John Rabe House

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John Rabe's former residence in Nanking (as it was then called when he lived there), July 2008

The John Rabe House (拉贝故居), located at Xiaofenqiao No. 1 (小粉桥1号) in Nanjing, was where John Rabe, former Siemens China Representative and Chairman of the International Committee for the Nanking Safety Zone, resided from 1932 to 1938. Today it accommodates the “John Rabe and International Safety Zone Memorial Hall” and the “John Rabe Research and Exchange Centre for Peace and Reconciliation.”

The John Rabe House is located in the center of Nanjing, on the campus of Nanjing University. John Rabe stayed here during the Nanking Massacre and protected more than 600 Chinese refugees in this house, and within its garden, from Japanese persecution. It was also in this house where he wrote the famous “Diaries of John Rabe

For almost half a century, Rabe's former residence in Nanking (as it then was) received little recognition until its location was publicized by the publication of Rabe's diaries in December 1996 by his granddaughter Ursula Reinhardt. When German president Johannes Rau visited Nanjing University in 2003, he expressed concern about the dilapidated condition of John Rabe’s former residence. After Rau’s visit and with his great encouragement to renovate the house, the project kicked off successfully in 2005. The Consulate General of the Federal Republic of Germany in Shanghai, together with Siemens Ltd. China, Bosch-Siemens Home Appliances signed an agreement with Nanjing University to renovate the house and construct the “The John Rabe and International Safety Zone Memorial Hall” and “John Rabe Research and Exchange Centre for Peace and Reconciliation.” The German side was to provide financing while Nanjing University was responsible for the renovation and maintenance of the John Rabe House as well as for the establishment and management of the Memorial Hall and Research Center.

John Rabe and International Safety Zone Memorial Hall[edit]

On October 31, 2006, the “John Rabe and International Safety Zone Memorial Hall” officially opened to the public. On 1628 square meters, 6 exhibition areas, more than 300 photographs, files and historical material tell Rabe’s life story. It’s main focus is to commemorate the heroic efforts of John Rabe and the other members of the Nanking Safety Zone, to save innocent lives during the Nanking Massacre. The Memorial Hall in Rabe’s former residence can be visited Monday – Friday from 8:30 to 16:30. Since 2008 the Austrian Service Abroad sends a Peace Servant to work at the Memorial Hall and Exchange Center every year.

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Coordinates: 32°03′02″N 118°47′00″E / 32.05056°N 118.78333°E / 32.05056; 118.78333