penetrated into the area of ​​today's Central Europe. The Heligoland region lay in this Zechstein Sea , in the so-called Elbe trough . Due to the arid climate , however, the water evaporated again over time, leaving limescale , dolomites , anhydrites and salts as evaporation residues, so-called evaporites , which were examined and determined as Zechstein sediments in northern Germany .

An important palaeontological find in 1910 was the 51.5 cm headstock of a Capitosaurus helgolandiae (Schröder), an ancient amphibian from the Temnospondyli group . The weight of the animal, which lived in the Middle Triassic around 245 million years ago, is not known. His eyes were small and high on his head. Its habitat were periodically draining river deltas and bodies of water that existed in the area of ​​today's North Sea at that time.

Rock formation in the Mesozoic

Heligoland on a postcard, ca.1890 to 1900
Northern tip of Heligoland, around 1929/30

The most important rock-forming processes for Heligoland took place in the early Mesozoic . The tropical and subtropical climate prevailing at the beginning of the Triassic dominated the weathering of the Variscan mountains in the surrounding mainland. The climate favors lateritic weathering , which shows high iron and aluminum contents in the end product . The oxidation of these weathering products leads to a strong red coloration of the typical red sandstone sediments in Central Europe. The green bands of the rock show the deposited copper.

In the red sandstone, large amounts of the weathering material from the highlands were removed and sedimented in lower-lying regions . In the Heligoland area, these deposits are more than 1000 meters thick. They form the visible part of the rock island.

The area of ​​Heligoland was also a sedimentation area in the following geological section of the Muschelkalk . The deposits from this period are more than 300 meters thick. A large number of fossil finds also prove the favorable living conditions at this time. Various fish , marine dinosaurs , mussels and snails were found .

Sediment layers can also be found in the Heligoland region from the Cretaceous Period , which began 140 million years ago . During this time, the entire North Sea area was a marine area. In the marine area, a rich flora and fauna developed under warm and humid climatic conditions , so that the chalk layers are extremely rich in fossils.

Salt Rise in the Tertiary

The great thickness of the sediment layers in the North Sea area - even in the Mesozoic era  - is also due to the fact that the North Sea area was a subsidence area. Thus, even in the shallower seas of the Buntsandstein and Tertiary, these subsidence areas could be filled again and again with the weathering material transported from the mountains. Under the pressure of the overlying material, the underlying layers increasingly solidified.

The elevation of the Heligoland red sandstone rock can also be seen in direct connection with this consolidation and thus the increase in density and pressure on the lower layers.

Over time, the layers of the Triassic, Cretaceous and Tertiary were deposited over the Permian salt rocks in the Middle Ages. Each new sedimentation layer also had the consequence that the underlying sediments were further solidified and compacted by the load of the overlying sediments.

The Felswatt ( surf platform ) at low tide near the Long Anna

However, the salt rocks below can only be compacted to a maximum density of 2.2 g / cm³. Since the density of a layer increases with increasing depth as a result of increasing pressure, a density anomaly occurred in the area of ​​the Zechstein salts . The salt rock reacted plastically to the increasing pressure and tended to rise preferentially in weak areas such as faults in order to achieve pressure relief. During the ascent, however, the layers on top were also lifted. This phenomenon is referred to as a cushion of salt with Heligoland at its apex.

The bulging of the red sandstone and the other layers due to the rise of the salt ( salt tectonics ) is also visible in the tectonic structure of Heligoland. The apex of the salt structure runs from north-northwest to south-southeast. This indicates the direction of strike of the overlying cover layers, which can be seen on the abrasion platforms in the northern cliff. The layers have been tilted in the bulge, so that an inclination of the red sandstone rocks of around 17 to 20 degrees can be seen. Thus, on the west side of Heligoland there are layers pointing upwards, while the layers on the east side are pointing downwards.

Overprinting of the newly formed rock island in the Quaternary

The starting point of the overprinting in the Quaternary is the cooling of the climate in the late Tertiary. Three major periods of glaciation have led to a major change in the landscape as far as north-central Europe. In all three ice ages the area between England and Denmark was dry; a North Sea did not exist due to the low sea level (approx. 120–150 m below today's sea level).

During the Elster Ice Age (about 480,000 to 300,000 years ago) and the Saale Ice Age (about 280,000 to 130,000 years ago), glaciation also affected Heligoland, which is still evidence of deposited bedloads and boulders. During this time, the penetration of the ice should also have led to a strong erosion of the raised and tilted layers up to the exposure of the salt structure in the area of ​​the Görtel to the west . Both ice ages left alluvial deposits and deposits and terminal moraines behind.

During the last ice age, the Vistula glaciation (from about 115,000 to 11,700 years ago), the land area between England, the Netherlands, Germany and Denmark was largely free of ice. The ice edge has not reached Heligoland. At the end of the Pleistocene and the beginning of the Holocene , the sea level rose sharply again worldwide; the North Sea formed again ( Flemish Transgression ). About 8,000 years ago, there were two major events in quick succession: the Storegga slide off Norway, which triggered a gigantic tsunami , and the melting of the North American ice sheet and the sudden breakthrough of the meltwater masses from the Agassiz Sea to the Atlantic, which, in addition to a worldwide rise in sea level, will probably again was accompanied by a tsunami. Both events quickly led to the fact that glacial deposits were removed even above the sea level at that time, and island formation began. The North Sea was largely regressed. Helgoland resisted rapid erosion by the sea. There was possibly a land bridge to the Eiderstedt peninsula for a long time . The current depth contour of 12–15 m indicates an earlier connection. This land bridge is seen as partially speculative. It is not possible to say precisely when island formation began and how it took place. The further course of the island's change and shrinkage in historical times up to the 16th century, when the first reasonably usable and reliable maps were drawn, cannot be precisely traced. The rapidly decreasing area since the early Middle Ages, previously shown in some school atlases, is considered possible, but not guaranteed.

The rock formations of the island of Helgoland were added to the list of 77 awarded National Geotopes in 2006.

Development of today's island shape

Natural changes

The main formative natural forces that act on the rocky island are weathering and abrasion from the surf . A total of 15 surf caves a few meters deep are recorded.

When it comes to weathering, the cool winter climate is particularly important. The cold promotes the physical weathering of the rock. The effects of frost fissured and shattered the rock and lifted rock debris as weathering residue that was deposited at the foot of the cliffs . The cliff is slowly pushed back and the island is made smaller.

Typical for Heligoland was the formation of rocky outcrops (horns) with bays (slaps) in between. Over time and under further influence of the sea and weather, these projections can be broken by surf gates , which leave individual rock towers (“stacks”) when the arched connection collapses. The stallion, now known as Lange Anna , is a stack of this kind with a height of over 48 m and the only one that has held up to this day.

Changes made by human hands

Changes in island shapes
from 1910 to the present day
Map of Heligoland with the island of Düne, ( Baedeker’s Northern Germany ), around 1910
Image from NASA's Landsat-7 satellite , 2010

The first human interventions on Heligoland consisted in the extraction of raw materials.

From important was the Middle Ages the shell - and gypsum mining at the former Witte Kliff. This mining contributed to the rapid destruction of the cliffs, which were ultimately so unstable that the last remains collapsed in 1711.

Further prospecting of raw materials remained unsuccessful, so that no further information can yet be given about the occurrence of fossil fuels in the area of ​​Heligoland.

Protective measures continued to change the shape of the island: until the beginning of the 20th century, the rocky island was unprotected and suffered a high loss of land every year due to abrasion and weathering .

At the end of the 19th century, plans began for effective protection against storms and surges. These plans were driven by a heavy military use of the island. The construction of a protective wall on the western side, which is more exposed to weather and surf, began in 1903 and was completed in 1927. In the further course (→  Lobster claw project ) the north and east of the main island as well as the dune were included in the protection and expansion measures, which were the basis for the creation of the northeast area and the constant enlargement of the Helgoland dune.

However, the protective walls cannot protect against further weathering. The weathering debris on the base of the cliff coast , which is in places already deposited up to the protective walls, testifies to this . In the past, it was carried away by storm surges, but today it accumulates on the bank walls. As a result of this development, Heligoland is no longer becoming smaller in terms of area, but in the long term it threatens to sink under the cones of debris from weathering, which are slowly turning green.

The last significant and still striking intervention in the shape of the island took place during and after the Second World War : on April 18, 1945, the submarine base at that time was the target of a massive air raid by the Royal Air Force (RAF). The island's buildings were completely destroyed. The RAF used the island as a training target in the following years. The bomb craters in today's Oberland are evidence of the bombings .

Two years later, on April 18, 1947, all military installations on and under the island as well as old ammunition stocks were to be destroyed in a blast to make further use of Heligoland from a military point of view impossible. The detonation of around 6,700 tons of ammunition shook the island with its base to a depth of several kilometers and led to a permanent change in its appearance. (See also: End of World War II and Postwar Period )

Flora and fauna

Felswatt and kelp forests


The rocky mudflats of the Heligoland rock plinth (nature reserve) is a unique habitat in Germany, populated by over 300 species of algae. In the splash zone live small tube wrack and purple wrack , in the upper intertidal zone spiral wrack follows , while the rock wreck is covered by bladder wrack , saw wrack and sea ​​lettuce . Below the low water line, seaweed forests of fingertip , sugar kelp and palm kelp thrive , which penetrate to a depth of 8 m below the low water limit (see list of sea algae from Heligoland ).

As early as 1835, in the early days of tourism, bathers were presented in detail about the abundance of algae; the research results followed z. B. 1863 with Ferdinand Julius Cohn

Island and dune vegetation

"Klippenkohl", the wild form of vegetable cabbage

At the foot of the cliffs there are flushing fringes and fragments of salt marshes with typical salt plants such as purslane wedge marmalade , beach mollusc , beach mugwort , wild turnip and salt chickweed . The wild form of vegetable cabbage (called cliff cabbage by the Heligoland), beach carnation , beach plantain and Danish spoonwort grow on the steep coast . The uplands are covered by grassland . There are dense populations of arrow cress . Because of the strong sea breeze, trees are only found in the hollow of the ornithological station's catch garden and planted in the central plateau.

The majority of the dune consists of gray and white dunes as well as shrubbery made of sea ​​buckthorn or silver olive willow . On the Aade in the south-east of the dune, the rinsing area is populated by potash , sea ​​mustard and chickweed .

As early as the 19th century there are depictions of the flora of Heligoland by Ernst Hallier , Karl Wilhelm von Dalla Torre and Johannes Reinke . The island was a popular seaside resort and that's why researchers like to visit it.


Guillemot rock with gannets , guillemots and kittiwakes

Guillemots , kittiwakes , herring gulls , razorbills , fulmars and, since 1991, the northern gannet breed on the ledges of the Lummenfelsen . During the bird migration in spring and autumn, flocks of migratory birds use the island as a resting place and are ringed and recorded in the Heligoland ornithological station. Helgoland is one of the places in Europe where a particularly large number of bird species have been identified; by 1985 there were already over 370 species. Since then, new first records of bird species have been successful. With 432 documented species, the island is now probably the “most species-rich place” in Europe. (As of June 2014)

Northern gannet

Around 240 different bird species are registered every year. Rarities are regularly observed, which is why the island is visited by bird watchers all year round, especially during the migration times in autumn and spring, when more evidence can be expected. In addition to unusual rarities such as the ruby throat or the warbler , species such as the common crow or rare warbler such as the yellow-browed warbler can be observed every year . In autumn - especially after storms from the northwest - deep sea birds are spotted that otherwise avoid the German bay. Two new species were most recently added in 2014: the desert bullfinch (home: North Africa to Asia) and - with particular attention from the media - the black-browed albatross (home: including the Falkland Islands) at the end of May .

Bird research is inextricably linked with the name Heinrich Gätke . He came to the seaside resort of Helgoland as a painter in 1837 and soon began to hunt, collect and document birds. He made contact with the important ornithologists of his time, and Helgoland developed into a center for bird research. Gätke was a defining figure on the island; unlike other researchers, he lived permanently on Heligoland. Gätke published the research results he had acquired over several decades in 1891 in the book Die Vogelwarte Helgoland . Gätke thus coined the term “ bird observatory ”. The founding of the Helgoland ornithological station can also be traced back to his work . The German Empire acquired his bird collection; it became the basis of the old Heligoland museum.

Protected areas

The marine areas that are directly northwest over west to south of the main island of Helgoland, and those that are immediately north-northwest over east to south of the minor island of Düne , form the nature reserve Helgoländer Felssockel ( CDDA -Nr. 30101; designated 1981; 53 , 4783  km² in size); Apart from a few rocks on the cliff of the main island, both islands do not belong to the NSG areas separated from one another by a narrow sea corridor. The Fauna-Flora-Habitat- Area Helgoland with the Helgoland rock base (FFH No. 1813-391; 55.09 km²) has a similar shape ; it includes small parts of the island - such as some of the rocks on the aforementioned steep coast. Both protected areas are in the bird sanctuary (VSG) sea bird sanctuary Helgoland (VSG No. 1813-491; 1,613.33 km²); apart from a few rocks on this cliff, both islands are not classified as VSG areas. The NSG Lummenfelsen on the island of Helgoland (CDDA no. 82122; 1964; 0.86  ha ) is located in the cliffs (main island ).



Research history

Above Mejer's map from 1652 with five (grave) mounds on the Oberland, below Mejer's idea of ​​an old Heligoland

Theses have been put forward on the prehistory of Heligoland for many centuries.

