Unseen Adolf Hitler photos sold at auction

Wednesday 19 January 2011 17.43
Adolf Hitler - Photos said to show rise of the Nazi party
Adolf Hitler - Photos said to show rise of the Nazi party

A collection of previously unseen photographs of Adolf Hitler has sold in Britain for £30,000 (€35,800), an auctioneer has said.

The 600 pictures and 800 negatives were taken by Hitler's personal photographer Heinrich Hoffmann during the Nazi party's rise to power before World War II.

The photos, including one of Hitler meeting Italian fascist leader Benito Mussolini, had been privately owned for decades until now.

They include shots of Hitler attending a training school for SS officers and giving the Nazi salute from his car during a rally at Nuremburg, said auctioneer Jonathan Humbert, based in the central English town of Towcester.

Hitler is also shown meeting Mussolini in Munich and at the 1936 Olympics in the photographs.

'I was astonished by the interest we had in the photographs, even from Germany,' Mr Humbert said.

'They provided a never seen before insight into the rise of the Nazi party, and some personal views of Hitler himself.'

Hoffmann joined the Nazi party in 1920 and was selected by Hitler as his official photographer, with his images published as postage stamps, postcards, posters and picture books.

He introduced Hitler to his photographic assistant Eva Braun, the woman who would eventually become the Nazi leader's mistress.

US forces arrested Hoffmann in 1945 and seized a large archive of his photographs. Hoffmann was sentenced to four years in jail for profiteering and died in 1957.