The state contract between the Free States of Coburg and Bavaria documents a historical turning point. During the course of the Revolution of 1918, Duke Carl Eduard of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha (r. 1900-1918) abdicated as German imperial prince. Almost 90 percent of the electorate in the Free State of Coburg voted at the end of November 1919 by national referendum for the unification with Bavaria. After over two weeks of negotiations, the authorities of both states concluded a contract, which the representatives of the Free State of Coburg still sealed with the old seal of state of the Duchy of Saxe-Coburg. After the Bavarian regional parliament and the Coburg parliament (the so-called “Landesversammlung”) had come to an agreement and after an imperial law had been decreed, the unification became valid on 1 July 1920. The contract became, thanks to sustainably effective special regulations, part of the modern Coburg self-awareness. For the first time in German history, a territory had decided freely, based on the right of self-determination, in favour of the unification with another state. The copy of the still-valid contract destined for the Free State of Coburg is preserved in the Staatsarchiv (State Archive) Coburg.
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