Famous Artists, History Highlights, Prussia...Northern Germany, Second Reich...1871 to 1918

Departure of King Wilhelm I. of Prussia to join the Army on July 13, 1870


An excerpt from “Departure of King Wilhelm I. of Prussia to join the Army on July 13, 1870” at the outbreak of the Franco-Prussian War, by Adolph von Menzel. The King would return to Berlin 11 months later, in June 1871, not only victorious but also as the new Kaiser of the German Empire, already proclaimed Emperor at the Versailles Palace in France. The homecoming parade was a triumphant day in the history of Germany, celebrating both the defeat of arch-enemy France and the unification of most German states into one new Second Reich. The German people believed that they had finally recovered the greatness that they once had under the reign of Kaiser Friedrich Barbarossa.

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