In the 17th century, an earlier size of the island was initially postulated. The background to these theses was the interest of the Danish king in proving that the island belonged to Schleswig. In 1652 Johannes Mejer drew a map of a large Heligoland, which was often refuted and often defended again. The island was already viewed in 1631 by Johann Isaak Pontanus as the Herthainsel , a Germanic central sanctuary. In addition, at this time there were considerations to see Heligoland as the ancient amber island.

Excavations only started in the time of tourism. Two burial mounds were uncovered by interested laypeople in 1845 and 1893. The finds were not classified in a theory of the great importance of the island in prehistoric times. They were forgotten or lost in museums.

The prehistory was again looked at emphatically in the völkisch movement , for example by Heinrich Pudor .

After the bunkers on Heligoland were blown up, the island was equated with Atlantis in the 1950s, taking up folk ideas from Jürgen Spanuth . Excavations on the island were no longer conceivable. There were never any new important discoveries.

Despite the now extremely precarious source situation, further theories are being taken up and developed with great emphasis, especially by archaeological laypeople. This includes the theory of Bronze Age copper mining, which is still discussed today and cannot be proven by finds. The thesis of a trade in Heligoland red flint seems to be substantiated by finds on the mainland, and lay people particularly like to support it. Old theories, which were often refuted as early as the 19th century, were repeatedly taken up anew, for example by Heike Grahn-Hoek (see section on literature). Albert Panten is a representative of a critical tradition today ; in the 19th century it was Johann Martin Lappenberg , Friedrich Oetker and Ernst Tittel, among others . The archaeologist Claus Ahrens wrote objectively and soberly .

Prehistoric finds

Helgoland flint (red flint; polished)
The Helgoland stone box in the Neues Museum in Berlin

Four mounds could be identified on Heligoland in the 19th century, three of which were clearly barrows from the Bronze Age . In the 17th century eight were still known and named on cards. Claus Ahrens suspects that there were still thirteen hills in total at this time. One can also suspect others that stood on parts of the Oberland that had already been lost in the centuries before through rock erosion. At the Moderberg a stone box grave was uncovered in 1845 by the founder of the seaside resort Jacob Andresen Siemens ; there are remains of the finds in the History Museum of Lund University (LUHM) in Sweden . It is not certain whether there was a burial mound on Flaggenberg . The Kleine Berg (not on the Mejersche map, but south of the Bredeberg with the old Fireblood ) was excavated by Otto Olshausen . He found the Heligoland stone box here , which has been on display again since 2009 in the Museum of Prehistory and Early History , part of the Neues Museum in Berlin. A replica is in front of the Helgoland Museum . The last hills have all disappeared due to the fortification work of the Imperial Navy. This work also resulted in some chance finds, which Ahrens describes in his article. After him, prehistoric finds were last made in 1961 in the rubble near the ornithological station.

The finds from Heligoland flint on the adjacent mainland are also important for the discussion . Artifacts from the red flint of Heligoland can be found up to 300 km in today's inland areas of Germany, the Netherlands and Denmark. Residential or resting places of the early cultures with finds on the mainland could be assigned according to age. The finds of copper disks, however, are undisputedly from the Middle Ages.


In the Mesolithic, the Mesolithic , around 11,600 years to 7,500 years ago, Heligoland slowly became an island due to the sea rise (see Doggerland ). A large number of large and small islands could have emerged in the southern North Sea, which could have been reached from one another, but also from the mainland. Most of these islands would then have sunk if the sea level continued to rise.

The finds suggest that the island has been settled in prehistoric times since the Neolithic, the Neolithic . However, it cannot be proven whether the settlement was uninterrupted. The Neolithic is characterized by the transition to sedentary forms of settlement. Plank boats were developed that were rowed and, when the weather was appropriate, enabled traffic between the mainland and the island.

If one follows the thesis of the uniqueness of the Heligoland flint , one can assume a lively exchange of goods or trade in semi-finished and finished products made of Heligoland flint during this period. Since the time of the funnel beaker culture in the Middle Neolithic (the middle section of the Neolithic) and "in the course of the Bronze Age until the Middle Pre-Roman Iron Age, artefacts from Heligoland flint were produced on a large scale and exported from the island", reports the archaeologist Jaap Beuker . The thesis of the uniqueness of the red flint is also criticized.

In addition, the island is still presented today solely through the visible copper deposits as a center for copper mining, also as an amber island and central Germanic sanctuary. In serious essays, the subjunctive is always used - there are few indications (finds).


Very little information about northern Europe has come down to us from antiquity . But in Pliny the Elder's natural history , the travelogue of Pytheas of Massilia (325 BC), which is no longer extant , is quoted several times . Some authors refer to one passage in the text from Heligoland, which is, however, very controversial.

Pytheas states that a Germanic people, the Guions [or Gutons, depending on the copy of the text by Pliny], live on a swamp of the ocean, ... a day's journey from there is the island of ' Abalus '; this is where the amber is driven by the waves in spring and is actually a congealed excretion from the sea; the residents used it instead of wood for fire and sold it to the neighboring Teutons. Timaeus agrees with him, but calls the island 'Basileia'. "

Further references to literature from antiquity have been provided since the 16th century, but have already been critically discussed by Friedrich Oetker, but positively received by Spanuth or Grahn-Hoek (see literature below). It was always a matter of determining the island's special significance solely through old sources.

middle age

Saint Liudger on the crossing to Heligoland; Illumination from the Vita secunda Liudgeri (11th century)
Medieval copper disk

There are only historically unreliable legends of saints as sources for the early Middle Ages. Around 800 Alkuin wrote about a stay of the Frisian ruler Radbod on Heligoland in the legend of the saints of Bishop Willibrord of Utrecht. Willibrord then tried in vain between 690 and 714 to proselytize the Heligoland Frisians. The Christianization was not until 100 years later by Bishop Liudger of Munster. According to his legend of saints, he is said to have destroyed all of Fosite's shrines and ordained the Heligoland chief's son Landicius as a priest. Customer from the early medieval Holy Land are also Adam of Bremen in his res gestae (deeds report) from the year 1076. In the scholia to the former name, referring to Willibrord as "Fosetisland" but the current name called "Farria" what on may indicate confusion with the Faroe Islands . With all early sources it is controversial whether they refer to Heligoland.

Like the rest of North Frisia , Heligoland was under the Danish crown in the 12th and 13th centuries and was considered Danish from the 14th century. The bailiff and privateer captain Waldemar Zappy, who is in the Danish service, worked on Heligoland at the end of the 14th century. However, there is no evidence that Klaus Störtebeker stayed on the island, although he is said to have been caught near Heligoland in 1401. The island was only associated with his name with the advent of seaside literature. Even today, the island is advertised with the - albeit not verifiable - term "pirate nest".

Heligoland was known as a herring fishing area in the late Middle Ages. During the boom in herring fishing at the end of the 15th century, the Hanseatic cities of Bremen and Hamburg tried to claim ownership of the island. A written source from the Hanseatic period reports the loss of a shipload of copper 1409 near Heligoland. Copper washers were found near the island after World War II and dated to the Middle Ages. In the context of an analysis from 1978 it was assumed that the copper came from Heligoland, which led to many theories (see prehistory ). Another analysis in 1999 suggested the opposite.

Early modern age

Heligoland was initially forgotten when the country was divided in 1544, but then ultimately came to the Duke of Schleswig-Holstein-Gottorf and was - with a Danish interlude in the years 1684–1689 - until 1714/21 to the Gottorf parts in the Duchy of Schleswig . It had the status of a landscape with a high degree of self-government. The herring catches had decreased significantly.

In 1542 the Dithmarsch pirate Peter Wiben settled on the island; he was shot there in 1545 by a troop from Dithmarschen. Shipping, fishing and piloting, which developed from this time on, were important. There was a separate right for stranding on the island. As early as the second half of the 16th century, Duke Adolf I of Schleswig-Holstein-Gottorf had a small permanent military garrison.

Heligoland after separation of the dune (1757)
Drawing by Johann Friedrich Camerer (1758)

In 1630 Hamburg built the first beacon ( fireblood ) on the island. The first pilot examination on Heligoland can be verified in 1656. In 1686 the church, built in 1609, had to be rebuilt; the church tower was not finished until 1706. Denmark occupied the Schleswig-Gottorf island of Helgoland in 1684, but soon had to give it back. In 1709 a new commandant's house was built.

The partial duchy of Schleswig-Holstein-Gottorf was reduced to its Holstein regions after the Great Northern War (1700–1721); it had to give up its Schleswig possessions. Heligoland was conquered by Danish troops as early as 1714 and from then on belonged to the largely unified Duchy of Schleswig under the Danish crown. The New Years flood in 1721 destroyed the Woal, the headland between the red sandstone cliffs of the main island and the eastern Witte Kliff , a limestone cliff whose erosion by the North Sea was accelerated due to the quarry that was operated there until the 17th century . The dune island, which is now used for bathing, formed over the remaining cliffs. It was not until 1723 that a bulwark was built to protect the lowlands on the northeast beach. The island was politically forgotten.

Towards the end of the Danish period the island was visited by naturalists; Georg Christoph Lichtenberg went on a trip in 1773 and reported a lot and enthusiastically; Alexander von Humboldt followed in September 1790 . Since the middle of the 18th century, Heligoland had found interest among the learned public; But visits were still very rare and adventurous.

British Crown Colony 1807–1890

During the British period, Heligoland became the leading seaside resort and “place of longing” for Germans.

Governor William Osborne Hamilton 1808–1815

In the course of the conflict between Denmark and Great Britain in the Napoleonic Wars , British troops occupied the island in 1807 and incorporated it as a crown colony in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland . The reason for this was the continental blockade , which Napoleon had ordered against the United Kingdom in 1806 . The first governor was Corbet James D'Auvergne, but in February 1808 he handed over his office to William Osborne Hamilton (1750-1818). Helgoland developed into a lively smuggling place ; the island took over the function of Hamburg as an overseas port. Many Hamburg and British merchants had representations on Heligoland. Up to 400 ships called at the island every day. The Heligoland pilots knew the routes to the mainland well.

In addition, the island was the first place of recruitment for the King's German Legion ; one of the main organizers was Friedrich von der Betten . Over 2000 soldiers, mostly from Hanover , went to England via Heligoland. The black crowd of Duke Friedrich Wilhelm von Braunschweig escaped completely to England via Heligoland in 1809. In addition, Edward Nicholas (1779-1828), who controlled the secret service activities, resided on the island. Much news ran between England and the continent via Heligoland. The end of the continental lock led to economic decline and insignificance. In the Peace of Kiel on January 14, 1814, Heligoland remained with the British as one of their few acquisitions.

Governor Henry King 1815–1840

View from the dune, from: Friedrich von der Betten: Philosophical-historical-geographical studies on the island of Helgoland or Heiligeland and their inhabitants. Hanover 1826.
Lithograph by Cornelius Suhr (1827)

To his regret, under Henry King, the last British troops left the island in 1821. He now had to rely on his personal authority alone, but he succeeded. In order to counter poverty, Jacob Andresen Siemens founded the seaside resort of Helgoland in 1826 based on the Norderney model . The seaside resort's breakthrough came in 1829 when a congress of the Society of German Natural Scientists and Doctors in Hamburg undertook an excursion to Heligoland. Participants were Justus von Liebig and Adelbert von Chamisso ; Achim von Arnim would also have liked to be there ; Goethe read the reports from the excursion with interest. The trip on the paddle steamer was an impressive experience for the guests . In 1834 the staircase was renewed. The first guest houses were built on the Falm and in the Unterland the Gasthaus Mohr opposite the bathhouse. Opposite the Conversationshaus, the old exchange of the smuggling era, a pharmacy opened.

Rudolf Jordan , marriage proposal on Heligoland , 1834, Altonaer Museum , Hamburg

In this early period of enthusiasm for Heligoland, Rudolf Jordan painted the marriage proposal on Heligoland, which made clear the enthusiasm for the beautiful and natural Heligoland women. The picture gained great popularity.

The revolutionary Harro Harring caused unrest on the island in 1838/39; he also wrote about Heligoland. Heinrich Heine was considered the island's poet in the 19th century. He had visited her in 1829 and 1830. His Heligoland diary in Ludwig Börne: A memorandum from 1840 is still the most important literature against the Heligoland background. His late North Sea poems are also part of the Heligoland literature. In contrast to Norderney, there are no derisive remarks from him about Heligoland. Ludolf Wienbarg's Helgolandbuch was important for the reception of the island . The publisher Julius Campe regularly took summer vacations on the island. From 1840 onwards, Heligoland had more bathers than Norderney, and in 1842 twice as many. For the other poets, actors and writers, cf. Eckhard Wallmann: Helgoland - A German Cultural History (see below, section literature ).

Governors John Hindmarsh 1840-1856 and Richard Pattinson 1857-1863

John Hindmarsh had failed as governor in South Australia before coming to Heligoland. He and Richard Pattinson did not manage to assert themselves on the island. The guests were gladly told that an English policeman who had been fetched from Hindmarsh was beaten up by the Heligoland and sent back to England without having achieved anything.

The anarchic conditions attracted guests seeking freedom. In 1847 they founded a self-governing committee that negotiated prices and organized events with the Heligoland. Unlike in other spas, the nobility did not dominate the seaside society. On the island one saw an ideal equality between the guests and the Heligoland. No papers were checked on the island. The guests went hunting for birds, seals and fish. Shooting was also interpreted as practicing for barricade fighting. The high alcohol consumption and the resulting very free political speeches were reported. Helgoland became the meeting place for the opponents of the Vormärz from the old, not only German-speaking Central Europe. The Austrian opposition was well represented.

