Historical World War II documents, letters, and diaries - Collectibles and discoveries.
Latest hand-picked WWII news. See also: Mein Kampf, WW2 & Nazi Archives, WWII Historians, Teaching WWII History, Nazi Holocaust Archives, Nazi Memorabilia: Controversial Sales and Auctions, WW2 Stamps.
Conflict-Series: A highly rated strategy game series for Android
If you love classic PC war games and legendary strategy board games make sure to check out the highly rated Conflict-series for Android. Some of the WWII Campaigns include D-Day 1944, Operation Barbarossa, Invasion of Poland 1939, France 1940, Kursk 1943, Market Garden, Iwo Jima, Okinawa, Rommel's North African campaign, the Battle of Bulge, and the Battle of Berlin 1945. In addition there are American Civil War, First World War and American Revolutionary War scenarios available.
(available on Google Play & Amazon App Store)
Real Schindler`s list expected to make $2.4m in sale
One of the original `Schindler`s lists`, the documents used by the German industrialist Oskar Schindler to save more than 1,200 Jews during the Holocaust, has been put up for sale. The document, commemorated in Thomas Keneally`s Booker prize-winning novel, was among those drawn up to protect Jewish workers from deportation and death. It is expected to make more than $2.4m.
After Pearl Harbor: The Secret Plan to Hide America`s Iconic Documents
In the tense days following the attack on Pearl Harbor, a train left Washington, D.C., under the cover of night carrying the most precious cargo ever transported in American history. This is the story of the secret operation to save the U.S. Constitution, Declaration of Independence and other treasured American artifacts during World War II.
Telegram Goering sent Hitler asking him if he could take over the Nazi party in last days sold for $55,000
A telegram sent to Hitler on the eve of his downfall has been sold for $55,000. The document was sent by Hermann Göring in the final days of the war when he got word that Hitler was in hiding in a bunker in Berlin and wanted to turn the country over to him. Göring then sent Hitler a telegram on April 23, 1945, asking to take charge. If he didn`t receive a reply by 22:00 that evening, he would assume that Hitler had lost his freedom of action and take up the reigns of the falling regime. With the message, the Nazi leader risked treason, but was concerned that if he waited, his chance at power would pass him by. The telegram threw the Führer into rage. In Hitler`s testament, written on April 29, 1945, Göring was dismissed of all authority.
Top secret D-Day plans found hidden under hotel`s floorboards
Top secret documents giving orders for the D-Day landings have been found under hotel floorboards after being discarded by Army chiefs seventy years ago. The Balmer Lawn Hotel in Brockenhurst, Hants, was used as an army staff college during WWII and was involved in the planning of the Normandy invasion. Half a bin bag`s worth of typed documents and envelopes, some marked "On His Majesty`s Secret Service", were found during refurbishments of the luxury four-star hotel.
1000 letters sent from Nazi-occupied France discovered in the archives of the BBC
The remarkable discovery of a box of letters in the archives of the BBC is shedding new light on conditions and attitudes in France during WWII. The letters were sent to London from just after the French surrender to Germany in June 1940, through to the end of 1943. They were addressed to the French service of the BBC, otherwise known as Radio Londres, which during the German occupation was a vital source of information for millions of French men and women. Extracts from the letters were read out on a programme called The French Speak to the French. After the war, the letters were put in storage and forgotten. That was until historian Aurelie Luneau stumbled upon them while researching her thesis on Radio Londres.
In his will - suppressed by the Nazis - Hindenburg disavowed the Nazi leader he`d appointed
Declassified British intelligence papers have shed new light on the testimony of a pre-WWII German diplomat who claimed that a single document, that was once in his possession, could have changed the course of history by preventing Hitler`s consolidation of power. Baron Fritz Günther von Tschirschky und Bögendorff, a confidant of Weimar-era president Paul von Hindenburg, helped to draft Hindenburg`s last will and testament, a document which he said blasted Hitler and called on the German people to embrace democracy. But Hitler got wind of the document upon the president`s death and gave orders to "ensure that this document comes into my possession as soon as possible".
