Archives of Service Civil International – Ceresole Walking Tour – Sunday 22. August 2010

Ceresole Walking Tour – Sunday 22. August 2010

Your canons and machine guns do not defend me. They bother me. They suffocate me.Take them away, let me go and see these Germans. I am perfectly sure that over there I will find men, who are decent people, rather similar to us – when we and they are not beset by militaristic ravings.

The clandestine journeys of Pierre Ceresole, crossing the border from Switzerland into Germany in the years 1918, 1933, 1942 and 1944 were acts of a radical pacifist which still fascinate and irritate at the same time.

On the one hand Ceresole declared that he was seeking cooperation with the national voluntary work service in Germany (1933) on the other he protested against totalitarianism (“apotheosis of the state“) and Swiss governmental support of the Nazi regime (1942/44).

The commemoration of these gestures allows SCI to understand and reflect on the pacifist values of the movement in the early days. In his booklet about his 1933 trip to Germany, Ceresole extensively describes the aims of the SCI and its peace work and the attempts to persuade the Nazi authorities to allow international volunteers to take part in the state-run voluntary work service project in Germany, was an attempt to release the political tensions in Europe at that time. Furthermore the topic of crossing borders symbolizes international volunteering exchange, which is often a sticking point for voluntary projects in SCI nowadays.

The Walking Tour

The tour follows the trail of Ceresole in 1933. From the Swiss village of Schleitheim in the region of Schaffhausen Ceresole entered the forest and crossed the border into Germany. At border stone number 488 he crossed the border and went from there to Grimmelshofen and from there to Fützen. There he took the train to Stuttgart. The walking tour will take train to other direction to Weizen and Waldshut, where he has been arrested.

Date: Sunday, 22.August 2010, 10:00

Meeting Point: Schleitheim, Bus Stop “Gemeindehaus”

How to get there: Train to Schaffhausen, Bus 21 to Schleitheim

Walking Tour: Around 4 walk with breaks & information about the Ceresole trail.

Trail: Schleitheim – Swiss-German Border – Grimmelshofen – Fützen, Train 14:37 to Weizen – Waldshut arrival around 18:00

Bring with you: Walking shoes, Rain protection, food & beverages on the way.


  • Costs for the train Waldshut: arround EUR 20
  • Valid travel documents to cross the border
  • For accomodation close to Schleitheim contact