- Kiel is a city of northern Germany located on the eastern exit of the Kaiser‑Wilhelm-Kanal; it was a principal naval base of the German Empire. Formerly part of the duchy of Holstein, Kiel became part of Prussia as a result of the Seven Weeks’ War in 1866. Provided by nature with an excellent harbor, the small town on the Baltic was the ideal site for a maritime base. Already in 1865, the Prussian navy was moved from Danzig to Kiel and before long, shipbuilding developed into Kiel’s major industry. Later the city also became the base for the empire’s submarines, together with Wilhelmshaven. As a consequence, the city’s population increased 10-fold from 16,000 to 160,000 between 1855 and 1905. It rose by another 50 percent between 1905 and 1914, the high tide of the naval arms race.During the last days of World War I, Kiel witnessed a major mutiny by navy crews. The mutiny started after a number of stokers had been detained because of their refusal to put to sea. In a reaction to this, marines and sailors held meetings and demanded the release of the prisoners. On November 3, 1918, 3,000 demonstrators clashed violently with loyal troops and one day later a soldier’s council was formed and the Communist flag hoisted from the Kiel town hall. After Kaiser Wilhelm II’s abdication, however, the uprising soon collapsed.See also <
>; < >.FURTHER READING:Dähnhardt, Dirk. Revolution in Kiel: Der Übergang vom Kaiserreich zur Weimarer Republik 1918/19 . Neumünster: Wachholtz, 1978;Wenzel, Rüdiger. Bevölkerung, Wirtschaft und Politik im kaiserlichen Kiel zwischen 1870 und 1914 . Kiel: Gesellschaft für Kieler Stadtgeschichte, 1978.ULRICH SCHNAKENBERG
Encyclopedia of the Age of Imperialism, 1800–1914. 2014.