Who`s Who` book of 30,000 SS members expected to fetch £2,000 at auction
A chilling `Who`s who` book which names 30,000 members of SS is to go up for auction next month. The 425-page `seniority list` – which includes some of the most feared men in the Nazi regime – was stolen by a British spy during World War II. Listed at number one is Heinrich Himmler. The book, which is expected to fetch £2,000, lists the name of each member, their decorations and awards, their division, party number, SS number, date of birth and promotion details. It came to light when the son of the spy, who has not been identified, was sorting through his estate after his death.
Gandhi`s letter to Hitler never reached its intended recipient because of an intervention by the British government
As tensions mounted in Europe following Nazi Germany`s occupation of Czechoslovakia, Mohandas Gandhi, the famously non-violent leader of the Indian independence movement, wrote a clear and concise plea for Hitler to avoid war, but it never reached its intended recipient because of an intervention by the British government. "It is quite clear that you are today the one person in the world who can prevent a war which may reduce humanity to the savage state. Must you pay the price for an object however worthy it may appear to you to be?"
Long-lost diary of top Nazi leader Alfred Rosenberg discovered in Buffalo
400 pages from the long-lost diary of top Nazi leader Alfred Rosenberg has been discovered in the United States. Rosenberg`s memos to Hitler were cited as evidence during the Nuremberg trials, and he directed the systematic Nazi looting of Jewish art, cultural and religious property throughout Europe. His diary `complements, and in part contradicts, already known documentation.` The discovery could offer new insight into meetings Rosenberg had with Hitler and other top Nazi leaders, including Heinrich Himmler and Herman Goering. It also includes details about the German occupation of the Soviet Union, including plans for mass killings of Jews and other Eastern Europeans.
MI9 gadgets manual from 1942 to be auctioned off
An extraordinary MI9 catalogue containing top secret designs for covert equipment, worthy of James Bond`s gadgets will go under the hammer at Bonhams Gentleman`s Library sale on 30th Jan 2013. "Per Ardua Libertas" is an extremely rare book made by MI9 in 1942, detailing items produced to aid WWII prisoners and operatives. Among the designs are coat buttons and gold teeth concealing compasses, hacksaws hidden in dart boards, maps printed on clothing and cameras disguised as cigarette lighters. Other ingenious designs include maps concealed in playing cards and records. MI9, less well-known than MI6, was a secret department of the War Office formed in 1939 to handle covert operations and aid resistance fighters in enemy territories.
1942 Nazi textbook that celebrates Hitler as `great peacemaker` goes on sale
German schoolchildren preparing for the invasion of the UK during the Second World War were given a textbook portraying Hitler as a man of peace and the British as evil warmongers. The bizarre 1942 publication - which was written in English - attempts to give children an idea of what to expect when visiting the British Isles in the event of a successful Nazi take-over. In it, a variety of bold claims are made, accusing Jews of running the British press and statements about English people secretly supporting Fascism, but it does reflect Hitler`s admiration for the work of William Shakespeare.
Rare Nazi book (1938-1941: Vier Jahre, Hermann Goring-Werke) found in LaGrange Park
LaGrange Park Public Library officials are brimming with curiosity on who dropped off a rare book stamped "Secret!" from Nazi Commander Hermann Goring, which is now under study at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C. The book, "1938-1941: Vier Jahre, Hermann Goring-Werke," likely was left in the library`s book drop. It easily could have been discarded if not for Ursula Stanek, who grew up in Mannheim, Germany. The book sat on her desk for several weeks in the spring until she noted the inside cover was stamped "Geheim!" meaning "Secret!" with letterhead from Goring.
Rare WWII naval dispatch announcing the end of the war with Japan to be auctioned at Kirk`s Auction Gallery
Chief Yeomen Robert W. York knew he was clutching a piece of history as he hurried to find his boss aboard the USS Holland, which was trolling the Pacific days after the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. In his possession was a dispatch from President Harry S. Truman`s navy secretary, dated Aug. 15, 1945, that read: "All hands of the United States Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard may take satisfaction in the conclusion of the war against Japan." Japan had surrendered. York kept that historic 8-inch-by-6.5-inch piece of paper in a shoebox for the next six decades. He died recently at age 91, and now his son is auctioning it off in Pennsylvania on the 67th anniversary of V-J Day, the end of the war with Japan.