Wilhelm Heuer , Der Falm und Unterland, 1855. Heuer showed the elegant life on the island in many pictures.
Christian Morgenstern , The dunes near Helgoland, 1854, Hamburger Kunsthalle (there in the depot)

The visits of the poet Hoffmann von Fallersleben also belong in this context . During a vacation stay on Heligoland on August 26, 1841, he composed the song of the Germans based on the hymn composed by Joseph Haydn in 1797 for the Holy Roman Emperor . In the Heligoland original there was a variant of the third stanza: Strike and shout in unison: Cheer up the German fatherland! The celebrations with revolutionary speeches and lots of alcohol that inspired him to write this song were written as a scandal in the newspapers of the time - not about him, the then little-known German scholar.

The most important island guest for decades was Franz Dingelstedt . Adolf Stahr and Fanny Lewald also frequently visited the island. The topic of many publications was the marriage of the beautiful Heligoland woman Anna Mohr with a count, allegedly the hated Prince Felix von Lichnowsky , who left her behind.

During the revolution of 1848/49 the island was a resort for revolutionaries; some were also able to flee from there to England. Despite the British presence, there was a German-Danish naval battle off Heligoland: in 1849 with ships of the Reichsflotte , which was an attraction for bathers, but otherwise hardly noticed in the German press.

The island's popularity peaked in the mid-19th century. After the revolution, the aristocracy came to the island. Carl Alexander von Sachsen-Weimar-Eisenach was a frequent guest . The advertising for the English Foreign Legion in 1855/56, which was supposed to fight in the Crimean War , represented a first slump in seaside life . The Oberland was littered with many barracks.

Governor Henry Berkeley Fitzhardinge Maxse 1863–1881

The lowlands from the southern tip . The barracks of the British Coast Guard from 1868 can be seen below, next to the beach with bathing carts (only if the dune could not be reached due to a storm), and the theater in the background. The landing bridge from 1869 is still missing. The south beach is still a port area; there are no guest houses here, just a boardwalk.
Stereoscopy , dated July 1873 (date of purchase?), Probably from 1868

Governor Maxse should change the untenable conditions on the island. He created a new constitution for the island, which he could only enforce by force. The islanders went on a tax strike. He installed a coast guard with new barracks in the lowlands to enforce his authority. The Heligolanders no longer had any co-determination rights. The 1864 naval battle of the Prussian and Austrian against the Danish navy was noticed by the public and made the island even more popular in Austria.

The island's casino, which had existed in the Conversationshaus since the seaside resort was founded, was closed in 1871, causing a sharp drop in visitor numbers. For this Maxse founded a theater to increase the attraction of the island. His wife Auguste Rudloff was a former actress of the Vienna Burgtheater . Both were the focus of social life during the season. In its first years there was a lot of construction (see picture), a new road was laid on the northeast beach.

From 1871 the voices in the German press calling for Heligoland for Germany became more aggressive.

Governors Terence O'Brien 1881–1888 and Arthur Cecil Stuart Barkly 1888–1890

Under Terence O'Brien, seaside life developed better again. He was considered correct, strict and fair. The colony's household developed positively. New hotels and guest houses were built on the south beach. The culturally very committed Grand Duchess Sophie von Sachsen-Weimar often stayed on the island ; The Grand Duke of Oldenburg and his family were also regular visitors to the island. Rudolf Lindau often met writers from his circle there; he settled entirely on the island in retirement. There was also a circle around Otto Brahm .

Arthur Barkly came to the island sick; he was often represented in his work by his wife. Her memories of mourning the island's militarization after 1890 were often quoted.

The German Heligoland

The German era is characterized by the construction of fortresses by the navy and increasing mass tourism. Heligoland became a place of national pride.


Parade for the cession of Heligoland to Germany on August 10, 1890
The lighthouse built in 1902 (right) next to its predecessor, which was dismantled a short time later

In 1890 Helgoland went to Prussia through the treaty between the German Empire and the United Kingdom over the colonies and Heligoland .

The official handover of Heligoland took place on August 9, 1890; it took the German side Karl Heinrich von Boetticher ( Secretary of State in the Ministry of the Interior in part) and by the British Governor Barkly. The handover was organized by Adolf Wermuth , both sides were advised by Rudolf Lindau . For reasons of protocol, Kaiser Wilhelm II did not set foot on the island until August 10th - he lacked a British head of state to meet him. In the following transition period, the administration was transferred by decree to a naval officer with the title "Gouverneur von Helgoland" (captain at sea Wilhelm Geiseler) and a civil servant with the title "imperial commissioner for Helgoland" (Adolf Wermuth).

Heligoland was incorporated into the Süderdithmarschen district in the province of Schleswig-Holstein . Due to the colloquial name of the contract ("Helgoland-Sansibar contract", disparagingly also "button contract"), it was roughly simplified that it was an exchange of Sansibar for Helgoland. German national critics spoke of a “swap of trousers for trouser buttons” and accused Chancellor Caprivi of having failed in terms of economic and colonial policy. The Heligoland were not asked for their opinion. According to the opinion of the British as well as the German press and the secret services, the majority of them were against becoming Germans. However, they were economically dependent on the German bathers. It was important for them that, according to the contract, they did not have to pay any taxes, the exemption from customs duties (which still exists today) was guaranteed for 20 years and only the men born after 1890 on Heligoland became conscripted.

Group of visitors in front of the Helgoland conversation house, the meeting point for day visitors, 1913

Their living conditions soon changed as ever larger parts of their island were expanded into a sea ​​fortress . Kaiser Wilhelm II had Heligoland, which is located near the mouth of the then newly established, economically and strategically important Kaiser Wilhelm Canal (today: Kiel Canal), immediately expanded into a naval base . Kaiser Wilhelm came to Heligoland almost every year; However, he primarily visited his navy, extremely rarely the Heligoland or the bathing company. He was never in the new conversation house from 1891. The navy became an attraction for bathers. Not only before the naval maneuver of the imperial maneuver of 1904 was a naval parade off the island.

The number of guests fell, the wealthier guests stopped coming; therefore Helgoland became a destination for many club outings. The clubs celebrated the German Navy. In many publications it was argued that the Heligoland would disrupt the operation of the fortress. In addition, they were considered "half British" and thus as potential traitors. The question of how much longer they could stay on the island was in the air.

The cultural interest changed. In the German Empire, Heligoland paintings primarily showed the navy. There were few exceptions: in 1901 and 1902 the painter Elisabeth Reuter from Lübeck exhibited in her own studio on the island. In the wake of the Austrian enthusiasm for Helgoland, Anton Bruckner composed his cantata Helgoland for male choir and orchestra in 1893 based on a text by August Silberstein ; this work about a failed Roman invasion was reminiscent of the naval battle near Heligoland in 1864 . In addition, fantasies of an old holy island of Helgoland developed in the ethnic environment, for example at Gorch Fock .

The southern port was not completed until the First World War.

In 1900, the family pool was introduced on Heligoland as the first German seaside resort. Men and women could now bathe together, but no longer naked, as was the case until the end of the English era.

From 1908 the south port was built for the navy. Tourism suffered significantly from the construction work, the Oberland was already used for military purposes, there were tunnels and underground facilities.

With the imperial declaration of war on July 31, 1914, the fortress commander received absolute powers on Heligoland. In his attack on the same day, he ordered the expulsion of all guests and pointed out his right to arrests, house searches and armed violence. Smaller gatherings were also banned. The next day on August 1, the Heligoland was ordered to leave the island within twelve hours. On arrival in Hamburg, contrary to promises made by the military, no accommodation was organized; after a night on the steamers and jetties, they were initially housed in the emigration halls. Contrary to the general assumption that the war would only last a few weeks, the Heligoland were only able to return in 1918.

In the waters of Heligoland, the first sea battle took place near Helgoland in 1914 and the second sea battle near Heligoland in 1917 . Both times there was no battle for Heligoland or the use of the fortress cannons; the crew was bored mainly for four years.

Weimar Republic

During the revolution of 1918, a soldiers' council first took power on Heligoland. Then the Heligoland came back with their community council in autumn. Their apartments were neglected after being used by the soldiers.

Kaiserstraße 1932. On the left the former Gasthaus Mohr, then the clothing store Kuchlenz. Opposite Franz Schensky owned a photo
shop , in the front right the parish hall. The swastika flag is probably hanging on the intervening photo shop of Alfred Zerner, who was also attacked by the National Socialists.
View from the lighthouse to the Oberland around 1929/30
Helgoland, stairs to the Oberland, ca.1932

The Heligoland tried to become English again very quickly. British troops were on the island anyway to control the disarmament work. An important argument in favor of leaving Germany was the income tax , which was now to be collected by the German government. In addition, the Heligoland saw themselves as the majority of the disarmament workers. Ultimately, the attempt failed because of the reluctance of the British to take Heligoland back. There were attempts to contact the Danes, but they were also unsuccessful. The Reich government saw these attempts at separation with concern and amended the constitution according to Helgoland's wishes. In addition, Helgoland became its own district with a district administrator on the island. In 1925 the 100th anniversary of the founding of the seaside resort was celebrated. The political disputes seemed to have subsided. The Helgoländer Heimatbund was founded with its own monthly journal, which is an important source for history today. In 1925 Helgoland had 2576 inhabitants, of which 2380 were Protestants, 148 Catholics, 4 "other Christians" and 4  Jews .

The visitors now came often because of the cheap duty-free shopping. The number of day visitors had already increased massively in the German Empire; The poor economic conditions made shopping attractive only after the First World War and further deteriorated the island's image. A lido was built in the old naval port.

In June 1925, the physicist Werner Heisenberg completed the fundamental work on his mathematical description of quantum mechanics on Heligoland . He had retired to the island because of his hay fever . The Heligoland Club was founded in 1925 to improve the island's reputation. District Administrator Gustav Etzel used this club for his fight against the Helgoland Heimatbund; Etzel saw his commitment to Helgoland privileges (income tax exemption) as separatism. Heligoland's infidelity to the Reich was discussed again throughout the Reich in 1928, as in the first post-war years.

Heligoland tourists 1926

The early Heligoland National Socialists supported the Heimatbund. Its members did not oppose this, but they distinguished themselves from them by referring to their Jewish members, who also defended the Heimatbund against accusations of anti-Semitism. The NSDAP did not run in the local elections. The list of the Heimatbund with August Kuchlenz and a list of the not so radical Franz Schensky , which relied more on cooperation with the Reich, dominated. Both strong men had campaigned for a return to Great Britain immediately after the war. Until 1933, only Heligolandians with a dubious reputation were active in the NSDAP.

Until 1933 August Kuchlenz and the Heimatbund remained the strongest group. In the economic crisis, soup kitchens and warming rooms were necessary for many Heligoland countries to survive.

National Socialism and World War II

In the Reichstag election on March 5, 1933 , the NSDAP received 50.6% of the vote on Heligoland. In the election of the municipal council in 1933, she won three of the nine seats on the municipal council. But some representatives of the Heligoland lists converted to the NSDAP. It was the goal of new activists that the NSDAP local group should reposition itself. The leadership of the old Heligoland NSDAP, which had supported Helgoland parties, was disempowered. Now scientists from the biological institute and Helgoland school teachers took over power on the island. At the head was Karl Meunier , an ambitious young scientist who u. a. was supported by Helmuth Hertling (1891–1942). On November 26, 1933, the former strong man of the NSDAP, Georg Friedrichs (1887–1945), was arrested by Karl Meunier and taken to the concentration camp with other local politicians, including August Kuchlenz .

The new management team was absolutely loyal to the Reich and also saw the Heligoland as Germans, which was new and accepted the Heligoland with their previously unclear national identity into the National Socialist " Volksgemeinschaft ". The young people learned from the Hitler Youth that they were Germans.

The central person on the island between 1933 and 1945 was Karl Meunier (1902–1986) from the Biological Institute. As head of office he was the mayor's superior, and as local group leader he had power in the party. He was downright hated on the island; the old Heligoland National Socialists initiated party trials against him, but in vain. Many Heligoland members in the NSDAP resisted his brutal, authoritarian style. There is still a rich inventory of trial files from the party court that go back to the war years. The climax was a large homosexual trial in which senior members of the local party were also indicted. One of the most prominent victims was Alfred Wulff (* 1888), who worked as a professor at the Biological Institute and was highly valued as a brilliant biologist and treasurer of the NSDAP local group, but had to leave the institute and party because of his homosexuality. He later fought for re-entry into the NSDAP and emphasized his National Socialist sentiments.

Due to the discussions about the old Heligoland rights (besides the duty-free also the tax-exemption) and the efforts of the islanders after the lost First World War to become British or Danish, the Heligoland were seen as potential treasoners. Even before 1933, the National Socialists emphasized that the Heligoland were Germans and thus ensured a clear identity. This question has not been discussed since the Nazi era.

Many of the island's military installations were only dismantled after the First World War, but not destroyed. As part of the armament of the Wehrmacht operated by the Nazi regime , they were expanded into a large naval base from 1935 under the code name Project Hummerschere . As early as 1933, the NS organization Kraft durch Freude offered trips to Heligoland. This led to a slump in the number of permanent guests.

Funnel of a 5-ton bomb on the Oberland

At the beginning of the Second World War , the Heligoland were not deported. On December 3, 1939, the first Allied bombing raid took place ; it was an unsuccessful attack by 24 Wellington bombers of the RAF squadrons 38, 115 and 149 against German warships lying near Heligoland.

The island was initially little affected by bombing during the Second World War - which shows the minor military importance that the British in particular still attached to it. With the development of the Air Force , islands had largely lost their strategic importance. The lobster claw project was canceled in 1941.

