Landsberg am Lech

Landsberg am Lech (Landsberg on the river Lech) is a town in southwest Bavaria, Germany, about 65 kilometers west of Munich and 35 kilometers south of Augsburg. It is the capital of the district of Landsberg am Lech.

Landsberg am Lech
The Lech in Landsberg

Coat of arms
Location of Landsberg am Lech within Landsberg am Lech district
Landsberg am Lech
Landsberg am Lech
Coordinates: 48°02′52″N 10°53′56″E
Admin. regionOberbayern
DistrictLandsberg am Lech
Subdivisions6 Ortsteile
  Lord MayorMathias Neuner (CSU)
  Total57.89 km2 (22.35 sq mi)
585-630 m (−1,482 ft)
  Density500/km2 (1,300/sq mi)
Time zoneCET/CEST (UTC+1/+2)
Postal codes
Dialling codes08191 08246 (Ellighofen)
Vehicle registrationLL


Landsberg is situated on the Romantic Road and is the center of the Lechrain region, the boundary region between Swabia and Bavaria. It is noted for its picturesque historic center.

Landsberg am Lech developed where a major historic salt road crossed over the Lech. To protect the bridge, Duke Henry the Lion ordered a castle to be built, Castrum Landespurch, incorporating an older settlement and castle named Phetine. Soon a greater settlement evolved, which received its town charter as early as the 13th century.

In 1315, the town burned down, but was rebuilt because of its important location. In 1320, Landsberg was permitted to collect salt duties, bringing considerable wealth to the town. In 1419, a river tax added a further source of income.

The town is noted for its prison where Adolf Hitler was incarcerated in 1924. During this incarceration Hitler wrote/dictated his book Mein Kampf together with Rudolf Hess. His cell, number 7, became part of the Nazi cult and many followers came to visit it during the German Nazi-period. Landsberg am Lech was also known as the town of the Hitler Youth.[2]

In the outskirts of this town existed the largest concentration camp in Germany during the Nazi rule, where over 30,000 victims were imprisoned under inhuman conditions, resulting in the death of around 14,500 of them.

Following World War II it was the location for one of the largest Displaced Person (DP) camps for Jewish refugees and the place of execution for more than 150 war criminals after 1945.[3]

It is the birthplace of the Nobel laureate Erwin Neher.


Town areas

The town comprises three main areas. The historic old town centre of Landsberg, which lies between the river Lech and its easterly elevated bank. The area to the west of the Lech (Katharinenvorstadt, Neuerpfting, Weststadt, Schwaighofsiedlung – today by far the biggest part of the town) and the area on the easterly elevated bank (Bayervorstadt) developed since the early 19th century.

Also belonging to Landsberg are the hamlets of Sandau and Pössing as well as the former independent boroughs of Ellighofen, Erpfting (with Friedheim, Geratshof and Mittelstetten), Pitzling (with Pöring) and Reisch (with Thalhofen).

Landsberg Concentration Camp and displaced person camp

The Landsberg camp began as a Nazi concentration camp. By October 1944, there were more than 5,000 prisoners in the camp.

The camp was liberated on April 27, 1945, by the 12th Armored Division of the United States Army. Upon orders from General Taylor, the American forces allowed news media to record the atrocities, and ordered local German civilians and guards to reflect upon the dead and bury them bare-handed. After the liberation of the camp it became a displaced person (DP) camp, primarily for Jewish refugees from the Soviet Union and the Baltic states.

A dramatization of the discovery and liberation of the camp was presented in Episode 9: Why We Fight of the Band of Brothers mini-series.[4]

The camp closed on October 15, 1950.

In December 2019, Israeli academic and translator Ilana Hammerman wrote of the difficulties she encountered in trying to visit the site of the camp and to find the memorial to the victims. She noted that "[f]or decades after the war, local residents and the authorities endeavored to ignore its existence and consign it to oblivion".[5]

Notable people

Twin towns - sister cities

Landsberg am Lech is twinned with:[6]


Landsberg is home to the following sports clubs:

Club Sport League Established
TSV Landsberg Football Landesliga Bayern 1882
Landsberg Riverkings Ice hockey BEL 2008
Landsberg X-PRESS American Football Regionalliga Süd 2007
DJK Landsberg Basketball Regionalliga 1956
Jahn Landsberg Football A-Klasse Oberbayern 1923
Türkspor Landsberg Football A-Klasse Oberbayern --
Landsberg Cruisaders Baseball Bezirksliga Bayern 2003
Landsberg Kodiacs Softball Landesliga Bayern 2009
Landsberg BB-Dance Camp Dance Boogie Woogie Dance Festival 1987


  • Burgett, Daniel R. (2001). Beyond the Rhine. New York: Dell Publishing. pp. 119–134.
  • Thomas Raithel, Die Strafanstalt Landsberg am Lech und der Spöttinger Friedhof (1944-1958). Eine Dokumentation im Auftrag des Instituts für Zeitgeschichte München-Berlin (München: Oldenbourg 2009).


  1. "Fortschreibung des Bevölkerungsstandes". Bayerisches Landesamt für Statistik und Datenverarbeitung (in German). July 2019.
  2. Landsberg - the City of the Youth during WWII article by Anton Posset and the Citizens´Association "Landsberg in the 20th Century", see also Citizens´Association European Holocaust Memorial Foundation: „Landsberg: The City of Youth
  3. The future began at DP-Camp Landsberg article by Anton Posset. See also:This article traces the origin and history of the DP-camp Landsberg between 1945 and 1952.
  4. Original movie of the U.S. Army: liberation of the concentration camp Kaufering IV (by Landsberg Lech), in April 1945: This film and the photos, made by the U.S. Army, served as a template for Part 9 "Band of Brothers"
  5. Hammerman, Ilana (6 December 2019). "A Picturesque Bavarian Town Shows That Germany Isn't Confronting Its Nazi Past". Haaretz. Retrieved 6 December 2019.
  6. "Partnerstädte". (in German). Landsberg am Lech. Retrieved 2019-11-27.
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