An American Red Cross worker is snugly sandwiched between two soldiers in a requisitioned vehicle, as a Berlin traffic policeman directs them during a sightseeing tour.
These hungry little tots are lined up for hot soup at one of the many Berlin soup kitchens. The feeding program began in November 1945, just months after WWII ended, seeking to aid the diet deficiencies incurred by the kids.
The caption on this next National Geographic image read Berlin Still Has Sidewalk Cafes, But Little Gayety. The glum faces in this British occupation zone belie the fact that it was, in fact, Easter. This wide strip of the Kurfürstendamm, the famous avenue in Berlin, was once well-known for shops, cabarets, cafes, and dance halls. Here, patrons drink imitation fruit juices and “ersatz” coffee, as there was no access to fine wines and liqueurs of yore.
For a larger dose of fun and frolic, Allied-victorious American soldiers made the six hour trek south of Berlin to Garmisch-Partenkirchen, where they spent hours on the slopes.
Just over a year after Japan surrendered to the Allied Forces, signifying the end of WWII, much of Germany lay devastated. Potsdam Square, the Times Square of Berlin, was ashes. One of the few places left undestroyed was the Cafe Wien, jammed with Germans of all ages, drinking what LIFE described as “weak drinks, which are all the cafe can offer.” This fashionable lady, sitting on the once-fashionable avenue of Kurfürstendamm, doesn’t seem to mind.
No, this tropically-clad lady isn’t Carmen Miranda; she’s a guest enjoying the Chicago Art Guild’s annual Green Moth Ball. The ball had been all but suspended during the war years, and now was being revived by 600 guests at Chicago’s Continental Hotel.
Evidently the conga line grew and the liquor flowed until the official end time of 4:30am. As Life put it, “A few guests at this rowdy party could always be counted on to land in jail before the festivities were over.” And who could blame them? It was November 30, 1945, the war was over, Hitler was dead, and the holiday season was upon them. If there ever was a time to celebrate, it was then!