The airfield built on the dune was too small and vulnerable for any serious war use. The Helgoland fighter squadron, which was temporarily deployed to ward off Allied bombing, was equipped with a rare version of the Messerschmitt Bf 109 fighter plane , originally designed for use by aircraft carriers . Completed and ready the were submarine pen Nordsee III in South Haven (from January 1942 but only until March 1942 submarines used), Marine artillery - Batteries (largest caliber 30.5 cm), an air-raid shelter system with extensive bunker tunnel and the airfield with the Helgoland air force fighter squadron (April – October 1943). The final total length of the tunnels was estimated to be over 13 km. Forced laborers , including from the Soviet Union , were also used in the construction of the military facilities . At the beginning of 1945 around 3,000 soldiers are said to have been stationed on Heligoland.

Resistance at the end of the war - attempt to surrender the island peacefully

Stumbling stone on Heligoland for Erich Paul Jansen Friedrichs, Lungwai at the corner of Friesenstrasse, Unterland
Stolperstein on Heligoland for Martin Otto Wachtel, on the cliff edge path near the Berlin Bear, Oberland
Stumbling stone on Heligoland for Kurt Arthur Pester, Lung Wai, corner of Aquariumstrasse, Unterland
Stumbling block on Heligoland for Karl Fnouka, Lung Wai at the corner of Bremerstraße, in front of the elevator, Unterland
Stolperstein on Heligoland for Georg Eduard Braun, Kirchstrasse, corner Lummenstrasse (at the cemetery), Oberland

Shortly before the end of the war in 1945, when the British were already in front of Bremen , the master roofer Georg E. Braun, who came from southern Germany, and Erich P. J. Friedrichs (1890–1945) from Helgoland, succeeded in forming a resistance group on the island controlled by the military . It was clear to them that the Second World War was no longer to be won; so they wanted to try to save Heligoland from complete destruction by the Allies. At Georg Braun's in the Oberland mainly officers and soldiers from the nearby Falm and Jacobsen batteries met . The meeting point in the lowlands was Erich Friedrichs' restaurant Das Friesenhaus . There were mainly people from the Heligoland and civilians from the mainland. They never met in larger groups, but always came by as if by chance to exchange information. While the military group around Georg Braun was working out the plans for handing over the island to the Allies without a fight, Friedrichs, the radio officer at the signal station not far from Georg Braun's house, and some of his colleagues were in radio contact with the British.

However, shortly before the plans were carried out, the action was betrayed by two members of the group. About 20 men were arrested on Heligoland in the early morning of April 18, and 14 of them were transported to Cuxhaven. Following a fast-track trial, five resisters were executed three days later, on the evening of April 21, 1945, at the Cuxhaven- Sahlenburg shooting range . The verdicts for conspiracy and incitement to mutiny were signed by Rolf Johannesson . In honor of the condemned, the Helgoland Museum had stumbling blocks laid on the streets of Heligoland on April 17, 2010 . Their names are: Erich P. J. Friedrichs, Georg E. Braun, Karl Fnouka, Kurt A. Pester , Martin O. Wachtel.

A sixth stumbling block is the memory of the hairdresser Heinrich Prüß, who publicly expressed his rejection of National Socialism and was arrested in 1944 and executed in the Brandenburg prison.

End of World War II and the post-war period

In two waves of attacks on April 18 and 19, 1945, 1,000 aircraft of the British Royal Air Force dropped around 7,000 bombs. The majority of the residents survived in the air raid shelters . 285 people were killed, including twelve civilians. The other victims were soldiers, flak and naval helpers . After that, the island was hardly habitable. The Germans were still evacuating the civilian population . The approximately 2500 residents were housed in around 150 different locations in Schleswig-Holstein.

At the end of the war, Germany was gradually occupied by the Allies. On May 4th, Hans-Georg von Friedeburg signed the surrender of all German troops in northwest Germany, the Netherlands and Denmark near Lüneburg on behalf of the last Reich President Karl Dönitz , who had previously left the last Reich government in Flensburg - Mürwik . The document of surrender mentioned that the surrender also applied to Heligoland as part of northwest Germany. On May 11, 1945, the surrender was carried out on Heligoland; British soldiers occupied the island.

At the end of the war, some Heligoland people had found a place to stay on the island of Sylt , from where they could continue fishing in their usual waters. In Cuxhaven a group formed around August Kuchlenz, the old local politician. Similar to after the First World War, there were again attempts to return to Great Britain. The Heligoland mother tongue became more important for the identity of the Heligoland.

On April 18, 1947, the British destroyed the island's military bunkers with the largest non-nuclear demolition in history until 1985.

They staged this for the German public; there was a separate brochure. Ammunition had been brought to the island for the demolition. In 1949 shells with up to ten tons of tabun were sunk in the "Helgoländer Loch", about 2.5  nautical miles (approx. 4.6 km) south of Helgoland , around 90 tons of poison gas grenades (approx. 6000 individual grenades).

The exiled Helgoland started further political initiatives to repopulate the island: In March 1948 the United Nations was called. There were appeals to the British House of Commons , the newly formed federal government and even to the Pope . The old British islanders around August Kuchlenz had now lost their influence; it was spoken by the younger ones who had learned under National Socialism that they were Germans. From this time onwards, Henry Peter Rickmers was an important figure . Helgoland remained a restricted military area and a bomb dropping area for the British Air Force.

20 Pf special stamp of the Deutsche Bundespost (1952) on the occasion of the return of Heligoland

On December 20, 1950, the two Heidelberg students René Leudesdorff and Georg von Hatzfeld occupied the island and hoisted the German flag , the flag of the European movement and the flag of Heligoland in different variations for the press . They were soon joined by the publicist Hubertus zu Löwenstein, who was teaching history in Heidelberg at the time. The question of who played which role is presented differently to this day.

The efforts of the Heligoland and the occupation by the three Germans triggered a broad movement to re-release Heligoland; there was even broad support from the GDR. After the German Bundestag unanimously called for the island to be released in January 1951, the British returned Heligoland to the Federal Republic of Germany on March 1, 1952. The population was given permission to return to their island. To this day, March 1st is a public holiday on Heligoland.

The displaced welcomed the re-opening of the island; once again Heligoland became a German symbol. In place of pride in the German fortress came the joy of the first return of an area occupied by the Allies. Their hopes that the eastern territories would also become German again were strengthened.


A reconstruction commission was set up in 1952. Georg Wellhausen , who had made a name for himself in the reconstruction of Hamburg, was entrusted with the management of the commission and drawing up a development plan, and a competition was held. He developed the urban planning concept, which deliberately refrained from reconstructing the old buildings, but took into account the grown structures with their orientation according to the wind load. The asymmetrical gable profiles and colored wooden cladding, for example in the lobster booths, are typical . Johannes Ufer developed a color spectrum of 14 colors for the houses on Heligoland, choosing more delicate tones for the Oberland and strong tones for the Unterland. The Commission was one Konstanty Gutschow as judges. Other members were Godber Nissen and Otto Bartning , who took over the construction management. With the reconstruction, tourism and spa business developed again into important branches of the economy. In 1962, Helgoland was officially recognized as a North Sea spa. In 1967 the reconstruction was considered complete.

Crisis and new ways

The number of guests increased until the early 1970s. Then the island was considered a cheap place to shop; the derogatory term "Fuselfelsen" arose. The image went bad and the number of visitors decreased. Even on the mainland, people were no longer proud of the reconstruction. Since then, attempts have been made to build a better image through new concepts. Of the rich history, often only the demolition is perceived. The remains of the old bunkers are popular with visitors - as they did after the First World War. From 1983 bunker tours were included in the island brochures as a regular offer. The guests appreciate the nature experiences, since 1998 the seals on the dune have been advertised.

From April 2008, plans by the Hamburg-based construction company Arne Weber were discussed, which envisaged large-scale reclamation of new land on Heligoland. Arne Weber owns the largest hotel on the island; he had already advertised Heligoland with spectacular ideas. The northeast area was to be connected to the western edge of the dune. Even after the project was rejected by a steering group chaired by the Pinneberger District Administrator in 2010, Mayor Jörg Singer continued to pursue the project until a majority of 54.74% of Heligoland citizens voted against it in 2011 .

Since 2015 the community has had a lot of income from the wind turbines. Bombs are often found due to the increased construction activities. On October 19, 2017, the entire Oberland was evacuated after a British aerial bomb was found and defused.

The social structure of the island is changing. Many positions in tourism have been permanently occupied by Poles , Romanians and Bulgarians; in the 2018 local election campaign there was even advertising in Polish. The approx. 100 new jobs in wind energy are usually filled every 14 days; The center of life of the employees remains on the mainland, similar to the area of ​​scientific research on the island. The originally very close island community is also being dissolved into more anonymous forms of coexistence by the new social media with their mainland connection.

On September 21, 2020, 68 apartments were inaugurated, which the municipality had built near the lighthouse to meet the shortage of apartments for locals.

coat of arms

Flag of Heligoland
Former flag of Heligoland

Blazon : "Divided twice by green, red and silver".

Helgoland has the oldest coat of arms in the Pinneberg district . In 1696, the island was given a shipping flag by Duke Friedrich IV, along with the other seafaring cities and landscapes of the Duchy of Schleswig-Holstein-Gottorf . The current coat of arms developed from this in the late 19th century. The tinging is derived from the famous Helgoland saying:

“The land is green, Kant is red, sand is witt. Dat sünd de Farven vun't hillige land. "
"The country is green, the Kant is red (more rarely: the wall), the sand is white: these are the colors of Heligoland."

According to Stadler , the crown was first reliably documented in 1913.

At the time of British possession, the so-called Union Jack was also found on the flag of Heligoland in the Gösch .


From February 18, 1891 to September 30, 1922, the municipality of Helgoland belonged to the Süderdithmarschen district in the province of Schleswig-Holstein . On October 1, 1922, it became the only municipality in the new Helgoland district . On October 1, 1932, this circle was dissolved. Helgoland came to the district of Pinneberg as a rural municipality that was free of office . To this day it is represented by a directly elected member of the Pinneberg district assembly. The reason for the assignment to the district of Pinneberg was that Pinneberg had the best public transport connection to Heligoland of all Schleswig-Holstein district towns due to its proximity to Hamburg.

Allocation of seats in the council assembly (since 2019)
A total of 13 seats

Result of the local elections on May 6, 2018

Political party percent Seats
CDU 39.03% 5
SPD 33.23% 4th
SSW 27.74% 4th

After the change of three members of the CDU to SSW 2019, the SSW has the majority of the municipal council with 7 of the 13 seats.

In the mayoral election on September 11, 2016, Jörg Singer prevailed as in 2010, he received 65.4% of the votes cast.


The only general education school on the island is the James Krüss School, a community school with an integrated elementary school .

Town twinning


St. Nicolai Church
Population by religion, 2018
Evangelical Lutheran
Roman Catholic
other religion / none

Helgoland was visited by Christian missionaries earlier than the Schleswig-Holstein mainland. A first written report comes from Alkuin about an island visit of the Anglo-Saxon missionary Willibrord around 800. 100 years after the visit he wrote down his life in order to praise him as a saint. It is not without controversy that the island described is also Heligoland. This report also briefly discusses the religion of the islanders and mentions a god Fosite, who is not mentioned anywhere else. A source is also described from which one can only draw silently. Alkuin probably took this picture from ancient literature. Alkuin also literally reproduces Willibrord's speech, which is just as little to be read as a historical factual report. What religion was widespread on Heligoland at that time can only be guessed at. Around 1900 the Heligoland god Fosite was used on the island as a personification of the island, similar to Germania for Germany or Hammonia for Hamburg (see section Sport ) .

Willibrord was unsuccessful. Around 791 the first chapel was supposedly built by the Münster bishop Liudger . He is said to have destroyed all the Fosite shrines. After the Reformation there were only Evangelical Lutheran residents on the island until the end of the 19th century.

The Evangelical Lutheran parish consists of around 800 people and thus the majority of the island's population. On November 29, 1959, the Protestant St. Nicolai Church , which is named after the patron saint of seafarers and merchants, Nikolaus von Myra , was inaugurated.

The Roman Catholic parish on Heligoland has around 200 parishioners. For the Catholic members of the navy, a chapel was built in the Oberland in the Oberland during the First World War, which later also functioned as a hostel. No Catholic church was planned for the reconstruction after 1952. Since the church consecration on June 27, 1971, Heligoland has had a Catholic church with the St. Michaels Church. It was named after the Archangel Michael , the patron saint of soldiers and Germany, and belonged to the Diocese of Osnabrück until 1995 , and since then to the newly founded Archdiocese of Hamburg .


The traditional language of Helgoland is the Helgoland Frisian called Halunder Spreek . This island Frisian dialect of the North Frisian language is also authorized for official use on the island . However, only a few of the Heligoland people still master the Halunder.

A text sample on Halunder: “Med'n October for de iáárs Foortschichen weer noa Hambörri, en de Damper fan Tres küm weer taumoal uun'e work.” Translated into high German: “In mid-October the first ships ('vehicles') followed again Hamburg, and the steamer from Cuxhaven came back twice a week. "

The most common language is currently standard German . In addition, some older Heligoland people also speak Low German , which, although never a vernacular on Heligoland, has long been the lingua franca for contact with the mainland. In 2005 the municipality of Helgoland was awarded the “Language-friendly municipality” award by the Sprachland Nordfriesland ” campaign.


