A brief history of the Bundesliga
(Click on 'The Bundesliga FAQ' for an index of the 2-monthly updates)
This is a part of of  THE BUNDESLIGA FAQ

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Bundesliga history questions treated
more questions to be added in the future

when was Bundesliga born and who are the top established teams?
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It was 1963 that the Bundesliga was formed. Before the top divisions were divided into regional groups. In the long term at least some of those regional top leagues did not have enough strong teams to be challenge enough for the giants. The installation of Bundesliga is said to have brought a lift of competitiveness for German football on the international level. As European competitions had just begun, this of course is difficult to prove.

The most successful teams before the second world war (until 1939) had been 1.FC Nürnberg, Schalke 04 (each 6 championships), Hertha BSC Berlin, Spvgg. Fürth, Hamburger SV, and, before the first world war, VfB Leipzig. Other prominent names were also already on the scene (Fortuna Düsseldorf, Hannover 96, Bayern Munich, Munich 1860, Karlsruhe, VfB Stuttgart, Eintracht Frankfurt).

After the second world war and until 1989 (in football until 1991), Germany was divided into an Eastern part (German Democratic Republic) and the rest (Federal Republic Of Germany). 

The Eastern part with its 'Oberliga' saw its most prominent teams in Dynamo Dresden and Dynamo Berlin (today FC Berlin). After the reunion those clubs without experience in the football business and without competence and financial ressources were quickly robbed of their talents (among them players like Sammer, Kirsten) and ruined by dubious adventurers. Today the Eastern clubs are almost erased from the map of professional football. Energie Cottbus and Hansa Rostock are the only clubs left among the 36 teams of the first two divisions (Bundesliga and 2nd Bundesliga). While all other clubs try to recover in the regionally divided 3rd division, the well educated Eastern player reservoir has been exploited by the Western clubs.

In the Western part new powers emerged to add their names to the prominents list: Among them 1.FC Kaiserslautern, Borussia Dortmund, and 1.FC Köln. The championship was played out among the top teams of the regional groups and each year had a final. This system produced a considerable number of equally strong names whereas the Bundesliga today produced a structure with a dominant power (Bayern) (and a temporary counterpart) and the other clubs distributed over several levels. An evidence for the theory that a league might tend to easierly produce few-team-dominating structures: In 60 years there had been no title hattrick (3 in a row), in 35 years Bundesliga there have been 3. 

The Bundesliga 1963 was formed by granting licenses to 16 teams. All regions should be represented and this meant a 'no' for some clubs who were located in the same area as a club that already had been licened. For instance from Munich it had been Munich 1860, not Bayern Munich. Two years later the number of teams was increased to 18.

There is only 1 team left that has been in Bunbdesliga all the years: Hamburger SV.
The following clubs have been in Bundesliga all the years and only absend 2 or less years:
Werder Bremen, 1.FC Kaiserslautern, VfB Stuttgart, Eintracht Frankfurt (all 1963 beginners)
1.FC Köln (Cologne) (in Bundesliga from 1963 to 1998, now fighting in 2nd Bundesliga for repromotion)
Bayern Munich, Borussia Mönchengladbach (in Bundesliga since 1965).
Borussia Dortmund had been among the 1963 formers and absent for 4 consecutive years in the 1970s.

Other prominent names seem to have now rebuild their structures but had temporarily been several times relegated (Schalke 04) and even had dropped to 3rd division (Hertha BSC Berlin, 1.FC Nürnberg, Munich 1860). 
Also 1963 beginner is MSV Duisburg who also temporarily disappeared in the 3rd division but came back. They are a smaller club than the before mentioned and in the shadow of the more flamboyant clubs of the same region (Schalke, Dortmund). The same can be said for VfL Bochum who have been there since 1971 and also temporarily absend.
Bayer Leverkusen has been in Bundesliga since 1979, Wolfsburg and Freiburg are names of the 90's. Hansa Rostock had been an established name in East Germany but not one of the big ones.

The most succesful clubs since birth of Bundesliga 1963: 
Bayern Munich (13 championships) 
Borussia Mönchengladbach (5 championships)
Hamburger SV, Werder Bremen (3 championships)
1.FC Köln, 1.FC Kaiserslautern, VfB Stuttgart, Borussia Dortmund (2 championships)
Munich 1860, 1.FC Nürnberg, Eintracht Braunschweig (1 championship)
Eintracht Braunschweig is the only team that does not play in Bundesliga today. They are fighting for promotion from 3rd division to 2nd Bundesliga.
Bayern Munich is the only club that has been able to convert a dominance of a team of a particular era into long term success producing structures. Whereas Bremen, Mönchengladbach, Hamburger SV, and perharps Borussia Dortmund (much too early to say) had only eras that were connected with an extra-ordinary constellation, Bayern has been equally dominating in the last 3 decades with its counterparts altering.

is there a book on the history of Bundesliga in English?
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There is a very good book in narrative style on the history of German football and thus covering Bundesliga history as well.

More about it here

where can I find all Bundesliga tables and stats?
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Experience has shown that RSSSF is the most reliable and consistent source on the web, run by a community with enthusiasm for football and results.

Sources that had all Bundesliga data, including teams and scorers for each week since 1963 were shortliving and have disappeared again.
The magazin kicker has data for some years back but only in German while the official Bundesliga website might have once in the future