Rare Nazi police report on the deportation of 1,000 Jews from Düsseldorf unearthed, only the second of its kind ever found
A rare Nazi police report on the deportation of 1,000 Jews from Düsseldorf has been unearthed in a London archive. It is only the second of its kind ever found, as most such records were destroyed towards the end of the war. Police captain and SS member Wilhelm Meurin was responsible for guarding the deportation train which left Düsseldorf on November 14, 1941 in freezing temperatures, and travelled east for 4 days. He said that although 300 of the people on the train were no longer capable of walking, "the unloading in Minsk could be conducted at the desired speed."
British military planned to secretly arm Vichy France behind Churchill`s back
The British military planned to secretly arm Vichy France during the Second World War behind PM Churchill`s back, despite the fact they were fighting for enemy forces, new documents have revealed. Confidential papers, unseen until now, show senior members of the Allied forces held a clandestine meeting with representatives of Vichy France - even as their opposing forces were fighting in Madagascar. Not only were Winston Churchill and Charles de Gaulle unaware of the meeting, they were specifically banned from being told under orders of the British Chief of Staff, who feared their reaction.
Personal copy of a secret WWII book (only 48 copies were made) belonging to D-Day General Sir Miles Dempsey discovered in safe
A book recording the precise details about the D-Day landings has been discovered locked in a safe. General Sir Miles Dempsey GBE, KCB, DSO, MC commanded the 2nd Army and ordered the account to be written after the events that would change the course of the war. Only 48 copies of the 3-volume book, An Account Of The Operations Of Second Army In Europe 1944-45, were ever published, and are all held in museums or military institutions. The book that has now emerged was war legend Gen Dempsey`s own copy. After his death in 1969, the book was passed down to his great nephew James Dempsey, who put the volumes in a friend`s safe over 20 years ago and forgot about them.
Secret WWII documents reveal that US Marines arrived in Northern Ireland earlier than previously thought
Secret files detailing the presence of US Marines in Londonderry during the Second World War have been recently declassified. They reveal that the first American armed forces personnel arrived in Belfast not in 1942 as was traditionally held, but in Derry, to prepare the base at Ardmore in August 1941 - four months before Pearl Harbor was attacked.
Diary kept by small-town official Friedrich Kellner shows Germans could have known of Nazi horrors
Newly published diaries by a Nazi-era court official document details that others conveniently ignored. While many Germans would later claim they knew nothing of Nazi crimes, Friedrich Kellner`s observations show that such information was available.
Arnold Weiss: US soldier who worked with Hugh Trevor-Roper and found Hitler`s will after WWII
Because of his German-language skills, US Army counterintelligence officials shipped Arnold Weiss to Europe. After Hitler had committed suicide, Weiss was one of the persons tracking down members of Hitler`s inner circle. Wilhelm Zander, the military aide of Martin Bormann, was found in December 1945 near the Czech border. When Weiss asked Zander why he had left führerbunker before Hitler killed himself, Zander answered that he had been dispatched with an envelope - which included Hitler`s last will and political testament.
Bid launched to raise funds to buy Alan Turing papers for the nation
The 15 papers -- Alan Turing only published 18 -- are expected to fetch up to £500,000 when they go under the hammer at Christie`s auctioneers. Journalist Gareth Halfacree, who is behind the campaign approved by the Bletchley Park Trust, has so far raised only £15,000.
Update (25 February 2011): Alan Turing papers saved for the nation after a donation from the National Heritage Memorial Fund
From Operation Sealion dossier: British seaside photos that set out Hitler`s targets
They are classic English seaside scenes which could arrive in the mail with the phrase: "Wish you were here". But in reality, these photos of the English coastline are in a top-secret dossier Adolf Hitler gave to senior Wehrmacht officers before the Nazi invasion of Britain in 1940. The postcard-like images locate English coastal towns in the path of the Nazi assault, featuring landmarks like Brighton Pier and Land`s End. The original copy of the Nazis` briefing book "Militäergeographische Angaben über England Südküste" for "Operation Sealion" includes every attack point and weakness along England`s south coast.
Martin Ernest Dannenberg: U.S. soldier who found copy of Nuremberg Laws (Article no longer available from the original source)
Martin Ernest Dannenberg, who as a WWII Army sergeant discovered a copy of the Nuremberg Laws, passed away at 94. Dannenberg, a special agent in charge of an Army counterintelligence team, recalled in 1999 how on April 28, 1945, he realized the significance of the documents he had found inside an ordinary brown manila envelope - sealed with red wax embossed with swastikas - in a bank in Eichstatt. He was with Frank Perls - a U.S. military translator, the son of Jewish art dealers in Berlin and a refugee from the Third Reich. Tears filled Perls` eyes when they understood the historic importance of the document.