  • Lange Anna : Geological and natural sights include the Lange Anna, a 47 m high, free-standing rock, and the Lummenfelsen, populated by thousands of sea birds. They can be seen well from a circular path that leads along the cliffs on the uplands.
The lowlands with the colorful lobster stalls
  • Lobster booths : The brightly painted, wooden lobster booths at the harbor are former fishermen's workshops. Today's types of use are mostly related to tourism.
  • Museum Helgoland with James Krüss Museum: On the museum courtyard of the Museum Helgoland there is a small James Krüss Museum in two replica lobster booths, in which television recordings, CDs, photographs, manuscripts and correspondence, including a letter from Astrid Lindgren to James Krüss to be shown.
  • The Helgoland Aquarium at the northeast port is operated by the Helgoland Biological Institute as a research, teaching and show aquarium . At the beginning of 2015 the aquarium had to be closed until further notice due to financial and technical problems with maintenance. The development association Bluehouse Helgoland aims to reopen the aquarium with a new usage concept.
  • Directional radio tower Helgoland : A transmission tower of a very unusual design is located on the Oberland. The Helgoland radio tower is designed as a steel framework construction with a triangular cross-section, which is additionally secured with pardunas .
  • The shining Heligoland lighthouse and the directional radio tower at night
    Lighthouse : stands in the immediate vicinity of the radio
    tower . The building, which was designed as a flak tower or flak control station during World War II , was put into operation as a lighthouse in 1952. It has the brightest German fire with a range of 28 nautical miles (52 kilometers), so that the light beam can be seen on clear nights as far as the East Frisian Islands . During the Cold War, a nuclear bunker was built into the lower two floors of the lighthouse ; the false windows on these floors were only installed for aesthetic reasons.
  • Bunker: Around 400 meters of the old, underground, several kilometers long bunkers and shelters can be viewed on guided tours. The exact number and length of the underground passages on the island are still unknown.
  • St. Nicolai Church : The interior of the church on the Oberland is partly from the old island church, which was destroyed by a bombing on April 18, 1945.

Regular events

  • North Sea Week (high seas regatta): Germany's only high seas regatta series takes place every year on the Whitsun weekend.
  • Störtebeker Opti Cup: Regatta for optimists , has been taking place since 2003 at the end of July / beginning of August.
  • Marathon : The Helgoland Marathon has been held annually since 1998 with a few hundred participants in May, usually on the Saturday of the weekend on which the port birthday party is celebrated in Hamburg .
  • Beach volleyball tournament: takes place every summer.
  • Flens BeachSoccer Cup: Every year at the end of July / beginning of August there is a large beach soccer tournament on the south beach of the dune .
  • Island Festival: Also known as the “Street Festival” or the “Beach Service Day”, it takes place every year on a Saturday around July 12th.
  • Rowing regatta: Every year in July, the Allgemeine Fetenveranstaltungsgesellschaft Helgoland organizes a rowing festival with costumes and live music with many rowing teams from the island and the mainland.
  • Börtebootregatta: On the anniversary of the cession of Heligoland by Great Britain to Germany on August 10th, a Börteboot regatta will take place.
  • Rock'n'Roll Butterfahrt : The festival takes place every year at the end of April / beginning of May on the dune.


On Heligoland there is a soccer field with artificial turf as well as a running track and a diving pit. The football department of VfL Fosite Helgoland is (like all clubs from the Pinneberg district ) a member of the Hamburg Football Association . However, no team is currently taking part in regular match operations. The reason for this is the high cost of the crossing to the mainland. That is why the club only plays friendly matches.

Every year in May, the Helgoland Marathon takes place on a circuit on the island that is run five times. Up to 200 men and women, mostly from Germany, take part.

Economy and Infrastructure

The traditional main occupation of the Heligoland, fishing and pilotage, has hardly played a role since the 19th century. Tourism is also important today, as it has been since the early 19th century, then new and very important wind energy and, thirdly, the public sector with a large research facility. Several craft businesses work for all of them .


Helgoland is a state-approved seaside spa . In 2017, 1602 beds were available in private quarters, guest houses and hotels.

The freedom from customs and sales tax on Heligoland attracts day - trippers to the island for duty-free shopping , especially in the summer months . However, the price advantage is reduced due to the elimination of sales tax and customs duties due to the municipal import tax levied exclusively on Heligoland. Due to the low prices for diesel fuel , Heligoland is also an insider tip for cruises in the German Bight among sport boat captains. Sports pilots also benefit from the price advantage when refueling at Heligoland airport.

Seals on the east beach of the island of Dune

The dune in front of the main island , which can be reached by ferry, is the preferred destination of those holidaymakers who not only stay on Heligoland as day tourists and who withdraw from the daily rush of tourists there. On the dune , bathers share the beach on some days with harbor seals and gray seals , which have largely given up their shyness towards humans.

A seal cub on the Heligoland dune

From the end of the 1960s to the end of the 1970s, up to 800,000 day-trippers came every year - numbers of visitors that were later not reached. At that time Heligoland was given the derogatory nickname “Fuselfelsen” because tourists could buy alcoholic beverages in large quantities there duty-free.

In order to shift the focus away from pure day and shopping tourism to overnight guests, the old Kurhaus was replaced by a new hotel in 1999 and the seawater swimming pool was renovated in 2007, which is now called Mare Frisicum Spa Helgoland . The number of day tourists rose slightly in 2011 for the first time in a long time. From 2007 to 2010 the number of overnight guests increased by around 30%. In 2012 there were around 70,000 overnight guests, the total number of Helgoland day trippers was 316,241. In 2012 the HelgolandCard was introduced, which replaces the previous spa card.

The business with day tourism is in tension with the business with overnight guests.

Wind energy

Buildings for the wind energy companies at the Südhafen, in front of the ship the freight and passenger terminal opened in 2019

Since the high trade tax income from the wind energy companies from 2015, the budget of the municipality of Helgoland has been more than balanced. The approx. 100 workplaces are mostly occupied every 14 days. There are newly built dormitories for the workers. The largest hotel on the island is rented to wind energy companies as a conference venue.

On the southern port area developed by Hafenprojektgesellschaft Helgoland mbH (HGH) in 2013 , the companies E.ON , RWE and WindMW , which are involved in the construction and operation of several offshore wind farms in the German Bight, built an operating base for maintenance and service. Before that, the area had to be cleared of the numerous munitions still in existence from the Second World War and the post-war period. The offshore wind farms Meerwind Süd and Meerwind Ost from WindMW were completed in 2014 around 23 km north of Helgoland. RWE-Innogy's Nordsee Ost wind farm was opened in May 2015. The offshore wind farm Amrumbank West E.ON went into operation in October, 2015.

Public service

A major employer in the 20th century was the Bundeswehr or its predecessor organizations. The last barracks for up to 60 soldiers were taken over by the Biological Institute in 2006. The originally high number of posts at the post office, weather service, air traffic control, police, customs, waterways and shipping authorities have been significantly reduced as a result of the restructuring, comparable to those on the mainland. A hospital has been preserved to this day, which has been a private specialist clinic for Parkinson's patients since 1985, but also continues to provide basic care for the Heligoland and guests.

The electricity fed into the Heligoland network was produced exclusively on site until 2009: In the northeastern part of the lowlands there is a power plant with two generators that are operated by diesel engines . The waste heat and the heat from two heating oil-operated boilers are used to supply a large part of the Heligoland buildings with district heating . The exhaust gases from the central power generation are subjected to a flue gas cleaning . In 2009 the Helgoland cable , a nearly 53 km long 30 kV submarine cable from St. Peter-Ording to Helgoland, was laid for 20 million euros . Since the commissioning on November 30, 2009, Helgoland has been the last German municipality to be connected to the European network .

Drinking water is obtained on Heligoland itself. Next to the power plant there is a seawater desalination plant, with which Heligoland's drinking water is obtained through reverse osmosis . The water is about four times as expensive as on the mainland.

The German Navy operates a SAR helicopter base on Heligoland, among other things . There is a weather station of the German Weather Service at the southern port . The Federal Office for Radiation Protection installed two ODL probes on Heligoland to monitor environmental radioactivity . One is on the Oberland, the other by the harbor; they are used for radioactive early warning.

Biological Institute Helgoland

The Helgoland Biological Institute (BAH), which has existed since 1892, researches the basics of marine life with a focus on the North Sea and the Wadden Sea . Since 1998 it has been part of the Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research (AWI) based in Bremerhaven . In 2017, 65 people worked here, mostly on fixed-term contracts. Another research facility is the Helgoland ornithological station, which emerged from the BAH . As a result of the destruction on Helgoland, it took its headquarters in Wilhelmshaven in 1947 and is now called the Institute for Bird Research "Vogelwarte Helgoland". The island station Helgoland is now a branch of this institute.

Rescue station of the DGzRS

DGzRS logo

Since 1892 there has been a rescue station of the German Society for Rescue of Shipwrecked People (DGzRS) on Heligoland . Due to its exposed location and its proximity to the large shipping lanes in the German Bight, the station is one of the most important in society. A rescue cruiser has been stationed here since 1955 and has a permanent berth in the southern harbor .


The journey to Helgoland can be made by watercraft or aircraft .


Three seaside resorts lie in the roadstead , the landing
bridge on the left and the beginning of the southern harbor on the right

During the tourist season, seaside resorts operate daily from various ports on the German mainland to Heligoland. In December 2015, the new Helgoland with LNG propulsion started traffic from Cuxhaven and Hamburg. There is no longer any traffic to the East Frisian North Sea islands. The most important ports for Heligoland traffic are Büsum (shipping company Rahder and shipping company Cassen Eils ), Cuxhaven , Bremerhaven and Hooksiel (all shipping company Cassen Eils) and Hamburg , via Wedel and Cuxhaven (FRS Förde shipping company Seetouristik ). The fast catamaran ferry Halunder Jet also ran until October 2017 ; a successor ship started operating in 2018.

In the winter season from October to March, when only a few tourists visit the island, only a single sea bathing ship (from Cuxhaven) heads for the southern harbor. All other seaside resorts ceased operations during this time. It would be too dangerous to disembark at this time of year, depending on the weather.

Since 2009, all ships have had to meet the strict EU regulations, which is why some of the seafaring ships used required extensive modifications.

The travel times of the seaside resorts to and from Heligoland from the nearest port in Cuxhaven are around 130 minutes; the Halunder Jet took 75 minutes.

Helgoland is usually called at twice a week by the cargo ship Helgoland , which brings goods of all kinds. Other ships deliver material for the wind farm builder if required.

The disembarkation

A tourist attraction that is unique in Germany is the disembarkation of the passengers of the seaside resort ships lying in the roadstead to the Heligoland landing stage . The disembarkation is carried out with open, sturdy börteboots (local name Rudder ). The Börteboot has room for 40–50 passengers during the short journey from the seaside resort ship to the island. The boat shape of the Börteboote dates back to the time when Heligoland lived from fishing and later from the pilot business in the German Bight and the estuaries of the Weser and Elbe rivers. Since the island did not have its own port until the construction of a naval port shortly before the First World War , the boats landed on the south beach of the main island in winter and summer. During the construction of the resort Helgoland in 1826 and the establishment of an insurance Börtebootbetreiber mutual the disembarkation was introduced in the roads in front of the beach.

The Heligoland boat Rasmus on a trip around the Lange Anna
Disembarking the passengers from the "Funny Girl"

Since the opening of today's southern port, there are various reasons against its use for seaside resort shipping in summer; Initially it was exclusively for military use that forbade the entry of sea service ships, then the practicability spoke in favor of maintaining the disembarkation: There is not enough space in the port to handle up to five sea service ships a day. At the jetty designed to handle the numerous day tourists, there is not the necessary water depth for every ship. In addition, disembarking is a trademark of the island and a source of income for its residents: the fare to Heligoland includes a "Börte surcharge". An exception in summer are the catamaran ferries from Hamburg, Wedel and Cuxhaven and, since May 2016, the seaside resort ship MS  Helgoland , which regularly head for the southern port. In winter, however, mooring in the southern harbor is permitted.


On the dune is the small Helgoland-Düne airfield , from which the German mainland can be reached in around 20 to 30 minutes. Regular flight connections to and from Heligoland are currently offered from the airports Heide / Büsum and Cuxhaven / Nordholz . In addition, there were or are charter and seasonal services.


Former electric vehicle for the police on Heligoland

On the island of Helgoland, according to § 50 of the StVO special regulation for the island of Helgoland, traffic with motor vehicles and cycling are prohibited. Anyone who intentionally or negligently drives a motor vehicle or rides a bicycle on the island of Helgoland in contravention of Section 50, acts in accordance with Section 49 Paragraph 4 No. 7 in accordance with Section 24 of the Road Traffic Act (StVG), which in accordance with Section 2 of the Road Traffic Act can result in a fine of up to can be fined to 2000 euros. Section 35 Special Rights Paragraphs 1 to 1a of the StVO exempt the Federal Armed Forces , Federal Police , Fire Brigade , Disaster Control , Police , Customs Service and foreign officials who are entitled to pursue or observe in Germany on the basis of international agreements from the prohibition, insofar as this is urgently required to fulfill sovereign tasks ; Paragraphs 5 to 5a liberate the troops of the non-German states party to the North Atlantic Pact in the event of urgent military requirements, as well as rescue service vehicles when the greatest urgency is required to save human life or to avert serious damage to health. Paragraph 6 entitles vehicles that are used for the construction , maintenance or cleaning of streets and systems in the street space or for garbage collection and are marked by white-red-white warning devices to drive on all streets and parts of the street and on every side of the street in every direction at all times and to hold, insofar as their use requires it; Paragraph 7 entitles the Federal Network Agency for Electricity, Gas, Telecommunications, Post and Railway measuring vehicles to drive and stop on all roads and parts of roads at all times, insofar as their sovereign use requires this.

