Hitler's study

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Potsdamerplatz
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Hitler's study

Post by Potsdamerplatz » 16 Aug 2007 23:41

Enjoy this photograph of Hitler's study in the Neue Reichskanzlei:

Image

Hitler's desk was restored post-war and today is on display in the Deutsches Historisches Museum along with his globe:

Image Image

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SteveFBS
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Post by SteveFBS » 17 Aug 2007 02:02

From what I had read the actual desk had been smashed by Soviet troops. I have seen broken inlay panels from the desk and one of the removed knobs from a drawer for sale. Is this restoration done with period pieces or is the whole thing a new reproduction? I notice the guy looking at the desk is wearing a jacket in a very familiar shade of brown. Very interesting.

-Steven

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Von Odine
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Post by Von Odine » 17 Aug 2007 04:39

My guess is they are the reproductions made for the film "Speer und Ihr", (or duplicates made in 1939 and stored elsewhere?) BTW, the "Story of Berlin Museum" has a large model of the Domed Hall.. is this one of the originals, a film prop or was it made just for their exhibit?

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I B Piper
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Post by I B Piper » 17 Aug 2007 11:20

Here's a picture of a piece of Hitler's desk that's at the Regimental Museum, Ft. George, near Inverness, Scotland. It's consistent with the story that the actual desk was broken up for souveniers.

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I B Piper
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Potsdamerplatz
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Post by Potsdamerplatz » 17 Aug 2007 12:20

Dear fellow researchers ~

I believe the desk on display in the Zeughaus is Hitler's desk from his study at the Berghof which is identical to the one in the Berlin Chancellery.

This article would seem to confirm my suspicions:


Adolf Hitler: my hunt for his furniture

3rd December 2000
article by Imre Karacs (reproduced from the Independent on Sunday)

KLAUS BEETZ is a very nice man who works for the German Finance Ministry and needs help shifting some period furniture. He has tried the German Historical Museum in Berlin, but they said no, as did all the provincial museums he has approached. So, can anybody out there spare room for Adolf Hitler's desk, his conference table, a sideboard and a few chairs?

They are unwanted gifts. The furnishings of the "Second Reichskanzelei" in Berchtesgaden, Hitler's retreat in the Bavarian Alps, fell into the hands of the US army at the end of the Second World War. In 1996, the US government wanted to show its magnanimity by handing some of the loot back to Germany. "It was a completely new situation," Mr Beetz recalls. "We said, `My God, what are we going to do with all this stuff?'"

Four years on, the Independent on Sunday can reveal the answer: not a great deal. There are plenty of collectors of Hitler memorabilia abroad who would love to give the furniture a home, even if German museums do not want it, but the German government would commit political suicide if it was seen to be making money this way. Why not simply burn the stuff? No chance: an international treaty forbids it.

I contacted Chris Farlowe, who was highly excited to learn of my discovery. A 1960s pop star whose biggest hit was Out of Time, he used to run a shop selling Third Reich memorabilia in Islington, north London. "It's got to go into the right auctions," Mr Farlowe said. "It's got to go to England. You're talking about tens of thousands of Auction houses such as Sotheby's told me they would not deal in the personal belongings of Hitler or his henchmen, and the law forbids their sale in Germany or France, but that was no problem for Mr Farlowe. "If you could put it into a van, you could get it across the Channel, no hassle," he advised. "I could put you in touch with a really rich friend who could sell it, no trouble. He's got a chair from the Reich Chancellery. It's lovely, it's got a great big eagle and swastika on the back. Has yours got that?"

Sorry Chris, no: "If I didn't say that the chairs came from the Reichskanzelei, then they would be completely worthless," said Mr Beetz. The truth is that although Hitler fancied himself as an artist, he had no taste. The sad collection of his furniture, tucked away in the side rooms of a decaying conference centre in east Berlin, looks like the pickings of a house-clearance merchant in a not particularly prosperous district. The table, chairs and leather armchairs were designed to fit in with the Nazi architectural concept of Berchtesgaden, as laid down by Albert Speer. The result is bastardised Bauhaus - neo-classical simplicity smothered by rustic upholstery.

I tracked down Adolf's belongings to the centre, now an annexe of the "Federal Agency for Radiation Protection", at the end of a bumpy dirt track among allotments in east Berlin. I needed written permission from the Finance Ministry to view what the German public is not allowed to see.

