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ColinRF

Autographs of the German Resistance & July 20 plot

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I am not into paper work and pictures , but this thread is totaly amazing and intresting .

Dan

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I am not into paper work and pictures , but this thread is totaly amazing and intresting .

Dan

Thanks to Dan and Ian - very gratifying comments and much appreciated.

Colin

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Thanks Chris - he has a great signature!

I noticed that Dave Danner posted a letf-handed and post wounding Claus v. Stauffenberg in the German signatures string.

Colin

Edited by ColinRF

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Thanks Chris - its on hold for a bit as I concentrate on my new obsession - Great War. I am sure I will be back to Stauffenberg and company soon enough.


Cheers

Colin

Edited by ColinRF

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Tom - a wonderful resistance-related piece to have in your collection. I have always had a special interest in the Canaris group. The members murdered by the SS in the Lehrterstrasse a few days before the end of the war almost survived but Hitler was determined to take all is enemies down with him. Too sad. A real treasure to have!

Thanks


Colin

Edited by ColinRF

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Sure - if you get them to sell Graf vom Moltke's, Axel von Trott's, or Hans Bernd von Haeften's passport cheap let me know!

Thanks

Colin

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End of an era -Ewald Heinrich von Kleist, last survivor of the Stauffenberg bomb plot, passed last Friday March 8.. RIP Herr von Kleist!

http://www.businessweek.com/news/2013-03-12/von-kleist-last-survivor-from-plot-to-kill-hitler-dies-at-90

His was the only signature in my collection that was signed for me personally and for that reason it will always gave a special place.

Colin

Edited by ColinRF

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Dr. Hans Bernd Gisevius (July 14, 1904 - February 23, 1974)

Yesterday I received a parcel containing a first 1947 edition of a memoir titled "To the Bitter End," being the first English translation of the post-war memoir of Hans Bernd Gisevius, a central figure in the German Resistance and one of its very few survivors. The memoir suffers from serious flaws well-known to historians in the field, not the least of which is his consistently jaundiced view of Stauffenberg, likely the result of Gisevius own resentments and jealousy. Gisevius' memoir is considered to be one of three key insiders’ accounts of the various plots and machinations of the various factions that plotted against the Nazis from 1933 to 1944, the others being "The von Hassell Diaries" by Ulrich von Hassell and the "Secret War against Hitler" by Fabian von Schlabrendorff. Gisevius’ book has the advantage of covering the history of the resistance from the Nazi seizure of power to July 20, 1944 and the period following.

I have owned a copy of Gisevius' work for years. But this one is special - it’s actually signed by him. To the front flyleaf of the book is pasted a dedication to a couple named Lois and Jim Perryman from 1955. When I saw it for sale on the net, I hesitated for about 3 seconds before buying it given it had a very reasonable asking price. I have been looking for a Gisevius signature for my collection for years now and to find one affixed to a first edition of his excellent book is an extra treat.

Gisevius’ post-war reputation was significantly tainted by several factors including: his unfavourable depiction of resistance icon Claus von Stauffenberg; his friendship and vigorous defense of the reputation of senior police officer and Einsatz Group B head Arthur Nebe; his general views on the guilt of the German people expressed in the witness box at Nuremburg (where he testified against Göring and for Schacht) and finally, his personal contacts with Allied intelligence which resulted in his survival while so many others died. As a result, Gisevius spent many years after WWII residing in Switzerland and the US, rather than in Germany.

After graduating law school, Gisevius began his civil service career in the Prussian political police shortly after the Nazis’ seizure of power but before the force’s late 1933 transition into the tool of suppression that would come to be known as the Gestapo. He was an early resister, souring on the Gestapo after suffering some career blocks when he disagreed frequently with Gestapo chief Rudolf Diels and after suspecting Nazi crimes in the commission of the 1933 Reichstag Fire and the 1934 “Night of the Long Knives.” After being discharged from the new secret police force, Gisevius moved the Interior Ministry where he continued to perform more or less official police functions until Himmler was put in charge of all policing. He kept up close relations with his friend Arthur Nebe, chief of the Kripo (criminal police or German CID-equivalent) and through Nebe he was kept up to date with Himmler and Heydrich’s plotting to remove generals Blomberg and Fritsch in 1938. Later in 1938, Gisevius became actively involved in Hans Oster’s 1938 conspiracy to arrest and kill Hitler during the Czech crisis in the interest of avoiding a world war.