Where pedestrian traffic is allowed, must according to § 24 with wheelchairs or with other than sliding and push rim wheelchairs are moved, but only at walking speed (push and push rim wheelchairs are not vehicles for purposes of traffic; for the marketing of these means of transport are subject to the rules pedestrian traffic accordingly (these do not stipulate walking speed). For any other traffic with motor vehicles and any other cycling on the island of Helgoland, an exception to the provisions of § 50 StVO according to § 46 paragraph 2 sentence 1 StVO must be approved, for which according to § 7 of the state ordinance on the competent authorities and bodies under road traffic law (Road Traffic Law Competence Ordinance - StrVRZustVO) of November 8, 2004, the District Administrator of the Pinneberg district is responsible as the district regulatory authority when it comes to motor vehicles, and the mayor of the municipality of Helgoland is responsible as the local regulatory authority when it comes to bicycles. The reason for the cycling ban is that otherwise traffic signs would have to be set up, which would negatively affect the appearance of the town.

The Heligoland police have had their own motor vehicle since January 2007, and an e-Golf since 2014. In addition, some construction vehicles and a taxi to the airport with a combustion engine are in use. The movement of people and goods , as far as it is not possible on foot, is handled with electric vehicles . The abbreviation “AG”, which is often seen on their license plate, stands for “exceptional approval”.

Island tours are possible with the electrically powered Börte train on the Oberland and Unterland.

According to the guidelines published on the notice on May 29, 2012 for the granting of exemption permits § 50 StVO for bicycles of the mayor of the municipality of Helgoland, exemption permits for bicycles can be issued by the mayor of the municipality of Helgoland, among other things for authorities with security tasks , certain departments , if it To fulfill the legal tasks is necessary, organizations with security tasks , certain commercial enterprises as well as residents over 70 years. Children and young people up to 14 years of age are allowed to cycle all day from October 1st to March 31st of the following year, and from April 1st to September 30th of each year from 5:00 p.m. “Within the center of the village (both Oberland and Unterland), the bicycle can be pushed when there is a large number of pedestrians. The speed limit of a maximum of 10 km / h also applies to bicycles.

Kick scooters on Helgoland - cycling is prohibited on the island of Helgoland unless there is an exemption from the provisions of the StVO (special rights) or an exception to the provision of the StVO containing the ban on cycling has been approved by the Mayor of the municipality of Helgoland

As a bicycle replacement (muscle-powered) scooters are allowed on Heligoland , whereas electric scooters are prohibited.

There are two pedestrian lights ; they stand on the dune and warn of aircraft landing .

The house numbers on Heligoland are a specialty . So there is only one house number, regardless of the street. The count begins in the Unterland with house no. 1 (customs office on the freight pier) and ends at 299 in Husumer Straße. The houses in the Oberland begin with 301 (Fernsicht residential complex) and end at 762 (residential and holiday homes gateway to the sea ). Buildings with house numbers over 1000 belong to the port (starting with the baggage hall). There are a total of 108 streets, paths and alleys on Heligoland.

Railroad and elevator

The naval port construction office Helgoland ran a during the two world wars for the construction and maintenance of naval bases on Helgoland meterspurige heeresfeldbahn . Unterland and Oberland have been connected to one another by an elevator since 1885.

post Office

The history of the post is documented in the Museum Helgoland

Under Danish administration until 1807 there was no orderly postal system on Heligoland. The British conquered the island in 1807. During the continental blockade , it served as a trading center. During this time, British ships took care of the mail. After the blockage was lifted, the mail volume fell again and the city ​​post office in Hamburg carried the few letters. Every skipper who came to Helgoland from Cuxhaven or sailed there was obliged to take the post with him. Only when Helgoland came into fashion as a seaside resort did regular postal services resume. The mail carriers received a grant from the British treasury.

The United Kingdom took over the post office on July 1, 1866 and issued its own postage stamps from March 1867 onwards , and continued in Hamburg currency until 1875 (1 mark = 16 schillings). From 1875 the Heligoland stamps with English and German currency overprints appeared. A total of twenty different Helgoland brands have appeared, which specialists differentiate into a large number of varieties. Post sovereignty ended with the transition to the German Empire in August 1890.

There was a separate post office in the Unterland until 2007/08; Since then, there has been a small branch within a grocery store and then in a stationery store on Siemens' terrace. There has been a post office counter in the customs building since 2019. The mailboxes have remained elsewhere.


In the movement of goods between Heligoland and the rest of Germany, Heligoland is treated like a third country , just like the Büsingen exclave on the Upper Rhine . So far, this means that for shipments to the rest of Germany with a goods value of up to € 22 per shipment, no VAT or customs are charged. However, this exemption limit will be abolished at the end of 2020 (not only for shipments from Heligoland) in order to curb VAT fraud.


Sons and daughters of the island

  • Rickmer Clasen Rickmers (1807–1886), shipyard owner, shipping company founder and rice merchant
  • William Henry Balmain (1817–1880), British chemist and entrepreneur (phosphors, Balmain phosphors ), taught in Liverpool
  • Franz Schensky (1871–1957), photographer and political spokesman for the General Helgoland List
  • Robert Knud Friedrich Pilger (1876–1953), botanist
  • Erich Hornsmann (1909–1999), lawyer, non-fiction author and environmental activist
  • Henry Peter Rickmers (1919–2013), First Mayor of Heligoland after the war, honorary citizen
  • James Krüss (1926–1997), poet, writer and children's book author; the James Krüss Museum was inaugurated in early 2007
  • Detlef Bückmann (* 1927), zoologist and university professor, most recently at Ulm University
  • Reimer Boy Eilers (* 1948 in Wedel , in a Heligoland family, spent his later childhood on Helgoland), writer and publicist
Memorial stone for Werner Heisenberg

Personalities who have worked on the island


  • The satirical newspaper Helgoländer Vorbote has nothing to do with the island; it reports only marginally in the local section about Heligoland and is created in Berlin and Bochum.
  • The sea water is used on Heligoland for spa treatments .
  • The Bisterk Ding and the Enerbanske are mythical creatures from Helgoland.
  • The Prussian Wall is a surf-repellent wall on the North Sea island of Helgoland.
  • Towards the end of the 19th century, many clubs in Germany named themselves after Heligoland. TSV Helgoland 1897 , a football club in Berlin-Tempelhof, existed until 2016 .
  • The composer Anton Bruckner wrote a secular cantata for male choir and large orchestra Helgoland .
  • The English band Massive Attack named their fifth album Heligoland after the island.
  • A cave in the red sandstone of Heligoland, the bottom of which is formed by petrified ripples, was first described by employees of the Dresden cave research group in 1993.
  • Gunther von Hagens (known from the anatomical exhibitions Body Worlds ) worked as an assistant doctor in the island hospital on Heligoland.
  • The Helgoland hat was a popular ladies hat in the 19th century and at the beginning of the 20th century with a tip hanging in the back.
  • The asteroid (6305) Helgoland , discovered by the Thuringian State Observatory Tautenburg on April 6, 1989, was named after the island.
  • In 1998 tourists from Itzehoe marked the highest point on the island ( 61.3  m ) at the northern tip with an aluminum cross on the summit and named it Pinneberg .
  • A typical dish in Heligoland cuisine today, because fewer lobsters are caught, is Knieper .


The literature on Heligoland is extremely rich. A separate Heligoland bibliography from 1987 lists over 600 monographs:

  • Dirk Meyer, James Packross, Henry Peter Rickmer: Helgoland Bibliography. A guide through the monographic literature on the island of Helgoland. Heligoland 1987.

Several titles appear annually about Heligoland, often small magazines for island tourists or travel guides, usually without their own research results.

An online bibliography, created by Astrid Friederichs, is offered by the Museum Helgoland on its website: Museum Helgoland: Helgolands Lebendige Geschichte / n.

The standard works include:

  • Friedrich of the blankets : Philosophical-historical-geographical investigations on the island Helgoland or Heiligeland and their inhabitants. Hanover 1826.
  • Emil Lindemann: The German Heligoland. Berlin 1913 (271 pages); Similar previous work on the Internet: The North Sea island of Helgoland in topographical, historical, sanitary relation. 1889 (147 pages; at archive.org).
  • Friedrich Oetker : Heligoland. Berlin 1855 ( at archive.org ).
  • Jan Rüger: Heligoland: Britain, Germany, and the Struggle for the North Sea. Oxford 2017 (German under the title Helgoland: Germany, England and a rock in the North Sea. Berlin 2017; review in: Holger Knudsen: The English colonial legislation for Heligoland - "Ordinances of Heligoland"  : At the same time a short review of the book "Helgoland" by Jan Rüger, rg.rg.mpg.de ).
  • HH von Schwerin: Helgoland. Historisk-geografisk undersökning. Lund 1896 (Swedish).
  • Benno Eide Siebs , Erich Wohlenberg: Helgoland and the Helgoland. Kiel 1953.
  • Eckhard Wallmann: Heligoland. A German cultural history . Koehler, Hamburg 2017, ISBN 978-3-7822-1286-1 (672 pages; review by Renate Sternagel in: Heine-Jahrbuch, Vol. 57 (2018), pp. 222-225).

There are also a lot of individual representations:

  • Max Arnhold: The Heligoland pilot system. Husum Druck- und Verlagsgesellschaft, Husum 2012, ISBN 978-3-89876-640-1 .
  • Max Arnhold: Ship accidents off Heligoland. 16th to 20th century. Koehler Verlag, Hamburg 2008, ISBN 978-3-7822-0975-5 .
  • Adolf Brohm: Helgoland in history and legend. Its demonstrable land loss and its conservation. Rauschenplat, Cuxhaven / Helgoland 1907.
  • Jochen Dierschke: The bird world on the island of Helgoland. Missing Link EG, 2011, ISBN 978-3-00-035437-3 .
  • A. Friederichs: We wanted to save Helgoland - On the trail of the resistance group from 1945. Museum Helgoland, 2010, ISBN 978-3-00-030405-7 .
  • Claude Fröhle, Hans-Jürgen Kühn: Offshore fortress Heligoland. A military voyage of discovery 1891–1922 and 1934–1947. Fröhle-Kühn, Herbolzheim 1998, ISBN 3-9805415-1-7 .
  • Heike Grahn-Hoek: Red Flint and Holy Land Helgoland. Wachholtz-Verlag, Neumünster 2009, ISBN 978-3-529-02774-1 .
  • Michael Herms: Change of flag on Heligoland - The fight for a military outpost in the North Sea. Ch.-Links-Verlag, Berlin 2002, ISBN 3-86153-260-3 .
  • Ulrich Höhns: An island under construction - Helgoland 1952–62. Otterndorf 1990.
  • Bruno P. Kremer: Helgoland - an outcrop in the middle of the sea. In: Geoscientific in our time, 3, 1 (1985), doi: 10.2312 / geoswissenschaften.1985.3.1 , pp. 1-7.
  • Martin Krieger: History of Heligoland. Wachholtz, Kiel / Hamburg 2015, ISBN 978-3-529-07601-5 (with own research results on the Danish period).
  • René Leudesdorff : We liberated Heligoland - The peaceful invasion 1950/51. Cobra, Husum 1987, ISBN 3-923146-02-7 .
  • Albert Panten : Heligoland in the Middle Ages. History and scope, testimonials, maps and reflections on Heligoland in the Middle Ages. Evangelical parish, Helgoland 2002.
  • James Packroß, Henry Peter Rickmers: Helgoland is calling! Ludwig Schultheis, Hamburg 1952.
  • Lorenz Petersen: On the history of the constitution and administration on Heligoland. In: Journal of the Society for Schleswig-Holstein History, Volume 67. Karl Wachholtz Verlag, Neumünster 1939 (PURL: resolver.sub.uni-hamburg.de ).
  • Henry Peter Rickmers, Frank Woosnam: Helgoland, an island on the way to Europe. Otterndorf 1992, ISBN 3-924239-19-3 .
  • August Wilhelm Vahlendieck: The Witte Kliff of Helgoland. Nordfriisk Instituut , Bredstedt 1992, ISBN 3-88007-190-X .
  • Eckhard Wallmann: A colony becomes German - Heligoland between the world wars. Nordfriisk Instituut , Bredstedt 2012, ISBN 978-3-88007-376-0 .
  • Erwin Weber: Contributions to the history of the island of Helgoland: a chronicle of the island of Helgoland . (Volumes I to IV), Cuxhaven 1985 ff. 1973–1976 appeared, also in four volumes, a photocopy edition in a different and larger selection of the originally at least 9-volume typescripts from the years 1925–1944 ( NS- oriented).
  • Roland H. Winkelhöfer: Helgoland - excursion to Germany's northernmost caves. In: The cave explorer . Dresden, 25/1993, ISSN  0138-2519 , p. 90.

