Never-before-seen Hitler photos up for auction

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14.03.2017

New Hitler photos on auction

A photo album of never before seen photos of the German dictator will go up for auction on Wednesday. Many of the photos in the album were personal and would not have been published during his rule.

A photo album of a more relaxed Adolf Hitler will go up for auction in Kent, England on Wednesday. The album will feature photos that have never seen the light of way, exactly how Hitler intended.

"Hitler's image, particularly his photographs, were controlled. They had to be approved," said C&T Auctions consultant Tim Harper.

The men who led Nazi Germany

Joseph Goebbels (1897-1945)

As Hitler's Propaganda Minister, the virulently anti-Semitic Goebbels was responsible for making sure a single, iron-clad Nazi message reached every citizen of the Third Reich. He strangled freedom of the press, controlled all media, arts, and information, and pushed Hitler to declare "Total War." He and his wife committed suicide in 1945, after poisoning their six children.

The men who led Nazi Germany

Adolf Hitler (1889-1945)

The leader of the German National Socialist Workers' Party (Nazi) developed his anti-Semitic, anti-communist and racist ideology well before coming to power as Chancellor in 1933. He undermined political institutions to transform Germany into a totalitarian state. From 1939 to 1945, he led Germany in World War II while overseeing the Holocaust. He committed suicide in April 1945.

The men who led Nazi Germany

Heinrich Himmler (1900-1945)

As leader of the Nazi paramilitary SS ("Schutzstaffel"), Himmler was one of the Nazi party members most directly responsible for the Holocaust. He also served as Chief of Police and Minister of the Interior, thereby controlling all of the Third Reich's security forces. He oversaw the construction and operations of all extermination camps, in which more than 6 million Jews were murdered.

The men who led Nazi Germany

Rudolf Hess (1894-1987)

Hess joined the Nazi party in 1920 and took part in the 1923 Beer Hall Putsch, a failed Nazi attempt to gain power. While in prison, he helped Hitler write "Mein Kampf." Hess flew to Scotland in 1941 to attempt a peace negotiation, where he was arrested and held until the war's end. In 1946, he stood trial in Nuremberg and was sentenced to life in prison, where he died.

The men who led Nazi Germany

Adolf Eichmann (1906-1962)

Alongside Himmler, Eichmann was one of the chief organizers of the Holocaust. As an SS Lieutenant colonel, he managed the mass deportations of Jews to Nazi extermination camps in Eastern Europe. After Germany's defeat, Eichmann fled to Austria and then to Argentina, where he was captured by the Israeli Mossad in 1960. Tried and found guilty of crimes against humanity, he was executed in 1962.

The men who led Nazi Germany

Hermann Göring (1893-1946)

A participant in the failed Beer Hall Putsch, Göring became the second-most powerful man in Germany once the Nazis took power. He founded the Gestapo, the Secret State Police, and served as Luftwaffe commander until just before the war's end, though he increasingly lost favor with Hitler. Göring was sentenced to death at Nuremberg but committed suicide the night before it was enacted.

Harper said the photos show Hitler more "natural, relaxed, a number of them are amusing and almost certainly they would not have been allowed to be published. They are quite revealing," according to Harper.

The album also contains photos of Hitler in his motorcade passing crowds of people cheering him, smiling next to a group of children, and alongside top members of the Nazi party including Joseph Goebbels and Heinrich Himmler. The photos "had to be taken by someone who had clearance to get close to the Fuehrer and close to that inner circle," said Harper.

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The photo album was found by English photographer Edward Dean and English broadcaster Richard Dimbleby in Hitler's bunker in April 1945. Harper said Dean and Dimbleby were with a Russian soldier and they broke into Eva Braun's bedroom. "The Russian solder pried open her drawer and got the album from there," said Harper.

The album is currently owned by an unnamed collector. The album could fetch more than 15,000 British pounds (17,200 euros, $18,300). A telephone apparently owned by Hitler sold for $240,000 at an auction earlier this year. 

kbd/bw (Reuters)