As a fully committed member of the German covert opposition, Gisevius began gathering evidence of Nazi crimes for use in a potential prosecution of Hitler. This material found its way into the comprehensive secret archive known as the “Zossen archive” and maintained by Hans von Dohnanyi and Werner Schrader.

Gisevius’ background as a Gestapo official with an antipathy to the Nazis made him a natural candidate for recruitment into Admiral Wilhelm Canaris’ military counter intelligence organization, the Abwehr. He established close relationships with Canaris’ second in command, Hans Oster, and he worked to position the Abwehr as a restraint on the increasing power of Heinrich Himmler and the SS. Gisevius was involved in the 1939 and 1943 plots against Hitler and he was assigned to the consulate in Zurich for intelligence duty. Canaris arranged for Gisevius to be appointed Vice Consul in Switzerland, where he met with and established a close relationship with Office of Strategic Services (OSS, later CIA) head Allen Dulles in 1943. IN this role Gisevius served as the primary liaison between the western allies and the German opposition to Hitler. He had close ties to Generaloberst Ludwig Beck, Admiral Canaris, and ex- Leipzig Mayor Carl Goerdeler. He was heavily involved in secret talks with the Vatican.

On one of his return trips to Germany he was detained by the Gestapo and subsequently released. In 1944, he bravely returned secretly to Germany to be take part in the July bomb plot and coup attempt. Gisevius was on the conspirators’ cabinet list to serve as State Secretary in the event of a successful coup. Present at the Bendlerstrasse on July 20, he watched with frustration as the coup started to lose traction and as the professionals of the General Staff showed that they were amateurs at conspiracy. Observing the failing momentum as the afternoon wore on, he commented to Stauffenberg “don’t you see what kind of duds you have around you here?” He argued to Stauffenberg that the coup needed a “some corpses now” to get it back on track and he recommended that an assault group of lower officers and troops be sent to the Prinzalbrechtstrasse and the Propaganda Ministry to shoot Heinrich Mueller and Goebbels. Stauffenberg agreed but by the time Colonel Jaeger could be sent the tables had turned with the defection of the Guard Battalion.

When the coup had clearly failed, Gisevius managed to exit the Bendlerstrasse and go underground in Berlin. He first hid at the home of his future wife, Swiss national Gerda Woog, and he eventually managed to flee to Switzerland in early 1945, with the assistance of a passport that had originally belonged to Carl Deichmann, the brother-in-law of Helmuth James Graf von Moltke. The passport was doctored by US intelligence in Switzerland and Gisevius was able to make the hair-raising trip across the border, just as the Gestapo was closing in. As a result, he was one of the few conspirators to survive the war and he probably knew the most of all of them about the conspiracy’s inner workings.

Gisevius served as a key witness for the prosecution at the Nuremberg Trials in the case against Hermann Göring, his former boss in the Prussian Ministry of the Interior. He also testified against Keitel and Kaltenbrunner. In the cases against Hjalmar Schacht and Wilhelm Frick, he served for the defence. In his memoir Bis zum bitteren Ende, ("To the Bitter End"), published in German in 1946, he provided an effective condemnation of the Nazi revolution and leadership and he commented on the failings of the German people as a whole, claiming that they only pretended not to know about the atrocities being committed. In 1946, Gisevius was charged by the Swiss authorities but acquitted in a trial for espionage. Post-war he wrote a defense of his friend Arthur Nebe but he did not wholly succeed in revising Nebe’s soiled reputation. Gisevius died in Müllheim in Baden-Württemberg in 1974.

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Edited by ColinRF

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Dr. Hans Bernd Gisevius (July 14, 1904 - February 23, 1974)

Yesterday I received a parcel containing a first 1947 edition of a memoir titled "To the Bitter End," being the first English translation of the post-war memoir of Hans Bernd Gisevius, a central figure in the German Resistance and one of its very few survivors. The memoir suffers from serious flaws well-known to historians in the field, not the least of which is his consistently jaundiced view of Stauffenberg, likely the result of Gisevius own resentments and jealousy. Gisevius' memoir is considered to be one of three key insiders’ accounts of the various plots and machinations of the various factions that plotted against the Nazis from 1933 to 1944, the others being "The von Hassell Diaries" by Ulrich von Hassell and the "Secret War against Hitler" by Fabian von Schlabrendorff. Gisevius’ book has the advantage of covering the history of the resistance from the Nazi seizure of power to July 20, 1944 and the period following.

Terrific addition, Colin. Congrats.