Web links

Commons : Helgoland  - collection of images, videos and audio files
Wiktionary: Helgoland  - explanations of meanings, word origins, synonyms, translations
Wikisource: Helgoland  - sources and full texts
Wikivoyage: Helgoland  - travel guide

References and comments

  1. North Statistics Office - Population of the municipalities in Schleswig-Holstein 4th quarter 2019 (XLSX file) (update based on the 2011 census) ( help on this ).
  2. Imprint ( Memento from September 20, 2012 in the Internet Archive ), on helgoland.de
  3. Shortest straight line distance from Heligoland to the mainland using the Measure distance function on Google Maps
  4. www.statistik-nord.de
  5. www.helgoland.de (PDF; 3.54 MB).
  6. a b Art. 4 Paragraph 1 4th indent of Regulation (EU) No. 952/2013 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 9 October 2013 laying down the Union Customs Code (new version) in the consolidated version of 15 May 2019 , accessed on August 12, 2019 , possibly in conjunction with Art. 135 Paragraph 4 of Regulation (EU) No. 952/2013, which can be applied through Section 24 of the Customs Administration Act (ZollVG).
  7. ^ Federal Ministry of Finance: Customs online - German tax area. Retrieved December 8, 2013.
  8. ^ Theodor Siebs: Helgoland and its language. Cuxhaven 1909, p. 20 f.
  9. ^ Wolfgang Laur: Fositesland and the Amber Island. In: ZSHG, Vol. 7475 (1951), p. 425.
  10. a b Reallexikon der Germanischen Altertumskunde, Vol. 14, Article Helgoland. Berlin 1999.
  11. So z. B. from Heike Grahn-Hoek: Online Holy Land - Helgoland and its earlier names . In: Uwe Ludwig, Thomas Schilp (ed.): Nomen et fraternitas. Festschrift for Dieter Geuenich on his 65th birthday (supplementary volumes to the Reallexikon des Germanic antiquity). De Gruyter, Berlin 2008, ISBN 978-3-11-020238-0 , p. 480.
  12. so in: Heike Grahn-Hoek: Roter Flint und Heiliges Land. Heligoland between prehistory and the Middle Ages. Neumünster 2009, p. 70.
  13. Announcement of the proclamation of the federal government on the expansion of the German territorial sea , from November 11, 1994, on gesetze-im-internet.de
  14. Federal Maritime and Hydrographic Agency : North Sea Sea Limit Map No. 2920. Hamburg / Rostock 1994. Compare, for example, Natura 2000 protection area reports created on this basis ... within German jurisdiction of the North Sea ( Memento of February 15, 2010 in the Internet Archive ) Federal Agency for Nature Conservation, accessed on August 27, 2013 (PDF; 440 KB).
  15. Map with the sovereign borders off the German coasts , at openstreetmap.org
  16. Helgoland Fortress ( Memento from March 1, 2017 in the Internet Archive ), photos and information on the island's history, accessed on March 1, 2017, from holger-raddatz.de
  17. 20 years Helgoland summit cross. Pinneberger Tageblatt, September 3, 2018
  18. Geoklima2.1d , on w-hanisch.de
  19. Alfred Wegener Institute : Sea temperature off Heligoland increased by 1.7 degrees ( memento from February 10, 2013 in the web archive archive.today ), press release 114/2012 of the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), from bmbf.de, from 17th September 2012
  20. Decade records (highs and lows of temperature) in German cities , etc. a. with Helgoland , wettergefahren-fruehwarnung.de
  21. O. Pratje: The stages in the development of the island of Helgoland . Geography 2, Bonn 1948, pp. 322-330.
  22. ^ P. Schmidt-Thomé: Helgoland. Collection of Geological Guides 82.Br. Borntraeger, Berlin 1987.
  23. Heinz-Gerd Röhling: Geological outpost in the middle of the North Sea - The island of Helgoland . In: Ernst-Rüdiger Look, Ludger Feldmann (Ed.): Fascination Geology. The most important geotopes in Germany . E. Schweizerbart'sche Verlagsbuchhandlung, Stuttgart 2006, ISBN 3-510-65219-3 , p. 6f.
  24. Description of the island caves ( Memento from June 15, 2015 in the Internet Archive ), accessed on June 13, 2015, from argekh.de
  25. April 1945: Helgoland in a hail of bombs , from August 22, 2012, on ndr.de
  26. April 18, 1947 - Military installations on Heligoland are blown up. Retrieved March 1, 2017 . , from April 18, 2012, from wdr.de
  27. ^ I. Bartsch, R. Kuhlenkamp: The marine macroalgae of Helgoland (North Sea): an annotated list of records between 1845 and 1999. Helgoland Marine Research 54, 2000, pp. 160-189.
  28. P. Kornmann, PH Sahling: Sea algae from Helgoland - Benthic green, brown and red algae. Biological Institute Helgoland, Hamburg 1983, ISSN  0017-9957 .
  29. For example Gotthold Salomon: Memories of the seaside resort on Heligoland in 1834. Hamburg 1835, pp. 134–150.
  30. ^ In: Gottlob Ludwig Rabenhorst : Contributions to the closer knowledge and distribution of the algae. Leipzig 1863. Further literature from Kornmann, see above.
  31. Britta Walbrun: The flora and vegetation of the island of Helgoland . Diploma thesis University of Göttingen, 1985.
  32. NaturMagazin outside: Helgoland. 1985, ISBN 3-616-06339-6 .
  33. a b Sensation: Albatros sighted on Heligoland , June 5, 2014, accessed on June 7, 2014, on welt.de
  34. Map services of the Federal Agency for Nature Conservation ( information )
  35. Ernst Tittel: The natural changes in Heligoland. Leipzig 1894, p. 31.
  36. Article Smelting and Metal Technology , in Reallexikon der Germanischen Altertumskunde (RGA), Vol. 32, Berlin 2006, p. 203, on books.google.de
  37. In the following from: Claus Ahrens: Helgoland in prehistoric times. In: HP Rickmers (ed.): Helgoland - natural monument of the North Sea. Hamburg 1980/1987.
  38. ^ Report by Jacob Andresen-Siemens from October 10, 1845, in: Jacob Andresen-Siemens: Works in 2 volumes. Edited by Eckhard Wallmann, Helgoland 2001.
  39. The enigmatic stone box grave of Heligoland . In: Hamburger Abendblatt ( dpa ), from August 19, 2014, p. 12, on Abendblatt.de
  40. ^ Jaap R. Beuker: The flint types of Helgoland and the use of Helgoland plate flint. In: Lower Saxony Institute for Historical Coastal Research (Ed.): Flint von Helgoland - The use of a unique source of raw materials on the North Sea coast (=  settlement and coastal research in the southern North Sea area , vol. 37). March Council Colloquium 2012, VML Verlag Leidorf, Rahden 2014, ISBN 978-3-86757-855-4 , p. 31.
  41. Cf. Rengert Elburg: Unique in Europe? Red Flint in the comparative collection Flintsource.net, poster for the March Council Colloquium 2012.
  42. Richard Hennig : Terrae incognitae: A compilation and critical evaluation of the most important pre-Columbian voyages of discovery on the basis of the original reports available about them . Volume 2, Leiden 1944.
  43. WJ Beckers: From the Germanic north in its earliest historical time: Wadden zone - Mentonomon - Abalos . In: Geographische Zeitschrift , 17th year, issue 11 (1911).
  44. Cf. Eckhard Wallmann: Helgoland - A German cultural history. Hamburg 2017, Chapter II.
  45. ^ Friedrich Oetker: Helgoland. Berlin 1855, p. 50 ff. ( Books.google.de ).
  46. ^ Albert Panten: Helgoland in the Middle Ages. Helgoland 2002, p. 11.
  47. See already: Erich Lüth: Helgoland - base or refuge of pirates? In: Yearbook for the Pinneberg District, Pinneberg 1972, pp. 84–91.
  48. Nils Hybel, Bjørn Poulsen: The Danish Resources C. 1000-1550: Growth and Recession , Leiden 2007, p. 222.
  49. Hans-Jürgen Gerhard, Alexander Engel: Price history of the pre-industrial times: a compendium based on ... , on books.google.de
  50. ^ Albert Panten: Helgoland in the Middle Ages. Helgoland 2002, p. 17.
  51. ^ Max Arnhold: Ship accidents off Heligoland. Hamburg 2008, p. 67.
  52. Raw copper finds off Heligoland , in Offa: Reports and communications on prehistory, early history and medieval archeology, on epic.awi.de (PDF; 2.1 MB)
  53. August Wilhelm Vahle Dieck: The Witte Kliff Helgoland. Bredstedt 1992, p. 42.
  54. See here and below: Michael Herms: Flag change on Helgoland. Berlin 2002, p. 17 ff.
  55. ^ Friedrich Oetker: Helgoland. Berlin 1855, p. 234.
  56. August Wilhelm Vahle Dieck: The Witte Kliff Helgoland. Bredstedt 1992, p. 44.
  57. Cf. August Wilhelm Vahlendieck: The Witte Kliff of Helgoland. Bredstedt 1992. Vahlendieck emphasizes that the Heligolanders are not responsible for the dismantling.
  58. G. Kortum: Alexander von Humboldt's visit to Helgoland in 1790 and the early development of marine biology in Germany . In: Writings of the Natural Science Association Schleswig-Holstein . tape 64 , 1994, pp. 111-133 .
  59. Eckhard Wallmann: Helgoland - A German cultural history. Hamburg 2017, Chapter III.
  60. See also: Benedikt Erenz: Helgoland - The incredible island. In: Die Zeit vom February 14, 2018 ( online ).
  61. Frank Lynder: Spies in Hamburg and on Helgoland. P. 108.
  62. Eckhard Wallmann: Helgoland - A German cultural history. Hamburg 2017, p. 41.
  63. Eckhard Wallmann: Helgoland - A German cultural history. Hamburg 2017, p. 47.
  64. Eckhard Wallmann: Helgoland - A German cultural history. Hamburg 2017, p. 188.
  65. Eckhard Wallmann: Helgoland - A German cultural history. Hamburg 2017, p. 210.
  66. See also: Benedikt Erenz: Helgoland - The incredible island. In: Die Zeit vom February 14, 2018 ( online ).
  67. Eckhard Wallmann: Helgoland - A German cultural history. Hamburg 2017, p. 184.
  68. Eckhard Wallmann: Helgoland - A German cultural history. Hamburg 2017, p. 366.
  69. Eckhard Wallmann: Helgoland - A German cultural history. Hamburg 2017, p. 339.
  70. Jan Rüger: Sovereignty and Empire in the North Sea, 1807-1918. In: American Historical Review, Vol. 119, No. 2, April 2014, pp. 313-338.
  71. Eckhard Wallmann: Helgoland - A German cultural history. Hamburg 2017, p. 421.
  72. Eckhard Wallmann: Helgoland - A German cultural history. Hamburg 2017, p. 420.
  73. Eckhard Wallmann: Helgoland - A German cultural history. Hamburg 2017, Chapter XII.
  74. ^ Fanny Alexandra Barkly: From the Tropics to the North Sea. London 1897.
  75. ^ Neue Zürcher Zeitung , August 10, 1890.
  76. ^ Adolf Wermuth : An official life. Berlin 1922.
  77. The fairy tale of the dumb Heligoland-Sansibar exchange (2015), accessed on June 30, 2015, on welt.de
  78. ^ Jan Rüger: Heligoland: Britain, Germany, and the Struggle for the North Sea. Oxford 2017, chapter 3.
  79. See Jan Rüger: Heligoland. Oxford 2017, p. 87, and Eckhard Wallmann: Helgoland - A German Cultural History. Chapter XIII.
  80. Eckhard Wallmann: Helgoland - A German cultural history. Hamburg 2017, Chapter XIII.
  81. Eckhard Wallmann: Helgoland - A German cultural history. Hamburg 2017, p. 564.
  82. An artist from Lübeck. In: Vaterstädtische Blätter , year 1903, No. 20, edition of May 17, 1903.
  83. ^ A b Eckhard Wallmann: Helgoland - A German cultural history. Hamburg 2017, p. 559.
  84. See: Claude Fröhle, Hans-Jürgen Kühn: Hochseefestung Helgoland. A military expedition 1891–1922. Herbolzheim 1998.
  85. The whole section follows the only writing about this time: Eckhard Wallmann: Eine Kolonie wird deutsch. Heligoland between the world wars. Bredstedt 2016 (first edition 2012).
  86. ^ Michael Rademacher: German administrative history from the unification of the empire in 1871 to the reunification in 1990. Landkreis Pinneberg. (Online material for the dissertation, Osnabrück 2006).
  87. Werner Heisenberg: The part and the whole. Conversations in the area of ​​atomic physics. Piper, Munich 1996, pp. 76-78.
  88. This section is also based on Eckhard Wallmann: A colony becomes German. Heligoland between the world wars. Bredstedt 2016 (first edition 2012).
  89. ^ Eckhard Wallmann: A colony becomes German. Heligoland between the world wars. 2., verb. Edition. Verlag Nordfriisk Instituut, Bredstedt 2016, pp. 119–140.
  90. ^ Sea War: December 1939 (Württembergische Landesbibliothek, Stuttgart), accessed on July 4, 2015, on wlb-stuttgart.de
  91. The information varies between 2.8 km and 13.8 km, indicative of the inevitable correlation between trivializing secrecy and the adventurous creation of legends.
  92. Michael Holm: Hunting Squadron Helgoland. Retrieved February 21, 2010 .
  93. ^ Heligoland and Kiel - The Elimination of the German navy and Its Bases. In: The Sphere , October 27, 1945, on bunker-whv.de ​​(English)
  94. Camp of Russian officers and soldiers, Helgoland Northeast , on spurensuche-kreis-pinneberg.de
  95. NDR. April 1945: Heligoland in a hail of bombs , from August 22, 2012; accessed on January 19, 2019
  96. Basic publication on the subject: A. Friederichs: We wanted to save Helgoland - On the trail of the resistance group from 1945. Museum Helgoland, 2010.
  97. Wolfgang Stelljes: Traitors came from within their own ranks. In: Journal (weekend supplement to Nordwest Zeitung ), Volume 70, No. 84 (April 11-12, 2015), p. 1.
