The Saarland is a state in Germany. It is in the south west of the country and is called the Saarland. Since it has an area of 2,570 km2 (990 sq mi) and a population of 995,600, it's one of the smallest German states in both area and population. It's also the smallest state except for Bremen. Saarbrucken is the capital and largest city of the state. Neunkirchen and Saarlouis are two other cities in the state. Most of the land around Saarland is in the French department of Moselle (Grand Est) and the German state of Rhineland-Palatinate. It also has a small border with Luxembourg's canton of Remich, which is about 8 kilometres (5 miles) long.
It was set up in 1920 after World War I as the Territory of the Saar Basin, which was taken over and run by France as part of a League of Nations mandate. The heavily industrialised area was worth a lot of money because of its rich coal deposits and its location on the border between France and Germany. In 1935, Saarland was returned to Nazi Germany in a referendum on the state of the Saar. In 1946, the French military administration in Allied-occupied Germany set up the Saar Protectorate. This was done on February 16, 1946, after World War II. After the referendum on the Saar Statute in 1955, it became a state on January 1, 1957. Saarland had its own currency, the Saar franc, and postage stamps made just for the area until 1959.