"Germany's Dismemberment" (1928)
This map was commissioned by the government in 1928 for school books. It depicts German territorial losses after World War One according to the terms of the Versailles treaty. It shows the areas ceded by the German Empire and Austria, that is, those “lost to Germany” (black); those under occupation (yellow); and those whose status depended on plebiscites (orange, red, yellow). Territories whose plebiscites yielded ostensibly questionable results are marked “sham plebiscites.” Also portrayed are territorial sizes (in square kilometers) and population figures, with the population of Austria noted as “6,300,000 Germans.” The Versailles treaty explicitly forbade designating Austrian territory as “German-Austria,” and it prohibited the joining of Austria to Germany. This map is an example of persuasive cartography that used a graphic medium to carry political and polemical messages. The cartographer, Arnold Hillen Ziegfeld, was a member of the the right-wing, nationalist German Protection League and became a member of the Nazi party already in 1921. A revised version of this map was published in Braun-Ziegfeld’s Geopolitischem Geschichtsatlas (Geopolitical Historical Atlas) in 1929. Ziegfeld was particularly active in cartographic propaganda, and he called his maps “carto-graphics” (Kartographik) because they joined elements of cartography and applied graphic arts.
© Bildarchiv Preußischer Kulturbesitz