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Atlas Obscura Onkel Toms Hütte (Uncle Tom’s Cabin)

On the outskirts of Berlin, near the end of a subway line, an oddly-named neighborhood pays homage to a famous and flawed American abolitionist novel from 1852. When Harriet Beecher Stowe published Uncle Tom’s Cabin, a decade before the start of the Civil War, the novel sold as well as the Bible. It soon attracted a loyal following overseas, especially in England, where slavery had been abolished two decades earlier. 

The book was also translated into German in 1852, and it apparently made an impression. According to a history of Berlin subway stations, a local resident named Thomas opened a biergarten in the 1880s, on the edge of Grünewald forest. To help visitors stay dry, he built several huts that were apparently nicknamed “Tom’s cabins,” and they are said to have reminded visitors of the novel. The name spread to a nearby street, still called Onkel-Tom-Straße, and a local cinema, Onkel Tom Kino, that no longer exists.

Keep track of the places you have been, log in.
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Audio Guide
10.11km
Audio Guide
IRI THESys Walkshop on Urban Infrastructure
en
Brutalism 1970
12.81km
Dankeskirche
Atlas Obscura 2019
9.67km
Berlin Victory Column

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4.09km
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12.35km
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9.08km
Parish Hall 12 Apostles
Brutalism
12.48km
Technische Fachhochschule Berlin (today: Beuth Hochschule für Technik)
Brutalism 1956
6.44km
Church at Lietzensee
Atlas Obscura 2021
4.24km
Platform 17 Memorial

Discover Platform 17 Memorial in Berlin, Germany: This platform is now a memorial dedicated to those who were deported during the Holocaust.

Atlas Obscura 2013
7.77km
Das Schicksal Der (Fate of) Bravenleavanne

Discover Das Schicksal Der (Fate of) Bravenleavanne in Berlin, Germany: The site of good faith and good nature.

Brutalism
11.14km
Youth Center (today: Haus Zille)
Audio Guide 2013
10.5km
Audio Guide
Berlin – out to Potsdam, the Olympic Stadium and much more. Travelbook
en
Brutalism 1966
4.53km
Institute for Hygene and Microbiology (today: Institute for Hygene and Environmental Medicine), Freie Universität Berlin
Atlas Obscura 2020
1.45km
Alliierten Museum

Discover Alliierten Museum in Berlin, Germany: This museum is home to a sugar sculpture of the Berlin Airlift Memorial.

Atlas Obscura 2019
12.31km
‘Der Fall Daidalos und Ikaros’ (‘The Case of Daedalus and Icarus’)

Discover 'Der Fall Daidalos und Ikaros' ('The Case of Daedalus and Icarus') in Berlin, Germany: This curious sculpture represents the perseverance needed to take to the skies.

Brutalism 1957
13.68km
Rotaprint Administration Building
Atlas Obscura 2016
9.69km
Where the Conspirators That Tried to Kill Hitler Met Their Deaths

Discover The Bendlerblock in Berlin, Germany: After a nearly successful attempt on Hitler's life, the conspirators met their fate in the courtyard of this Berlin building.

Atlas Obscura 2016
10.48km
Spandauer Zitadelle (Spandau Citadel)

Discover Spandauer Zitadelle (Spandau Citadel) in Berlin, Germany: A 12th-century fortress containing some of Berlin's oldest buildings.

Atlas Obscura 2021
10.09km
Feuermelder

Discover Feuermelder in Berlin, Germany: A historic fire call point.

Brutalism
7.31km
St. Norbert
Brutalism
8.07km
Apartment Complex Uhlandstraße
Atlas Obscura 2018
10.75km
Berlin’s Massive Carillon

One of the world's heaviest musical instruments towers within the popular Tiergarten park.

Brutalism
9.91km
Post Office
Brutalism 1958
10.06km
Academy of Arts (Akademie der Künste)
Brutalism
10.43km
Mary Queen of Martyrs Church (Gedenkkirche Maria Regina Martyrum)
Brutalism 1956
6.69km
Corbusierhouse (Unité d’Habitation, type Berlin)
Atlas Obscura 2015
8.52km
The ‘Peacock Island’ of Berlin

Discover Pfaueninsel in Berlin, Germany: This Berlin island is home to a flock of free-roaming peacocks, as well as a historic ivory folly.

Atlas Obscura 2016
9.69km
Where the Conspirators That Tried to Kill Hitler Met Their Deaths

Discover The Bendlerblock in Berlin, Germany: After a nearly successful attempt on Hitler's life, the conspirators met their fate in the courtyard of this Berlin building.

Atlas Obscura 2009
8.38km
Bahnhof Berlin Zoologischer Garten

Discover Bahnhof Berlin Zoologischer Garten in Berlin, Germany: Metro station with a claim to rock n' roll fame.

Brutalism 1962
8.52km
Department of architecture, Technische Universität Berlin
Atlas Obscura 2012
5.01km
The Bierpinsel

Discover The Bierpinsel in Berlin, Germany: A tree-like building perches on its trunk in the Steglitz neighborhood of Berlin.

Atlas Obscura 2012
3.59km
Berlin Botanical Garden

Discover Berlin Botanical Garden in Berlin, Germany: Started as a kitchen garden, now the second largest botanical garden in the world.