Mr Beetz met me on the steps of the Communist-era building, all mock marble and futuristic light fittings straight out of a low- budget science fiction movie. Its inaccessibility and lack of modern facilities means it is now no use for anything but storage. The main hall floor was covered with a pile of Persian carpets. Experts from all kinds of museums came and went, looking for anything useful for their exhibits, but no one bothered with the apparent junk in two rooms off one of the corridors. The curtains were drawn, the heat turned down.

Not all of the furniture is in mint condition. The desk in the second room still bears a label of its previous owners. "This item is the property of the United States and is reportable under the Potsdam Agreement," it states. "Catalogue number 1995-65.72".

For 50 years the Americans used Berchtesgaden as an officers' club. Then some of the furniture was packed off to Wash- ington, only to be sent back to the supposedly grateful German people. What they didn't get ended up at the offices of the US Chief of Staff in Heidelberg. They are holding on to a few paintings and the coffee table around which the Fuhrer met Neville Chamberlain. And during the Kosovo campaign they were still using the original globe on which Hitler looked up the countries he was about to invade. It might explain how the Americans ended up bombing the Chinese embassy in Belgrade by mistake.

The US period is all too evident on the furniture now in Berlin. "The Americans were rather disrespectful," Mr Beetz said indignantly. "Look at those cigarette burns. Hitler, of course, was a non- smoker." Yet there they are, six little holes piercing the desk's imitation leather covering. Someone has also bolted a telephone socket onto the side of the precious furniture.

But it is unlikely that a demand for reparations will be winging its way to Washington. The German government dare not exhibit this piece of history, lest it should unwittingly create a shrine to Nazism. No- where in Germany can personal items belonging to leaders of the Third Reich be seen.

What about selling it off? Germany's Holocaust Foundation is nearly DM1bn (over pounds 300m) short of what is needed to pay off former slave workers. A nice idea, Mr Beetz concedes, but impracticable. "I think - and please make clear this is my personal opinion, not government policy - that the ideological and political damage would be considerably greater than the few marks we would make out of it."

Mr Beetz, in any case, is not interested in this kind of solution, not yet. "Time heals," he said. "Maybe in 10 years we'll see things differently."



The Deutsches Historisches Museum on Unter den Linden was refurbised 5 years ago and a new annex was added. It is probable that they changed their minds and decided to display the items after all. Especially as German opinion on Third Reich history has mellowed in the past 7 years since the above article was written. Ten years ago an information board for tourists at the site of the Fuhrerbunker would have been unthinkable!!!

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sobel
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Post by sobel » 17 Aug 2007 13:54

Interesting article Potsdamerplatz

regards

Sobel

Potsdamerplatz
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Post by Potsdamerplatz » 17 Aug 2007 15:09

Russian soldiers pose with the globe which was found in the study of the Chancellery.

Image

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Potsdamerplatz
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Post by Potsdamerplatz » 17 Aug 2007 15:27

Here is an eyewitness account of an Australian soldier who visited Hitler's study in November 1945.

A Visit To Hitler's Study

Neal Carter was stationed in Germany with RAAF 451 Squadron, British Occupation Forces, in November 1945.

He was stationed at Wunstorf, a former German night fighter base about which the Allies knew nothing before the war ended. It had been built to defend the city of Hannover but failed to do so. Hannover became known as "The City of Walls" after the heavy Allied bombing raids.

Neal Carter was part of an advance party to Berlin, finally arriving at Gatow Air Base where he was involved in the aircraft armament maintenance program for the Spitfires of 451 Squadron.

He managed to see a fair bit of Berlin during his stay, including the 1936 Olympic Games stadium, the Tiergarten Forest which had been virtually destroyed in the search for firewood, the Russian War Memorial and the Brandenburg Gate.

But the highlight was a visit to Hitler's study. He was there with a colleague and after taking a photograph of the Chancellery courtyard, was approached by a British army officer.

"He asked if we were interested in inspecting Hitler's study, stating that he had a pass for twelve persons and an extra two would never be noticed by the Russian soldiers. Naturally, we jumped at the chance and joined the group," Neal Carter recalled.

"From the office in the courtyard we were escorted by two armed Russian guards, one leading, the other at the rear, and both at the ready. We had to walk past other offices to reach the main stone entrance steps to the Chancellery but unfortunately were unable to see whether or not they were occupied or in use.

"To our left, in one section of the courtyard, between a wall and the massive four columns which dominated the front stood the skeletal remains of a German scout car, just one of the many that would have once filled the area. Then up the steps to a long porch where a metal reminder of the Nazi regime, the German eagle and the swastika now lay to one side of the entrance where it had been blown from its original position directly above the main doors.

