This is a reproduction of a historic postcard. Thank you Andre for this wonderful card.
When Kaiser Wilhelm II made it known in summer 1905 that he would be willing to have the traditional singing contest transferred permanently to Frankfurt as well as having the 11th German Gymnastics Festival held there three years later, the municipal authorities lost no time in taking action. At a meeting of town councillors, funds were allocated for a general architectural competition. The invitation to tender was issued in April 1906 and was won just one year later by Friedrich von Thiersch, who designed a 6,000 m², daylight-flooded hall, suitable for playing host to all manner of exhibitions, musical performances and other events.
Construction work began on 11 June 1907 and was supervised directly by Frankfurt City Council. Responsibility for marketing and operating the hall was given to ‘Ausstellungs- und Festhallen-Gesellschaft’ – known today as Messe Frankfurt. Exactly 13 months later in July 1908, the still-unplastered Festhalle hosted the opening ceremony for the 11th International German Gymnastics Festival. When the gymnasts had returned home, the construction was completed and officially opened on schedule.