6-min video interview of Harry Ettlinger, member of the Monuments Men who recovered art looted by the Nazis
Video interview of Harry Ettlinger, a German-born Jew who moved to Newark in 1938. He is one of only 9 living members of the Monuments Men - officially called "Monuments, Fine Arts, and Archives" program - a group of 350 men and women from 13 Allied nations who worked to save Europe's cultural treasures after the Nazi looting and the ravages of war.
The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi crooks, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History
Interview with Robert Edsel, author of Monuments Men. As World War Two raged, Adolf Hitler dreamed of building the world's greatest museum in Linz, Austria. He planned to call it the Führermuseum and stock it with the works of art from around the globe. 1942-1951, 365 men and women serving in the Monuments, Fine Arts & Archives division (MFAA) of the Allied forces - known as the Monuments Men - recovered Nazi records and followed leads to hunt down looted treasures. (Q) Where are some of the places Monument Men uncovered artworks? (A) Some were in castles or tunnels. The Nazis built false walls into castles - and they also used salt and copper mines.
Author Robert Edsel continues work of Monument Men who rescued looted art
Robert Edsel didn't set out to educate the world about World War II, but he found that one war story still needs to be told. Hundreds of thousands of artworks were destroyed or looted by the Nazis so that Adolf Hitler could create his Führer Museum in his hometown of Linz. Monuments Men crusaded to protect these works, retrieve them from the Nazis, and, if possible, return them to their owners. In his quest to learn more, Edsel discovered that not much had been written about Monuments Men. That's when his 10-year journey to document their work began. In 2006 Edsel published "Rescuing Da Vinci," featuring 400 photos of the Monuments Men during the war.
Monument man Charles Parkhurst tracked down looted art
Charles Parkhurst, a museum director and one of the "monuments men," an Allied Forces team that toured around salt mines and German castles in search of art stolen by the Nazis during World War II, passed away at 95. Operating from the former headquarters of the Nazi Party in Munich, Monument Men id'd 1,056 deposits of looted art. On Nov. 7, 1945, Parkhurst and other officers created a furor with the Wiesbaden Manifesto - declaring their refusal to help move German-owned artworks to the U.S. for safekeeping. "The language was the same the Nazis had used when they looted, which was 'protective custody.' We thought that was a bad omen."
Rescuing Nazi-looted art: Monuments Men saved countless treasures
The looting by Nazis was possibly the great pillage in history, as much a part of Nazi war planning as was military conquest. A small band (Monuments Men) of American men and women was tasked to find looted art. But they weren't always successful. Documentary "The Rape of Europa" shows how villagers hijacked a train carrying art that Herman Goering had attempted to collect. But the monuments men came upon a castle full of property stolen from the Rothchilds, and discovered Adolf Hitler's art hoard in a salt mine in the Austrian Alps. "If you like extraordinary treasure hunts... There's no way you can't be interested in this story," said author Robert Edsel.
His mission: to save art looted by Nazis - Here's how he did it
Bernard Taper dreamed about "Portrait of a Young Man" by Raphael - the most prized painting looted by the Nazis that has never been found. He spent 2 years searching for the Raphael in post-WWII Germany as an art-intelligence officer with the Monuments, Fine Arts and Archives section of the U.S. military. He tracked down many artworks 1946-1947, including objects German peasants had looted from train carrying booty pilfered by Luftwaffe chief Hermann Göring. A connoisseur of luxury, he had amassed thousands of paintings and others works during his tenure as the second-most powerful man in Nazi Germany.
Monument Man saved artwork from Nazi looters
The art was stolen, or about to be, but U.S. soldiers got there first, saving 10 million works of art from Nazis during World War 2. Known as "Monument Men," they stopped the greatest theft in history. In 1939, museum directors emptied the Louvre and other museums, hiding their treasures in castles before invading Germans could loot them. Near the end of the war, they went into Nazi Germany to find artworks that had been stolen. They kept safe artworks including Rembrandt's "Self Portrait" while it was stored in the Heilbronn salt mine in Southern Germany. The Heilbronn mine took 10 months to empty.