Thursday, May 24, 2007

A good friend of the house of Wagner


BBC News reports ~ Photographs of Adolf Hitler - taken by a Nottinghamshire spy weeks before the start of World War II - have been made public for the first time. Charles Turner took the images at the Wagner Festival in Bayreuth, Germany in July 1939. He was given unprecedented access to the Nazi leader, and toured the festival as part of his entourage.

The photographs have been released by Mr Turner's son David, 64, after he began researching his family history. Mr Turner, of West Bridgford, told the Nottingham Evening Post that his father had chatted to the German leader and other members of the Third Reich - including Joseph Goebbels and Rudolf Hess - as the party toured the festival. They assumed Mr Turner - a guest of a member of Hitler's inner circle - was merely a fellow music fan.

Mr Turner said: "My father regarded these photos as an extraordinary souvenir of a remarkable and fortuitous event. "They are very, very important to me and my family and for all this period of time - my father died in 1977 - I have regarded the possession of these photos as an intimate family matter. "My father never spoke to me about it. Only he could answer why. That's not to say I didn't know what happened but as a child your perception and awareness of things are very different," he said.

He said he made the decision to release the images to the newspaper, which were taken on a Kodak Eastman folding camera, when he began to trace his family's roots. Charles Turner sent a detailed report of his meet back to London. His son has been told by the Home Office that the document is still classified and may never be released.


From BBC News. My header photo is not one of the spy photos, but comes from Winifred Wagner, A Life at the Heart of Hitler’s Bayreuth by Brigitte Hamann which I reviewed in my article The Phantom of the Opera, and which also supplies my headline quote. Elsewhere read how Hitler said Wagner - I don't get to hear anything else. And view more extraordinary photos from the Third Reich discovered via An Overgrown Path.
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