2. Group
  3. History

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Place of Remembrance of Forced Labour in the Volkswagen Factory

The exhibition provides information about forced labour and armaments production at the former Volkswagenwerk GmbH.

The “Place of Remembrance of Forced Labour in the Volkswagen Factory” is a permanent exhibition which opened in 1999. It is housed in a former air-raid shelter in shed 1 at the Wolfsburg plant. Each room of the shelter deals with a specific topic. The documents, photos, eyewitness accounts and items loaned by those personally affected provide a detailed insight into the scale of forced labour and the extent of the company’s involvement in the National Socialist war economy.

A digital media station uses photos and newspaper reports to show Volkswagen AG’s examination of its history under National Socialism and its commemorative work. The media station also focuses on the disbursement from the “Humanitarian Fund for Former Forced Labourers”. At a listening station, contemporary witnesses talk about their memories of that time.  

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Corporate Archives

The Volkswagen Aktiengesellschaft Corporate Archives, which contain a comprehensive store of documents, represent the Group’s collective memory.

Customers and employees the world over can identify with Volkswagen Aktiengesellschaft through its history. The Corporate Archives in Wolfsburg provide the tools for this journey of discovery. The archives only store documents of genuine significance, and make them available for research and other uses. Almost five kilometres of files, nearly a million photos, 1,800 films, 70,000 publications and 15,000 drawings as well as digital data are housed in the archives. This material is the starting point for writing history and the foundation for legal authentication. It is the source of answers to questions on the history of Volkswagen, its products, plants and employees. Access to the documents in the Corporate Archives released for public use is possible by prior arrangement.


A wide range of publications, including audio books and a DVD, highlight the many facets of the history of the Volkswagen Group.

Volkswagen examines a wide range of aspects of its corporate history in numerous publications. For instance, the “Historical Notes” (Historische Notate – HN) series includes eye witness accounts of former forced labourers and publications on the post-war period as well as on various topics relating to the company’s history. The regularly updated Chronicle is also published here in print.

Scientific presentations on various themes relating to the Group’s history are published in a series entitled “Research, Positions, Documents” (Forschungen Positionen Dokumente – FPD). The history of legendary Volkswagen models as well as individual divisions are frequently highlighted in no particular order and separately from the series.

In addition to the printed books, audio books and a DVD have also been released.

The publications are available in German and some in English as well. They are available as books and can also be downloaded for free.

Historical Study: "VW do Brasil in the Brazilian Military Dictatorship 1964 -1985"

On December 14th, 2017 Volkswagen Aktiengesellschaft presented in Brasil an independent study by historian Christopher Kopper titled "VW do Brasil in the Brazilian Military Dictatorship 1964 -1985". The study is published in German, English and Portuguese.

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Historical Notes

  • Volume 9: From the Beetle to a Global Player

    From the Beetle to a Global Player.
    Volkwagen Chronicle

    ISBN 978-3-5112-25-3

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  • Volume 8: Changing Lanes Under British Command

    Markus Lupa

    Changing Lanes Under British Command.
    The Transformation of Volkswagen from a Factory into a Commercial Enterprise, 1945 - 1949

    ISBN 978-3-935112-44-4

    Downlod PDF

  • Volume 7: Volkswagen Chronicle

    Volkswagen Chronicle.
    Becoming a Global Player

    ISBN 978-3-935112-11-6
    (Out of print)

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  • Volume 6: Volkswagen Financial Services AG

    Volkswagen Financial Services AG.
    Bank, Leasing, Insurance – A Chronicle of 60 Years of Financial Services

    ISBN 978-3-935112-38-3
    (Out of print)

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  • Volume 5: Work Exhibition 1

    Manfred Grieger/Dirk Schlinkert

    Work Exhibition 1.
    Images from the Volkswagen Photo Centre 1948 - 1974

    ISBN 978-3-935112-26-0

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  • Volume 4: Ivan Hirst

    Ralf Richter

    Ivan Hirst.
    British Officer and Manager of Volkswagen’s Postwar Recovery

    ISBN 978-3-935112-13-0

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  • Volume 3: Surviving in Fear

    Surviving in Fear.
    Four Jews Describe Their Time at the Volkswagen Factory from 1943 to 1945

    ISBN 978-3-935112-22-2

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  • Volume 2: The British and Their Works

    Markus Lupa

    The British and Their Works.
    The Volkswagenwerk and the Occupying Power 1945 - 1949

    ISBN 978-3-935112-05-5
    (Out of print)

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  • Volume 1: Learning from History

    Klaus Kocks/Hans-Jürgen Uhl

    Learning from History.
    Comments on Efforts by Volkswagen’s Workforce, Labor Representatives, Executives, and Corporate Management to Come to Terms with the Issue of Forced Labor During the Third Reich

    ISBN 978-3-93511215-4
    (Out of print)

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  • Catalogue: Place of Remembrance of Forced Labor in the Volkswagen Factory

    Place of Remembrance of Forced Labor in the Volkswagen Factory

    ISBN 978-3-935112-08-6

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Research, Positions, Documents

  • Volume 3: Towards Mobility

    Towards Mobility.
    Varieties of Automobilism in East and West

    ISBN 3-935112-34-5

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Model histories

  • 25.000.000 Golf

    Golf Barren
    25 000 000 Golf

    ISBN 978-3-935112-29-1

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