Huntington Library gives Nuremberg Laws - looted by General Patton - to National Archives
The Huntington Library gives the two original sets of the Nuremberg Laws to the National Archives, which already has the records of the Nuremberg war crimes trials. Each set of the 1935 Nuremberg laws is typed on 4 pieces of paper - and one set is thought to have been signed by Hitler. The "laws for the protection of German blood and German honor," forbade marriages between Jews and Germans, while the "Reichs Citizen Law" decreed that a citizen was only a person "of German or German related blood who proves by his attitude that he is willing and capable to serve the German people and the Reich faithfully."
Sgt Charles Edmonson`s historical documents about Nazi massacre in the Fucecchio Marshes, Italy for sale
Witness statements from 1944 have been discovered - hidden in a house in Stoke - which detail the violence unleashed in a north Italian village. Retelling the start of the murders, Sgt Charles Edmonson wrote: "Refugees... were awakened by the sound of machine gun fire. The Germans knocked on the doors and ordered everyone outside. As the occupants walked out they were mown down by machine gun fire." At least 200 people were slaughtered in the Fucecchio Marshes massacre. The Germans were retaliating after resistance fighters from the village shot and injured two German soldiers.
Schindler`s List goes on sale for 1.5 million pounds
The Schindler`s List of Jews saved from the Nazi Holocaust during the Second World War is for sale for £1.5 million. The list of 801 Jewish men, women and children, which belongs to the family of Oskar Schindler`s right-hand man, Itzhak Stern. There are 5 Schindler`s List preserved in the world today, 7 were reputedly made by Oskar Schindler. Two are in the hands of Israeli Holocaust Museum`s, one is in Koblenz in Germany and the other is in the Holocaust Museum in Washington D.C. The other two are unaccounted for.
Dannenberg family donating Nazi rocket scientist`s papers to UAH library
Rocket propulsion specialist Konrad Dannenberg`s papers and memorabilia were donated to the M. Louis Salmon Library at UAH (University of Alabama in Huntsville). The collection includes his books, photographs, awards, memorabilia, models, his Peenemuende diaries (1941-1944), and such unique documents as his immigration papers when he came to the America after the Second World War to continue working with Wernher von Braun`s team. In Huntsville, the papers will be easily available to family - and historians will find the collection conveniently near the U.S. Space & Rocket Center, Marshall Space Flight Center and Redstone Arsenal.
Non-Aggression Pact between Nazi Germany and the USSR (Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact)
The Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, a major factor in the start of World War II, was signed in Moscow on August 23, 1939. It set the fate of the Latvians, Estonians, Lithuanians, Ukrainians, Byelorussians, and Moldavians as these nations were merged into the Soviet Union. In spite of the Soviet Union`s collapse in 1991, the pact still otulines many geopolitical realities in Europe. The pact was signed by Foreign Ministers Vyacheslav Molotov and Joachim von Ribbentrop. The pact included secret protocol (the original was found in the archives of the Politburo of the CPSU Central Committee in the 1990s), which defined the Soviet and Nazi spheres of influence in Eastern Europe.
B17 flight log (5 sept 1943 - 21 feb 1944)
World War II diary of a B17 Flying Fortress navigator. 8th Air Force, 386th Bomb Wing. 25 pages.
National Archives of Australia regrets that a World War II surrender document was sold to a private collector
The National Archives of Australia regrets that a historic WWII surrender document was sold to a private collector for $102,000 at a Naval and Military Club auction. The "Instrument of Surrender" marked the end of combat between the Japanese and Australians in Papua New Guinea, Bougainville and surrounding islands. In 1945, when the Japanese surrendered to the Australian general Sir Vernon Sturdee in the South Pacific, 3 documents were made: one for the ship on which it was signed (HMS Glory), one for the Japanese and one for the Australians. The National Archives thinks the document auctioned off was the Australians` copy.