  98. ^ Matthias Schmook: Uprising against an admiral. In: Hamburger Abendblatt , July 14, 2020, p. 16.
  99. Imke Zimmermann: In the protection of the red rocks - bunker on Helgoland. (No longer available online.) Archived from the original on March 5, 2016 ; accessed on March 1, 2017 . , from April 19, 2005, on fr-online.de
  100. a b April 1945: Heligoland in a hail of bombs. Norddeutscher Rundfunk , August 22, 2012, accessed on January 19, 2019.
  101. The surrender on the Timeloberg. Volksbund Deutsche Kriegsgräberfürsorge e. V. - District Association Lüneburg / Stade (PDF, 16 pages; 455 kB).
  102. The surrender on the Timeloberg. Retrieved January 19, 2019, p. 13.
  103. The Red Army came from the east, the Allies from the west. In: Lübecker Nachrichten , May 6, 2015, accessed on January 19, 2019.
  104. Heligoland. The history of Heligoland. Online offering from Planet Wissen , accessed January 20, 2019.
  105. ^ Island blasting in the North Sea Hell-Go-Land! In: Der Spiegel , April 18, 2017, accessed on January 19, 2018.
  106. Eckhard Wallmann: Helgoland: A German cultural history. Berlin 2017, chapter The Island Reclaimed.
  107. Nils Århammar: The 80-year-old Gerda Rickmers and family are a pillar of the Halunder. In: Der Helgoländer , November 2017, p. 24.
  108. Compare to: List of the largest artificial, non-nuclear explosions
  109. ^ Jan Rüger: Heligoland: Britain, Germany, and the Struggle for the North Sea. Oxford 2017, chapter 9.
  110. 6000 grenades with neurotoxins wanted off Heligoland. In: Hamburger Abendblatt , December 9, 2008.
  111. ^ Poison gas off Heligoland. In: Hamburger Abendblatt , June 17, 2009.
  112. Claus Böttcher, Tobias Knobloch, Niels-Peter Rühl, Jens Sternheim, Uwe Wichert, Joachim Wöhler: Assessment report chemical ammunition in the dumping area of ​​Helgoländer Loch. 2011 (PDF; 2.75 MB).
  113. ^ Hermann Ehmer:  Hubertus Prince of Löwenstein-Wertheim-Freudenberg. In: New German Biography (NDB). Volume 15, Duncker & Humblot, Berlin 1987, ISBN 3-428-00196-6 , p. 100 f. ( Digitized version ).
  114. March 1, 1952: Heligoland is German again. Documentation on the NDR website from February 29, 2012.
  115. ^ Jan Lubitz: Architect portrait Georg Wellhausen , on architekten-portrait.de
  116. ^ Jan Lubitz: Architect portrait Konstanty Gutschow , on architekten-portrait.de
  117. ^ Jan Lubitz: Architect portrait Godber Nissen , on architekten-portrait.de
  118. Otto Bartning , on otto-bartning.de
  119. ^ According to the digital collection of the island prospectuses in the Museum Helgoland
  120. Tee off from Helgoland: Golfing in the Gulf Stream. In: Spiegel Online . June 23, 2004, accessed October 7, 2018 .
  121. Gisela Schütte: First-class prices in the loneliest hotel in the world (Großer Vogelsand lighthouse). In: welt.de . February 27, 2003, accessed October 7, 2018 .
  122. ↑ Connect the main island and dune by means of sand flushing ( memento from June 30, 2011 in the Internet Archive ), voting result, press release of the municipality of Helgoland, from June 26, 2011, accessed on June 28, 2011
  123. Helgoland remains as it is , Süddeutsche Zeitung of June 27, 2011, accessed on July 4, 2011
  124. British bomb defused: Half of Heligoland was evacuated
  125. https://www.welt.de/regionales/hamburg/article181472314/Helgolands-Buergermeister-Wir-haben-immer-juenger.html
  126. Helgoland No. 678 of October 2020, page 16
  127. Schleswig-Holstein's municipal coat of arms, Schleswig-Holstein State Archives.
  128. State Statistical Office Schleswig-Holstein (Ed.): The population of the communities in Schleswig-Holstein 1867–1970 . State Statistical Office Schleswig-Holstein, Kiel 1972, p. 124 .
  129. Fastest connection via Hamburg , from August 11, 2010
  130. spd-helgoland.info
  131. SSW suddenly with a political majority on Heligoland. Hamburger Abendblatt, accessed on October 26, 2019 .
  132. James-Krüss-Schule ( school homepage), accessed on March 1, 2017, from jks-helgoland.de
  133. a b Do you think differently on Heligoland, Mrs. Pastor? Evangelische Zeitung, accessed on March 17, 2020 .
  134. a b Small island facing great change. Neue KirchenZeitung, accessed on March 17, 2020 .
  135. Bonifatiuswerk der Deutschen Katholiken (Ed.): Diaspora-Jahrheft 2012/2013. Paderborn 2012, p. 54.
  136. Evangelical Lutheran St. Nicolai Parish in Helgoland , on kirche-helgoland.de
  137. Berliner Tageblatt of February 10, 1914
  138. En Denkmoal en de cholera, ferhoalt fan Franz Schensky. In: "der helgoländer", November 2016, pp. 1–2.
  139. Language- friendly : Helgoland and Treene Office . In: Nordfriisk Instituut (Ed.): Nordfriesland. Magazine for culture, politics, economy . No.  149 , 2005, pp. 7 ( online [PDF; 5.5 MB ; accessed on December 13, 2012]).
  140. ^ Museum Helgoland (James Krüss Museum), on museum-helgoland.de
  141. Bluehouse Helgoland (Aquarium-Förderverein), on bluehouse-helgoland.de
  142. ^ Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research (AWI): Aquarium Helgoland ( Memento from July 27, 2013 in the Internet Archive ), accessed on August 3, 2013.
  143. Wasserstraßen- und Schifffahrtsamt Tönning (WSA Tönning), accessed on September 25, 2011.
  144. Football on the high seas island: Only home games on Helgoland , on dfb.de.
  145. https://www.statistik-nord.de/fileadmin/Dokumente/Statistische_Berichte/industrie__handel_und_dienstl/G_IV_1_j_S/G_IV_1-j17-SH.pdf
  146. § 1 Paragraph 2 Sentences 1 and 2 of the Sales Tax Act (UStG); possibly also in connection with § 4 No. 6 letter d or e UStG.
  147. The law on a community import tax on the island of Helgoland of November 17, 1959 ( Federal Law Gazette 1959 I p. 685 ) authorizes the state of Schleswig-Holstein (subject to certain conditions) to apply a state law to excise goods imported into Helgoland Tax (municipal import tax ) to be levied. The state of Schleswig-Holstein made use of this right through the law on the levying of an import tax on the island of Heligoland of December 7, 1959. Based on this, Sections  14 and  5 , the Ministry of the Interior, in agreement with the Ministry of Finance, issued the state ordinance on the levying of an import tax on the island of Helgoland (Municipality import tax ordinance Helgoland) of September 11, 2008. Authorization by federal law is required because the Federal Constitutional Court ruled in the decision of the Second Senate of October 29, 1958 (file number 2 BvL 19/56) (BVerfGE 8, 260 - Helgoland Law) that the municipal import tax is not concerned a customs in the sense of Art. 105 paragraph 1 of the Basic Law (GG) acts, but the collection of the community import tax is a "collection of duties on the movement of goods across the border of a customs exclusion area that is not connected to a foreign customs area" that is "to the customs of the Federal government, which according to Art. 73 no. 5 GG [today Art. 73 Paragraph 1 No. 5] is subject to the exclusive competence of the federal legislature . ”The special conditions on the island have spoken against the application of the entire federal German customs and consumption tax law on the island; Among other things, the customs and excise tax treatment of ships calling at the island in emergencies has been deemed impracticable. Also, for administrative reasons, the island can only be properly monitored by the customs authorities with great difficulty (I. the reasoning of the draft law on a municipal import tax on the island of Helgoland ( printed matter of the German Bundestag 3/1210 ), accessed and received on December 15, 2017 (PDF file; 193 kB)). For the administration of the municipality of Helgoland, this represents a special regulation of the municipal finance law ( Section 6 of the law on the administration of the municipality of Helgoland (Helgoland law 1966) of February 17, 1966, as amended on December 31, 1971).
  148. 175 years of seaside resort Helgoland: From fishing village to holiday rock , Rhein-Zeitung , 2001
  149. Helgoland: Lieber Windstrom than Whiskey-XXL , Zeit Online , July 19, 2012, on zeit.de
  150. Helgoland has been German again for 60 years - the offshore island is celebrating. ( Memento from September 24, 2015 in the Internet Archive ) Sächsische Zeitung, March 1, 2013.
  151. Group blocks hotel on Helgoland for ten years , from April 2, 2012, on welt.de.
  152. Helgoland: water temperature 34 degrees , from July 11, 2007, on abendblatt.de
  153. a b Helgoland's tourism director Klaus Furtmeier receives early contract extension ( memento from February 6, 2013 in the web archive archive.today ), accessed on March 1, 2017; from insel-helgoland.de
  154. ^ Anne-Katrin Wehrmann: Island tourism should benefit from offshore wind energy . In: Hansa , issue 6/2013, p. 83.
  155. RWE, E.ON and WindMW present plans for an operating base on Heligoland for offshore wind power plants. Press release. RWE Innogy , August 5, 2011, accessed on August 8, 2011 .
  156. ^ Anne-Katrin Wehrmann: An island in transition - from the "Fuselfelsen" to the modern "Helgoland 3.0" . In: Hansa , issue 12/2012, Schiffahrts-Verlag Hansa, Hamburg 2012, ISSN  0017-7504 , pp. 46-49.
  157. Anne-Katrin Wehrmann: Offshore industry has arrived on Heligoland . In: Hansa , issue 12/2013, Schiffahrts-Verlag Hansa. Hamburg 2013, ISSN  0017-7504 , pp. 34/35.
  158. Ingo Hadrych: expansion of Helgoland South Harbor . In: Hansa , issue 12/2014, ISSN  0017-7504 , pp. 82-85.
  159. Helgoland is fundamentally reinventing itself . In: Segler-Zeitung , issue 6/2013, ISSN 0930-2891 , pp. 144/145.  
  160. ^ Project Meerwind South / East. WindMW , accessed on September 9, 2011 .
  161. Time for something to turn: The opening day of Nordsee Ost ( memento from September 9, 2015 in the web archive archive.today ), RWE AG , accessed on March 1, 2017
  162. http://www.die-linke-helgoland.de/politik/mektiven/detail/browse/3/zurueck/mektiven-2/artikel/helgoland-basis-als-offshore-standort-fuer-windparkversorgung/ idw-online .de
  163. ↑ In 1995 the station of the protection police in Bremer Straße was closed and the state police tasks (protection police and water protection police) were bundled in the guard of the water protection police in Hafenstraße. See Helgoländer No. 371 from May 1995, page 19 Water protection is now in charge .
  164. ↑ Submarine cable arrived in front of Heligoland . In: Daily port report of June 22, 2009, p. 2.
  165. ↑ The new Helgoland ferry goes on tour in October ( memento from October 12, 2015 in the web archive archive.today ), from September 1, 2015, accessed on March 1, 2017, from cassen-eils.de
  166. FRS orders new Heligoland catamaran ( Memento from September 18, 2017 in the Internet Archive ).
  167. End of a boat trip , from August 15, 2007, on focus.de
  168. This special right applies according to number I. to § 35 paragraph 6 (Rn. 13) of the general administrative regulation for road traffic regulations (VwV-StVO) (last changed by BAnz AT 29.05.2017 B8 ) also for vehicles of the road winter service , which to Snow removal , gritting , etc. are used. According to number II. To § 35 paragraph 6 (Rn. 14) the vehicles are to be marked according to DIN 30710 . Unmarked vehicles may not make use of the special rights (number III. To § 35 paragraph 6 (Rn. 13)).
  169. Application for an exemption from the traffic ban on the island of Helgoland - § 50 StVO . In: www.kreis-pinneberg.de . Pinneberg district , accessed and received on December 18, 2017 ( docx file; 72.62 kB).
  170. Markus Bruhn: With the license to shop. E-Golf for the police on Heligoland , on spiegel.de
  171. Island Railway
  172. The Mayor of the municipality of Helgoland: Guidelines for the granting of special permits § 50 StVO for bicycles ( Memento from September 3, 2013 in the Internet Archive ). Published on notice on May 29, 2012. Accessed and received on December 16, 2017 (valid from June 1, 2012, PDF file; 139 kB).
  173. Gauge 1000 mm ( memento from July 8, 2012 in the web archive archive.today ), Helgoland Marinehafenbauamt, on home.arcor.de
  174. Railways on the island of Helgoland: The Second World War ( memento from September 5, 2012 in the web archive archive.today ), on niederelbebahn.de
  175. https://www.zoll.de/DE/Fachthemen/Zoelle/Ernahme-Warenverkehr/Zollgebiet/zollgebiet_node.html
  176. https://www.paketda.de/news-zollfreigrenze-22-euro-abgeschetzt.html
  177. ^ René Leudesdorff: We liberated Heligoland - the peaceful invasion in 1950/51 . Cobra-Verlag, Husum 1987, ISBN 3-923146-02-7 .
  178. Anniversary: ​​10 years of the summit cross on the Pinneberg on Helgoland ( Memento from December 31, 2010 in the Internet Archive ), press release from the Helgoland spa administration on helgoland.de
This version was added to the list of articles worth reading on June 11, 2005 .