End of an era -Ewald Heinrich von Kleist, last survivor of the Stauffenberg bomb plot, passed last Friday March 8.. RIP Herr von Kleist!

http://www.businessweek.com/news/2013-03-12/von-kleist-last-survivor-from-plot-to-kill-hitler-dies-at-90

His was the only signature in my collection that was signed for me personally and for that reason it will always gave a special place.

Colin

Sad indeed. I had not heard. Thanks to you, my friend, I can echo that last sentiment. RIP.

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Thanks Paul - nice to hear from you . I am not picking up many new signatures these days but couldn't pass this up for the price.

Colin

Edited by ColinRF

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Just found this citation in Fortress Publications' complete Dietrich Bonhoeffer Works - Ecumenical, Academic, and Pastoral Work, 1931-1932 Volume 11, released last year. I had previously provided a copy of my Bonhoeffer postcard (see the first page of this string) to the International Bonhoeffer Society, where it was included on the front page of their newsletter a few years ago.

The footnote here provides more info the provenance and provides me with the source for the original transcription.

I also include the original scans of the postcard for context.


Colin

Edited by ColinRF

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Chris:

Never seen one and know of no collector who has one. I expect it would be one of the harder Widerstand signatures to get given his position as 2ic in the Abwehr. Most of the paper he would have signed likely would have been confidential and I can't see him signing many award documents. I think the only option would be an early one before his Abwehr career or a personal item, perhaps from within the family.

Schmolt had one on offer a few years ago but it was a different Oster who they had misattributed - they withdrew the item.

His Ausweiss was on WAF a year or so ago. I attach a photo of it that may or may not show his signature.


Colin

Edited by ColinRF

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Makes sense....if you see two, keep me in mind. :-)

Colin

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Obit for Clarita von Trott zu Solz. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/obituaries/clarita-von-trott-activist-whose-husband-was-executed-for-plotting-to-assassinate-hitler-8583564.html With the passing of Clarita von Trott zu Solz, the wife of Adam von Trott, the last living link with the German Resistance and the July Plot has gone.

RIP

Colin

Edited by ColinRF

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Thanks - there are not too many von Boeselager signatures around but Remer sold his like candy after the war. He is dead common.

Colin

Edited by ColinRF

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This is a post-war affidavit signed by Oberstleutnant Werner Schrader's wife, Cornelia (or as he called her "Nela"). The document was sworn by Schrader's wife in 1955. In common with other survivors of the Widerstand, Cornelia was applying for a civil death certificate, a prerequisite to getting a pension. Adenauer had only then reinstated pension rights to survivors of the July plot.

Cornelia Schrader was custodian of several confidential documents secreted at Gross Denkte by her husband Werner on behalf of the resistance, including a complete copy of Admiral Canaris' personal diary. After Schrader's July 28, 1944 suicide, Cornelia burned these documents to protect Canaris and others - a major loss to the historical record. To no avail as another full copy was found in a safe at OKH HQ in Zossen in April 1945. That second discovery led directly to the executions of the members of the Canaris group. This copy was burned by the SS in the last days of the war.

Cornelia is representative of the lesser known wives of the major resisters who shared in the risks of their husbands' conspiratorial activities.

Declaration

My husband, Lieutenant-colonel Werner Schrader, born 7.3.1895 in Rottorf, Helmstadt district, deceased on 28.7.1944 in the headquarters of the supreme command of the army, at that time in the Zossen, by suicide (shot in the head). Death took place in connection with the political events 20th of July 1944. In connection with his death, a certificate of death was issued to me.

Immediately after death his corpse was seized. The death room was sealed, the married dwelling at Berlin W 62, Keithstrasse 12 was also sealed. All possessions were confiscated by the state. I did not see the corpse and I also did not participate in a funeral.

The Gestapo forbade me to provide facts concerning the death of my husband officially or in private. Written reports of the authorities which concerned the estate carried the label "secret state matter" and a reference that it concerned a "state secret", infringement of which was punished according to the legal regulations for high and state treason. I have these facts by collecting original documents by hand at the compensation authority in Brunswick. For this reason a civil recording of his death was omitted.

I swear that these facts are the absolute truth.

Wolfenbuettel, Dr. Heinr. Jasper Str. 76

30 December 1955

CORNELIA SCHRADER (nee KRACKE)

Mrs. Cornelia Schrader (nee Kracke)

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Edited by ColinRF

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Thanks Bill. Welcome aboard this excellent and well managed collector's site.

Cheers

Colin

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