On Sunday, the famous telephone used by Adolf Hitler at an auction in the United States for $243,000. The name of the bidder is still unknown and the bid was reportedly made by phone. Hitler received the red telephone from the Wehrmacht. He reportedly used it during the two final years of World War II. In 1954, the phone was recovered from the Nazi leader’s bunker. Since then, it has been sitting in a box somewhere inside an English country house.
A legendary telephone
The now legendary telephone was made by Siemens. Initially, it was black but someone painted it red and engraved it with the swastika and Adolf Hitler’s name. According to the auction house, this simple telephone was maybe “the most destructive weapon of all time”. Hitler issued the orders to kill millions of people while using this old device. It is fantastic what baggage can an old object carry with it. He used it on trains and vehicles as well as in his field headquarters.
The story says that a British officer arrived in Berlin just a few days after the end of the war. He recovered the phone from Hitler’s bunker. The officer’s son, who is now 82, inherited the legendary object from his father in 1977, when he died. According to him, his father saw the telephone more as an old relic and as a testament of his defeat. He never thought that it would become so important over time. The officer only took it as a reminder that the worst days were finally done.
He stated that he thought the telephone might be sold for a larger sum of money. However, he is happy with what he got. The man also declared that he is relieved he will not have to keep that object in his house anymore. People reportedly told him it would bring him bad luck and he always thought it a bit sinister to look at.
A fascinating story
The Russians reportedly first offered another, black telephone, found in the room of Eva Braun, to the British officer. He refused it and said that his favorite color was red. So, he took home the red telephone, by Hitler’s bed. Also, he recovered a porcelain model of an Alsatian dog. In May 1945, he wrote a letter to his wife but failed to mention anything related to Hitler’s phone which was now in his possession.
It is interesting to note that the porcelain model of the Alsatian was also auctioned on Sunday. A different bidder bought it for $24,300. The dog was supposedly made by the workers at the Dachau concentration camp. Heinrich Himmler, the SS chief and the architect of the Final Solution was the one who offered it to Adolf Hitler.
The son of the British officer expressed his hopes that one day, all these artifacts will be exposed in a museum somewhere. People need to see them and be reminded about the horrors of the past. Also, they should stand as a testament that if we do not learn from history, we are all doomed to repeat it sooner or later.
Image source: here