Personal documents of a member of the 1944 plot to kill Adolf Hitler discovered
Stefan Fisher bought the personal military papers of the German Cmdr. Johannes-Georg Klamroth 30 years ago - having no idea that they belonged to an intelligence officer executed for his links (his cousin Bernhard Klamroth provided the explosives) to the failed 1944 plot to assassinate Adolf Hitler. That is, until he was browsing the history section of Borders Books and looked through "My Father`s Country: The Story of a German Family," a biography by Klamroth`s daughter, Wibke Bruhns. Fisher went home and checked the German documents. "I couldn`t believe what I was reading. I have this man`s biography in my hands."
Led Soldiers - World War II diary posted online
Led Soldiers re-creates the authentic diaries a member of the tank regiment, the 15th /19th King`s Royal Hussars. These diaries present a day-by day account of Douglas Mayman`s conscription, induction and military training, leading up to his experiences under fire as his regiment battled their way through France, Belgium, Holland and into Nazi Germany. The Led Soldiers blog consists of day-by-day entries taken from the diaries and covering a period of 18 months - The last entry Mayman made in his war diary was on 21st April 1945. The diaries are also available in book "Led Soldiers".
World War II documents from Avalon project
Dozens of World War II documents and document collections are available online at the Avalon Project, including: The British War Bluebook; Casablanca Conference; France`s Response to Germany`s Invasion of Poland; German Declaration of War with the United States : December 11, 1941; German Surrender Documents; Japanese Surrender Documents; Master Lend-Lease Agreement; Nazi-Soviet Relations 1939 - 1941; Pearl Harbor - Documents; Potsdam Conference, July 17-August 2, 1945...
Jerry Beau has collected Marine Raiders records for the last 52 years
Jerry Beau is a national treasure - he has spent the last 52 years as the unpaid historian of the Marine Raiders Association, gathering service records and other data on 7,600 men who served with the elite Marine Raiders during the Second World War. "We only have about 200 of the original Raiders left," he said in an interview. Beau has filled 20 file drawers with muster rolls, discharge papers, and other documents on his fellow Raiders. His files are a gold mine of information for military historians, the Raiders and their descendants trying to research family history.
National treasure: Collection of WWII-era botanical sketches made in Australia
As a German living in Britain at the start of the World War II, Hans Lindau was interned and sent to Australia. He spent WWII sketching wildlife on 2,500 sheets of toilet paper, making one of the country’s most important botanical records. Now the notes are set to go on show in Australia: after gathering dust in the Black Country for the last 25 years. The current owner of the collection, Maureen Miles, only recently found out their importance. The archive is made up of detailed notes of the botany of Australia, contained within a case, along with 11 notebooks and 25 Dunlop Prisoner of War envelopes.
800-Page German dictionary warns against words used by Third Reich
Certain German words have for decades been taboo for native speakers because of the way those words were used by the Nazis. Now, an 800-page dictionary serves as a guidebook to avoid traps into which Germans can fall. Terms such as "endloesung" (final solution) or "selektion" (selection) can get the user into trouble, because the words got particular associations during the Third Reich. "Lager" (camp) refers to the concentration camps. The "Woerterbuch der Vergangenheitsbewaeltigung" (Dictionary of Coming to Terms With the Past) studies about 1,000 words - from "Anschluss," the "annexation" of Austria in 1938, to "Wehrmacht," the Nazi-era armed forces.
Letters from the past: A personal history of World War II
In March 1945, WWII still raged in Europe as Nazi Germany was making its last stand. V-E day was 2 months away, and German forces were still fighting fiercely. U.S. Air Force Cpl. John Backus was working to keep the B-17 bombers of the "Bloody Hundredth" group flying for their missions over Third Reich and back home his wife Katherine was working long hours. Their letters and diary entries have been collected in "We Just Did: The World War II Letters & Diary of John & Katherine Backus" - edited by CJ Backus. -- Excerpts: Diary entry: Fort (B-17 Flying Fortress) #852 was a mess but got back alright with flak holes as big around as a barrel. Waist gunner`s head blown off.
Advocate for the Doomed - James G. Mcdonald
James G. Mcdonald was an American ahead of his time. In 1930s when diplomacy was conducted between the official elites of nation-states, he jumped into the fray as a kind of freelance ambassador of human rights. And he did so because he had the foresight to recognize the disaster. In the early 1930s, he was seen as pro-German, having argued that the reparations demanded by the Versailles Treaty were weakening Germany. Those views and his "Aryan" looks misled the Nazi leaders he had met in his travels as refugee commissioner for the League of Nations and head of the Foreign Policy Association. McDonald was shocked by the Nazis` rise to power.
