Sunday will be the 25th anniversary of the opening of the Berlin Wall, which began the reunification of Germany. For decades, people on the East German side were desperate to get across to West Germany and freedom from Communist rule. Many risked their lives to cross the border, and some came up with ingenious ways to do it.
East German acrobat Horst Klein made one of the most daring escapes over the wall in early 1963. Thanks to his acrobatic skill, Klein was able to turn an unused high-tension cable that stretched over the wall into his route. He moved hand-over-hand while dangling from the cable 60 feet over the head of patrolling guards, then when his arms became fatigued, he swung his whole body up over the cable and inched his way along. Klein’s dismount wasn’t particularly graceful – he fell off of the cable – but he landed in West Berlin.
Every escape that was detected led to more security, and crossing from East to West became more difficult as time went by. Read about seven other methods used to cross the Berlin Wall at mental_floss.