For those of you who don't know me, I'm one of the regulars on Watching Wyrd and I visit unusual locations for Wyrd News. Every other week, I post photos of some of the sites I've visited. Back in 2013, my wife and I honeymooned in Germany. One of the locations we visited was Wewelsburg Castle in Germany.
Wewelsburg Castle in Westphalia was the location chosen by SS Reichsfuhrer Heinrich Himmler to be the center of the SS occult activities. The castle was constructed in the early 17th century but eventually fell into disrepair in the 18th and 19th centuries. In 1924, Wewelsburg became the property of the local district, which turned it into a cultural center and began renovations that fell off after a few years. Himmler leased the castle in 1934 with the intention of converting into a center of SS ideology and research. One of the fields of research that was followed was the occult.
The focal point of the castle's occult studies was the North Tower. On the ground level (just inside the doorway) is the Obergruppenfuhrersall, which referred to the original twelve highest ranking SS officers (obergruppenfuhrers). The Obergruppenfuhrersall contains the Black Sun, a dark green sun wheel built into the marble floor. Himmler envisioned this tower as the center of his SS and Germanic empire. This room also gave credence to the unsubstantiated legend that Himmler was hoping to develop a Grail castle with his own dark version of the Knights of the Round Table. In the basement is the Vault, a former cistern that was converted into some type of commemoration room with a sunken center; twelve pedestals, each with its own wall niche, placed around the perimeter wall; and the Black Sun centered in the ceiling. Himmler never divulged what the Vault would be used for.
This is the Vault. You can see the sunken floor and some of the pedestals between the paintings (the paintings were added by the museum to detract from the eerie aspects of the room). The reason this picture is so poor is because I had to take it covertly since photography is not allowed in this portion of the castle (like that's going to stop me). The photo on the bottom is how the Vault originally looked.
This is one of the original twelve chairs emblazoned with SS runes from the Obergruppenfuhrersall. Below that is a close-up of the SS runes on the chair. These are the only known artifacts from the castle still in existence.