War diaries of a member of King`s Own Scottish Borders fetch £30,000
Peter White`s collection of drawings and notes was put together on World War II battlefields - a practice prohibited at the time. A spokesman for Christie`s said the material in the diaries was "very, very moving". Among the items contained in the collection was a camera confiscated from a German PoW. According to Thomas Venning of Christie`s it was the kind of collection rarely seen. "It has got that unique combination of words and pictures." The regimental headquarters do hold a copy of the manuscript as well as his book "With the Jocks".
Priceless collection stolen by the Nazis found in Soviet military archive
A invaluable collection of antique manuscripts and books that has been missing since Nazi troops looted it from the synagogue in Rome in 1943 may be languishing in an abandoned Soviet military archive. As Soviet troops pushed back the German forces, they may have taken possession of the collection. There is good reason to believe that the collection could be in a warehouse, said Dario Tedeschi, who has been leading efforts on behalf of the Italian Government. He described the decades-long hunt as "trying to unravel a historical mystery."
Whose Nuremberg Laws are they: Patton looted violating his own orders (Article no longer available from the original source)
One of the most important documents of the 20th century is in LA, on view for all to visit. How the Nuremberg Laws came to California in the possession of Gen. George S. Patton, who left them to reside first at the Huntington Museum and Library and now at the Skirball, is a story explored in the book, "Bloodlines: Recovering Hitler`s Nuremberg Laws From Patton`s Trophy to Public Memorial" by Anthony M. Platt and Cecilia E. O`Leary. The Nuremberg Laws consist of 3 directives: (1) The Reich Flag Law made the swastika the national symbol, and prohibited Jews from hoisting the flag. It was signed by Adolf Hitler, Interior Minister Frick and Gen. Werner von Blomberg.
Collection of WW2 experiences in words, pictures, diaries for sale
His wartime reminiscences have become one of the must-read accounts of the World War II. But even more extraordinary tales from former King`s Own Scottish Borderer Peter White have emerged with the sale of his archive in London. White, whose diaries as a commander of Scottish soldiers in the 52nd Lowland Division were published in the book With The Jocks, was also an artist whose sketches, watercolours and wartime observations give a rare insight into life on the front line. His archive, expected to fetch up to £50,000, is described as "the most comprehensive illustrated, first-hand record of the war ever to come to auction".
Adolf Hitler`s nazi version of the Commandments discovered
A nazi bible featuring Adolf Hitler`s version of the Ten Commandments has been discovered. Adolf Hitler got his theorists to alter the Commandments - and add two more - in a bid to further the Aryan ideal for the book "Germans With God". New ones included Honour your Fuhrer and your master, Avoid all hypocrisy, and Keep the blood pure and your honour holy. The book, printed in 1941 was meant to be essential reading in Nazi Germany alongside Hitler`s Mein Kampf. Hitler hated the church`s teachings, but he knew it`s power in Nazi Germany and couldn`t banish it overnight, so his plan was to gradual Nazifying.
Nazi Germany: 1944, the British Soldier`s Pocketbook
1944 British Soldier`s Pocketbook, which was issued to tens of thousands of troops, provided a potted history of the country and a rundown of the national psyche. The 46-page booklet, which will be published by the National Archives, gives a unique insight into how British wartime leaders viewed the enemy. They thought it essential to warn troops that the Germans "don`t know how to make tea" and added that "football is entirely amateur". The booklet says: "But for centuries they have been trained to submit to authority - not because they thought their rulers wise and right, but because obedience was imposed on them by force."
The death books seem utterly ordinary lacking Nazi symbols
The death books seem utterly ordinary, their covers inscribed with neither swastikas nor other frightening Nazi symbols. They are just the black-and-white, cardboard-covered composition books. The execution list of Totenbuch runs for pages, each individual receiving a single line -- name, date and place of birth, inmate number, and an epitaph, "By order of RSHA shot," the acronym for the Central Office for Security of the Reich. The cause of death for each was a single bullet to the base of the skull: Genickschuss -- neck shot.
