Berlin's history is certainly part of its appeal. Some of that history is wonderful and some is quite the opposite. Its story had an inauspicious beginning but it led to great heights: residence of the kings of Prussia, capital of the German Empire, metropolis feted throughout the world in the 1920s, capital of the Third Reich, ruined city, front line in the Cold War, city of the famous Berlin Wall – and, now, once more capital of a united Germany and seat of government.
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This little, inconspicuous house, painted white, doesn't actually belong here. And yet it is there, in the middle of Berlin's district Wedding. The artist Ryan Mendoza has brought it from Detroit to Berlin. Threatened by demolition, it represents an important part of American history. At the end of the 1950s, the African-American civil rights activist Rosa Parks lived in this house. When the bus driver demanded her place, she remained seated.