Hopefully most of you know that yesterday, March 14th, would have been Albert Einstein’s 131st birthday had he lived that long. My father began a tradition for celebrating the famed physicist’s life and work on the anniversary of his birth when we lived in Princeton and although we are all grown up and all in different places at present, the memory of this tradition is very much alive. I had wanted to include this post yesterday but had not had a moment to sit down and write. Being that this is a travel blog I wanted to go back in time to the place of Einstein’s birth and take a look at what the city now looks like.
Albert Einstein was born on March 14th, 1879 in the German city of Ulm to Hermann Einstein and Pauline Koch. The house he was born in, Bahnhofstrasse 20, was erected in 1871 and in 1944 in the midst of the war was destroyed during one of the heaviest bombarments to take place in Ulm. Einstein was not, it seems, too particularly attached to his birthplace (the family moved in 1880 to Munich) but through letters it seems he may have visited Ulm a few times later on in life as a sort of passing through.
Though Albert Einstein spent little time in that city, Ulm today has honored the physicist in many ways. The first honor bestowed upon the famed scientist was the naming of a street after him in 1929 called Einsteinstrasse (renamed during the Nazi regime Fichtestrasse after a German philosopher and then changed back to Einsteinstrasse in 1945). Many other honors ensued and on his 125th birthday in 2004, a ceremonial act took place in the Congress Center in Ulm in his honor. You can read more about Albert Eistein and Ulm here.
Let us now take a look at Ulm today.