The scientific council
The scientific council meets for a strategy meeting for the museums' history
The archaeologic open air museum Oerlinghausen is the oldest germanic open air museum of the world. On monday the 9th of December 2013, a group of renowned scientists from all over Germany met at the university in Bielefeld to find out how you can do up the history of the museum and present it to the publicity. The invited archaeologists interest was enormous, despite of the busy pre-christman period, there were nearly no cancellations.
'If we want to do up the national socialistic history of open air museums in Germany, we will do best in Oerlinghausen.' was the finishing statement of prof. dr. Uta Halle, the state archaeologist of Bremen. In summer, Uta Halle showed the first much respected mayor exhibition to this subject at the Focke-Museum in Bremen with the title 'Digging for Germania'.
It became very clear that the publicity should get informed on this subject. No other archaeologic open air museum has a comprehensively multifarious history, none has so many pictures from history. One picture, the national one from 1936 opposes the germanic idyll from 1961, the puristic reconstructions from the 80ies and the 90ies and the postmodern approaches from the last decade. Their confrontation shows impressively, how the respective ideology influences the history. Schallmayer pointed out vividly, how prepackaged history appears: The ideo for example that the battle of the Teutoburg forest was a meaningful break in the romanic history, is still believed by the collective mind of the Germans, despite of hundreds of oppositing proofs.
Angle of the meeting was the founding of the museum in the olympic year 1936. At this time they presented a radical new Germanic picture that was more influenced by science than by the Weimar Republic. The total ideologization of the contents faced that reclamed science. The history picture with Germanic actors and completely furnished buildings designed in Oerlinghausen had an impressive effect at the international mass. Parts of the wrong content from then are still mentioned in school books and media. 1945, the manipulation on the germanic contents didn't end, the enlightment for the history politics of the extreme right had to wait until now.
The founding time could be presented in the museum by making a radical destrucion. It was suggested to cut open a germanic house in the middle, where the right part of the house shows the NS-reconstruction and the left todays state of research. The confrontation would directly show, how diffrent the same finding can be interpreted. There would also be a new educational offer by the museum in that part. The subject "nationalistic Germanic picture" makes an expansion towards older classes of students.
Moritz Ilemann, the first chairman of the museums supporters club and the representative principal of the state association of Lippe was pleased of the big resonance. The archaeologic open air museum Oerlinghausen is just not only the museum with the most visitors of the state association, it also helps that its scientific reputation gets known far over the borders of Lippe.
Bildunterschrift: Heiße Diskussionen an der Universität Bielefeld zum Freilichtmuseum Oerlinghausen.
Meeting participants (9.12.13) of the scientific council of the archaeological open air museum in Oerlinghausen:
- Prof. dr. Uta Halle, state archaeology, Bremen
- Apl. prof. dr. Gisela Diewald-Kerkmann, latest history department, Bielefeld
- Dr. Ulrike Gilhaus, leadership of the LWL office, Münster
- Dr. Elke Treude, state museum Lippe, Detmold
- Prof. Dr. Egon Schallmayer, leading director of archaeology, archaeologic and palaeontologic monument preservation Hessen, Wiesbaden
- PD dr. Jörg van Norden, Bielefeld
- Dr. Michael Zelle, direktor, state museum of Lippe, Detmold
- Dr. Günter Bernhardt, representative leader, LWL Westphalia, Münster
- Dr. Sven Spiong, museum in the imperial palace, Paderborn
- Dr. Barbara Rüschoff-Thale, LWL, Münster (hindered)