City Museum Harburg presents an exhibition in the new series “City. Country. Photo.”


A treasure in black and white: The photo archive of Gerhard Beier (1927-2010)


The 1950s represent a time of awakening and hope. The Stadtmuseum Harburg is showing a new special exhibition that brings this time back to life: How did one live, how did one work in Harburg at back then? What did a shopping spree look like? How did the people of Harburg spend their free time? Gerhard Beier – photographer for the local newspaper “Harburger Anzeigen und Nachrichten” (HAN) – captured these moments with the camera at the time. What Beier was daily work, reveals itself in retrospect as an important photographic treasure.  Whether it’s street scenes, pictures of the marksmen’s fair on the Schwarzenberg or sports competitions from the post-war harburg of the early 1950s – the photographs are a valuable archive of everyday  life and contemporary history. For the experts of the museum it quickly became clear that this exciting photo treasure should be shown as part of a multi-part exhibition series. More than 50 black-and-white photographs are now on display in the first exhibition “Harburg Stories: The 1950s”, which allow visitors to take a stroll through this decade.


Gerhard Beier’s estate, which was transferred to the Stadtmuseum Harburg after his death in 2010, includes a photo archive consisting of around 190,000 carefully labelled negatives from the period 1952 to 1991 and documents his many years of work as a photographer for “Harburger Anzeigen und Nachrichten” (HAN).


If you look at the photos of Gerhard Beier, you will find yourself in the middle of a 1950s idyll: The weekly market on the sand in the summer of 1959 – under umbrellas, traders offer their goods on well-stocked stalls. Looking at the photos by Gerhard Beier, you will suddenly find yourself in the middle of a 1950s idyll: the weekly market on the Sand in the summer of 1959 – under umbrellas, traders offer their goods on well-stocked stalls. Men in hats and dark suits, young women with petticoats and ponytails, a VW Beetle parked next to a pre-war car on the side of the road, and a cabin scooter approaches with characteristic rattling. Between the commissioned photos, however, there are also private photos that document everyday life.



Beier_Filling Station

Filling Station

Beier_Traffic Accident

Trouble on the Question of Guilt


In 1949, Beier joined the HAN as a courier and newspaper driver. Later, when a position in the photo lab of the editorial office became vacant, he moved to this department. From his wife, who was a photo lab technician by profession, he had acquired important knowledge. He developed films, produced the required magnifications according to the instructions of the editors and became a photographer for the HAN himself until he retired in 1991.






For Gerhard Beier, the recordings were initially primarily a daily task: car accidents, firefighting missions, children’s festivals and fashion shows, shooting festivals in the city and in the district of Harburg. He documented exhibitions of small animal breeders as well as party events and official receptions. Beier was particularly well known as a photo reporter at sporting events. Football matches are a focal point in his work, but he was also involved with the camera in field handball and boxing competitions at Friedrich-Ebert-Halle. From now, with the first exhibition of the new series “City. Country. Photo.” under the title “Harburg Stories: The 1950s” there are more than 50 of his photographs on view, which take visitors on a foray through the 1950s of Harburg and bring many memories of this time back to life.



An Angler from Harburg



Stadtmuseum Harburg, Museumsplatz 2, 21073 Hamburg

Die Ausstellung ist beendet


Fee: 6 Euro,
reduced 4 Euro, free admission up to age of 17 years



10:00 - 17:00 Uhr


10:00 - 17:00 Uhr


10:00 - 17:00 Uhr


10:00 - 17:00 Uhr


10:00 - 17:00 Uhr


10:00 - 17:00 Uhr