Totenbuch inside controversial archive reveal Nazis` full horror
The nazi archive managed by International Tracing Service is compiled from tonnes of documents recorded by the Nazis and contains cards relating to more than 17.5 million civilians. Much of it is simple, solemn facts: name, serial and prisoner number as well as the place and date of their birth. "It also shows how they died," said the archival manager, showing a copy of the camp`s Totenbuch, or Death Book, from 1942 and 1943. "These prisoners were killed every two minutes with a shot to the back of the head." In a few hours, 300 were executed on 20 April, 1942. "That was Hitler`s birthday. The camp commandant did it as a birthday gift for him."
Diary fragment: Meetings with Hitler, Mussolini and future Pope Pius XII (Article no longer available from the original source)
In May 2003, a Washington lawyer was cleaning her basement when she came upon fragments of an old diary. Where was the rest of the journal? It would take an archivist at the US Holocaust Memorial Museum months to find the answer. Stephen Mize discovered a treasure trove: more than 10,000 pages of meticulous entries chronicling one man`s desperate attempts to help Europe`s Jews escape the Nazis. McDonald diaries details meetings with Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini as well as with Cardinal Eugenio Pacelli, the man who would become Pope Pius XII, Mize said.
Red Army phrasebook hints at plans to fight Hitler on British front
A newly discovered relic of the WWII shows how the Red Army was expected to take a no-nonsense attitude if they ever encountered English speakers. The Russian-English military phrasebook told officers how to interrogate English-speaking soldiers and civilians. But the date of the phrasebook`s publication, summer 1940 - a year before the Soviets published their German phrasebook - is seen as highly significant. Some historians believe it adds weight to a controversial theory that Stalin would have sent troops to Britain if the Nazis invaded in order to open up a "Second Front" against Hitler.
Russia returns Sarospatak library to Hungary
The State Duma has decided to hand over to Hungary antique books from the Sarospatak Library, which consists of 134 volumes. Before WWII it belonged to the Sarospatak Calvinist College of the Tisza Diocese of the Hungarian Reformed Church in Budapest. Although Hungary was a German ally in WWII (but was occupied by the Nazis later on), the Library was confiscated and transported from Budapest to the Third Reich. It was there that it fell into the hands of the 49th Army. Eventually, the books landed in the U.S.S.R., where the trophy collection became part of the Nizhny Novgorod research library.
850-page collection of excerpts from the Nazi leader`s speeches and proclamations (Article no longer available from the original source)
Publishers, Marie and Lou Bolchazy, are putting the finishing touches on their manuscript for a one-volume, 850-page collection of excerpts from the Nazi leader`s speeches and proclamations. The work, which will be marketed to the general public, is a distillation of a four-volume, 3,400-page collection of Adolf Hitler speeches that the firm has published in installments since 1990. At $39.95, the single book will be nearly $700 less expensive than the full scholarly set.
Hitler`s library - Now known as the Third Reich Collection
"I realised this book had never been touched since Adolf Hitler was reading it in his dug-out in 1917,"said Mr Ryback. "After he had finished reading by candlelight, he had closed it and no-one had opened it again." The 1,200 volumes known as the Third Reich Collection were found hidden in Schnapps crates buried in a Munich salt-mine by United States soldiers from the 101 Airborne Division in the spring of 1945. They were delivered to the Library of Congress in 1952.
Hitler`s second book - The amazing story behind the discovery of Mein Kampf sequel
In 1958 Gerhard Weinberg made the kind of discovery that features in every historian`s dreams: Adolf Hitler`s largely unknown second book. When Hitler`s Table Talk was published by Hugh Trevor-Roper in 1953, there was a reference to this "unpublished work" by Hitler himself. One day, leafing through the contents of a box-file (captured German military documents in the US Army archives) he found a folder labelled "Draft of Mein Kampf". Inside was a 324-page typescript: "The moment I looked at it... and the attached document on its confiscation, it became obvious to me that this was not a draft of Mein Kampf."
A faked passport for Adolf Hitler by British intelligence officers
A faked passport for Adolf Hitler made during the second world war by British intelligence officers was made public for the first time. Forgery was an SOE speciality. It claimed successfully to have compromised Nazi general Franz Halder by attributing anti-Hitler sentiments to him in false papers. Forged postage stamps bearing the likeness of Heinrich Himmler were reportedly dropped on Germany in 1943. The faked Hitler passport was doctored to make him Jewish, carrying an entry visa for Palestine.