Atlas Obscura 2016
6.5km
Fliegeberg

Discover Fliegeberg in Berlin, Germany: This conical hill was built as a testing ground for an engineer known as the Glider King.

Atlas Obscura 2013
11.77km
Berliner Medizinhistorisches Museum

Discover Berliner Medizinhistorisches Museum in Berlin, Germany: Home to 10,000 medical specimens including the remains of Rudolf Virchow's extensive collection of pathological specimens.

Atlas Obscura 2009
6.32km
Berlin Radio Tower

Discover Berlin Radio Tower in Berlin, Germany: A restaurant and observation deck built in a unique broadcasting antenna.

Brutalism
7.79km
Haus Plettner
Atlas Obscura 2018
9.93km
Museum of Rescued Letters

Discover Buchstabenmuseum in Berlin, Germany: A collection of abandoned typographic signs from Berlin and beyond.

Atlas Obscura 2012
5.01km
The Bierpinsel

Discover The Bierpinsel in Berlin, Germany: A tree-like building perches on its trunk in the Steglitz neighborhood of Berlin.

Atlas Obscura 2016
5.21km
Teufelsberg

Discover Teufelsberg in Berlin, Germany: An abandoned NSA listening post on Berlin's "Devil's Mountain.".

Brutalism
3.88km
Residential House Hohenzollerndamm 86
Atlas Obscura 2019
7.87km
Schöneberg Gasometer

Discover Schöneberg Gasometer in Berlin, Germany: The skeletal frame of a decommissioned gas-pumping station offers breathtaking views of greater Berlin.

Atlas Obscura 2009
8.85km
Schwerbelastungskörper

Discover Schwerbelastungskörper in Berlin, Germany: Super-heavy Nazi architectural experiment.

Atlas Obscura 2016
7.28km
Freedom Bell

Discover Freedom Bell in Berlin, Germany: A replica of the Liberty Bell rang daily from West Berlin's City Hall throughout the Cold War.

Atlas Obscura 2018
9.65km
The ‘Hand with Watch’ Sculpture

Discover The 'Hand with Watch' Sculpture in Berlin, Germany: Known simply as "The Hand," this famous public sculpture in Berlin was featured in a Depeche Mode music video.

Atlas Obscura 2011
8.44km
The Frame Collector’s Museum

Discover The Frame Collector's Museum in Berlin, Germany: Antique frame collection with 2,400 frames.

Atlas Obscura 2016
2.63km
Dahlem-Dorf U-Bahn Station Benches

Discover Dahlem-Dorf U-Bahn Station Benches in Berlin, Germany: A traditional U-Bahn station in Berlin gets a string of rather untraditional benches.

Atlas Obscura 2017
8.23km
Berlin’s Museum of Unheard of Things

Discover Museum of Unheard of Things in Berlin, Germany: A wunderkammer of mysterious objects and stories.

Atlas Obscura 2013
8.43km
Mengenlehreuhr

Discover Mengenlehreuhr in Berlin, Germany: The world's first clock to use set theory as a measure of time required the invention of a new light bulb just to maintain its obtuse measurements.

Atlas Obscura 2020
7.55km
Luisenfriedhof II

Discover Luisenfriedhof II in Berlin, Germany: One of the oldest cemeteries in Germany was originally used for victims of a cholera epidemic.

Atlas Obscura 2016
7.34km
Wir Waren Nachbarn (We Were Neighbors)

Discover Wir Waren Nachbarn (We Were Neighbors) in Berlin, Germany: A unique Holocaust memorial tells the personal stories of the Jewish residents exiled from greater Berlin.

Atlas Obscura 2017
9.79km
‘Stand By Me’ Tree

Discover 'Stand By Me' Tree in Berlin, Germany: Someone loved this song enough to carve all of its lyrics onto a tree trunk in a Berlin park.

Atlas Obscura 2021
9.95km
Classic Remise

Discover Classic Remise in Berlin, Germany: An old tram depot transformed into a vintage car paradise.

Brutalism
8.95km
Church of the Assumption of Mary (Kirche Mariä Himmelfahrt) (today: Mor-Afrem Church)
Brutalism
8.73km
Bürohaus An der Urania (today: Landeszentrale für politische Bildung)
Atlas Obscura 2021
13.09km
Silent Green Kulturquartier

Discover Silent Green Kulturquartier in Berlin, Germany: Concerts, art, offices, and a café in what used to be Berlin's first crematorium.

Atlas Obscura 2012
6.21km
Propeller Island City Lodge

Discover Propeller Island City Lodge in Berlin, Germany: Come stay at a live-in art installation.

Brutalism
9.03km
Parking Garage and Apartment Complex Kirchbachstraße 1 & 2
Audio Guide
13.43km
Audio Guide
Colonial Traces – The African Quarter in Berlin-Wedding
en
Atlas Obscura 2021
8.22km
Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church

Discover Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church in Berlin, Germany: An imperial church bombed to ruins during WWII now stands as a jagged memorial.

Brutalism
4.58km
Central Animal Labs “Mouse Bunker”, Freie Universität Berlin (Zentrale Tierlaboratorien “Mäusebunker”)
Brutalism 1968
12.71km
Schering Headquarters