Signed Photo of Hitler Heads to Auction
A signed photograph of Adolf Hitler recovered from the fuhrer’s bunker at the end of World War II will hit the auction block at the Auction Centre in Runcorn, Cheshire, UK, next month. The auction house expects the macabre memento to sell for £12,000–18,000 ($19,750–29,600).
War correspondent Scott William Forrest was on the ground in Europe throughout the Second World War, witnessing the Nazis’ bombing of Guernica in 1937, their invasion of Poland in 1939, the Allies landing at Normandy in 1944, and many other important events during the conflict, including the fall of Berlin.
Forrest was the first reporter to enter the Führerbunker, Hitler’s air-raid shelter in the Reich Chancellery, after it fell to Allied forces. Hitler committed suicide to avoid being captured by the Red Army.
The photograph, signed by Hitler, also comes with a signed statement from Forrest explaining how it came to be in his possession. During his duties as a war correspondent, he explains, “I went into Berlin at the end of the war with the first British troops. My reports from Berlin at that time can be seen in the files of the News Chronicle at the British Museum’s Newspaper Library at Colindale, London. This signed photograph of Hitler was discovered by me in the ruins of the bunker and has been in my possession ever since.”
The photo, inscribed “Landsberg 1925,” was taken during Hitler’s incarceration at Landsberg prison for treason for his involvement in the Munich “Beer Hall Putsch,” a failed coup in 1923. While behind bars, Hitler wrote his infamous autobiography, Mein Kampf. Later in 1925, he was released and began his rise to power.
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