"The Russian guard pushed open the right hand side of the huge pair of wooden doors and we were in the foyer. Our attention was immediately drawn to a large hole in the timber flooring and around which we had to carefully skirt, a hole apparently made by a bomb which had crashed through the roof above, through the floor and into the basement where it lay, unexploded at the time.

"Then we were guided along a narrow bare boarded floor passage to another wooden door, this time a single. Again the guard opened it and we were in what we were told had been Hitler's study.

"It was a room roughly twenty foot square, bare of all furniture, with ceilings approximately fifteen feet high. Apart from the way we had entered, the only other exit was through double French doors which opened onto a concrete wall. Strangely, the glass in these doors was still intact.

"Inside and opposite these doors was a fireplace with a mantel, not big, being only the size of a normal domestic style fireplace. The floors here were also wooden and littered with broken wall tiles, which, in my memory, were a fawn-brown colour, some still clinging to the walls.

"Two glass chandeliers hung overhead, most of the glass shattered, slivers mingling with the smashed pieces of tile. These were broken either by bomb vibrations or by the Russian troops.

"While we wandered around looking and wondering, one guard stood at the French doors, the other at the entrance but both watched our every move.

"It was a strange sensation being in that room, the place where so many decisions would have been made. There was excitement mingled with disappointment that there had been nothing left for us to see, no tangible evidence of the man who had spent so much time there.

"We saw the debris, the results of war and man's destruction, the only remaining symbol being that ignored eagle with its Nazi swastika that had been lying discarded outside. So much had been removed and yet this had been left. I couldn't help but wonder why.

"Once outside and in the street, I approached the British army officer and thanked him for allowing us to join his group and so enabling us to go on the inspection. He agreed it had been extremely interesting and then laughed heartily as he cheerfully informed us that it had all been carried out on a forged entry pass.

"We could well have done without that disturbing piece of news and with youthful imagination visualised being arrested and sent to Siberia!

"So the visit to the Chancellery was an experience that I have never forgotten."



http://www.australiansatwar.gov.au/stor ... r=W2&id=16

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Potsdamerplatz
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Post by Potsdamerplatz » 17 Aug 2007 16:06

More photographs of Hitler's study:

Image Image

Image Image

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Helly Angel
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Post by Helly Angel » 17 Aug 2007 20:53

I`m looking a postcard from the first photo to make a good resolution scan image.
Last edited by Helly Angel on 17 Aug 2007 20:56, edited 1 time in total.

Wotan2
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Post by Wotan2 » 17 Aug 2007 20:54

As I remember there was a dublicated desk of Hitler´s study made in the period by Müncher ore better Deutsche Werkstätten. I have seen it in an exibition in Berlin in the late eighties to be seen at the "Stettiner Bahnhof". If wanted, I can send you a photo shot by mail.

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ihoyos
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Post by ihoyos » 17 Aug 2007 22:52

Veri rare.
The globe is the musseun is diferent to the Globe in photos , in the study and with the russians??

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phylo_roadking
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Post by phylo_roadking » 17 Aug 2007 23:27

The marble topped table to the left of the picture under the window - one corner of it is in a private collection here in Northern Ireland. It was "acquired" with gentle persuasion and a hammer by a local man who was a subaltern in the British Army in the summer of 1945.

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Von Odine
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Post by Von Odine » 18 Aug 2007 05:30

phylo_roadking wrote:The marble topped table to the left of the picture under the window - one corner of it is in a private collection here in Northern Ireland. It was "acquired" with gentle persuasion and a hammer by a local man who was a subaltern in the British Army in the summer of 1945.


I believe I once read the lion's share of the Map Table, including some of the legs, ended up in the US, New Jersey if memory serves, obtained by a High-Ranking Army Officer. The story is his wife used it to make candy on! :)
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Von Odine
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Post by Von Odine » 18 Aug 2007 06:05

ihoyos wrote:Veri rare.
The globe is the musseun is diferent to the Globe in photos , in the study and with the russians??


Looking at the pictures here, I don't think there was a globe in AH's office... there WAS for sure one in the Cabinet Room.The one pictured is there... look in the lower right picture of the four together above... the distance between the top of the door and the ceiling is less than in Hitler's office and neither that door or a globe appear in any of the other pictures. Now look at the pic below of the Cabinet Room... perfect match. The Cabinet Room globe was removed to the USSR, used by a High-Ranking General in his office for a few years, then stored and eventually destroyed by water damage.
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