While one Knight Henricus of Steglitz was already mentioned in an 1197 deed, the village of Steglitz was first mentioned in the 1375 Landbuch of Emperor Charles IV, at this time also ruler of the Brandenburg Electorate.
Steglitz witnessed the construction of the first paved Prussian country road, in 1792. The former village profited largely from its location on the Imperial Highway Reichsstraße 1, today Bundesstraße 1, which follows a trading route that dates back to the Middle Ages. The old Reichsstraße stretched from the far West of Germany through Aachen and Cologne to Berlin, then continued on eastward to end some two hundred miles northeast of Königsberg in East Prussia. The village of Steglitz was also boosted significantly with the construction of the Stammbahn line of the Prussian state railways in 1838. This was the first railroad in Prussia and ran between Berlin and Potsdam. The Steglitz area was included in the southern line of Berlin’s rail and transit systems from around 1850.
The southwestern surroundings of Berlin saw considerable change in the second half of the 19th century when luxurious residential areas were developed in the neighboring villages of Lichterfelde and later Dahlem. Lichterfelde West and East, founded by the entrepreneur Johann von Carstenn were developed as so called Villenkolonien, settlements made up entirely of mansions or villas. In the east the settlement of Südende (South End) was founded in 1873. In Steglitz proper a major shopping area developed around the Schloßstraße, catering also to the wealthy villages of Lichterfelde and Dahlem. In 1901 the first Wandervogel youth group was founded in the basement of the Steglitz town hall.
Steglitz was incorporated into the city of Greater Berlin in 1920 together with neighboring villages. From 1920 to 2000 the administrative district IX was called Bezirk Steglitz. During the time of the Berlin Wall Steglitz formed part of the American Sector. In Berlin’s 2001 administrative reform the Berlin southwestern area was united in the newly created borough of Steglitz-Zehlendorf, with its expensive residential developments today the most affluent of the twelve Berlin boroughs.
- Steglitz town hall, erected in 1898