Museum Koenig Bonn

Monday, 4 September 2023 - 11:00 am (CET/MEZ) Berlin | Author/Destination:
Category/Kategorie: General, Museums, Exhibitions
Reading Time:  4 minutes

© Ursula Jünger/cc-by-sa-4.0

© Ursula Jünger/cc-by-sa-4.0

The Alexander Koenig Zoological Research Museum (German: Zoologisches Forschungsmuseum Alexander Koenig, abbreviated ZFMK) is a natural history museum and zoological research institution in Bonn, Germany. The museum is named after Alexander Koenig, who donated his collection of specimens to the institution. The museum was opened in 1934 and is affiliated with the Leibniz Association. On 1 September 1948 the museum saw the opening of the Parlamentarischer Rat, the organ to create the German constitution. The actual proceedings happened in the nearby Pädagogische Akademie, the later Bundeshaus.

The museum was founded by the private scholar Alexander Koenig (1858–1940) as a private institute for zoological research and public education. Alexander Koenig, who was born in 1858 as the son of the wealthy merchant Leopold Koenig, began to collect birds and mammals as a boy. He later studied zoology and received a doctorate in natural history in 1884. In the following years he organized and funded several expeditions to the Arctic and Africa and greatly expanded his private collection of specimens.

After his father died in 1903, Alexander Koenig planned a natural history museum to present his private collection to the public. On 3 September 1912, the foundation stone to the new Museum Alexander Koenig was laid. After the outbreak of World War I in 1914, the uncompleted building was confiscated and used as a military hospital and later, until 1923, as barracks by the French occupying forces. Alexander Koenig, who had lost most of his fortune in the aftermath of the war, donated the museum and his private collection to the German government in 1929. The museum finally opened its doors to the public on 13 May 1934.

© Ziko van Dijk/cc-by-sa-4.0 Konrad Adenauer Room © Ursula Jünger/cc-by-sa-4.0 © Ursula Jünger/cc-by-sa-4.0 Garden © Sir James/cc-by-sa-3.0 © Wolkenkratzer/cc-by-sa-3.0 © Eckhard Henkel/cc-by-sa-3.0-de
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Konrad Adenauer Room © Ursula Jünger/cc-by-sa-4.0
After World War II the museum building, which was left largely intact by the war, was the only representative and large assembly hall available in Bonn, now capital of West Germany. This was the reason why the museum was used by the Parlamentarischer Rat (English: parliamentary council), for its opening session on 1 September 1948. At this time plans were made to use the museum building as the Chancellor’s Office (German: Bundeskanzleramt), but it was eventually only used for two months by the new chancellor Konrad Adenauer in 1949.

The museum defines its mission as “researching and explaining the diversity of species of Earth”. The main exhibition is titled “Unser blauer Planet – Leben im Netzwerk” (Our blue planet – living in a network). It shows complex ecological systems through dioramas of the African Savannah, a tropical rain forests, the polar regions, deserts and Central Europe. Aside from the permanent exhibition the museum houses special exhibitions regularly.

Today the Museum Koenig is housed in a complex of several buildings dating from different times and serving different purposes. The building complex includes the main building, the Villa, the Private Museum and the Class M. Naumann Building. The main building of the Museum Koenig houses the public exhibition and features a large central hall crowned by a glass roof.

Read more on Museum Koenig, Wikipedia Basic Law for the Federal Republic of Germany and Wikipedia Museum Koenig (Smart Traveler App by U.S. Department of State - Weather report by weather.com - Global Passport Power Rank - Travel Risk Map - Democracy Index - GDP according to IMF, UN, and World Bank - Global Competitiveness Report - Corruption Perceptions Index - Press Freedom Index - World Justice Project - Rule of Law Index - UN Human Development Index - Global Peace Index - Travel & Tourism Competitiveness Index). Photos by Wikimedia Commons. If you have a suggestion, critique, review or comment to this blog entry, we are looking forward to receive your e-mail at comment@wingsch.net. Please name the headline of the blog post to which your e-mail refers to in the subject line.




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