Hunting Hitler Part IV: The Bunker (Afternoon, April 30)

Today’s post was written by Dr. Greg Bradsher, Archivist at the National Archives at College Park. This is the fourth blog in a multi-part series.

On April 30, in his bunker, Adolf Hitler lunched with his secretaries Gertrude Junge and Frau Gerda Christian and the vegetarian cook Fraulein Constanze Manzialy from 1pm till 2pm. Eva Braun did not join them. During the meal Hitler appeared calm and under control and told the women this was the last time they would eat together. Little of importance was said and there was no mention of the impending suicide. [1]  

After lunch Junge found a room where she could sit down and smoke a cigarette. Then she went to Braun’s private quarters and found her sorting out and preparing to give away most of her belongings as final gifts. She gave Junge her most valuable fur, saying “here’s a present for next winter and your life after the war. I wish you all the luck in the world. And when you put it on, always remember me and give my very best to our native Bavaria-das schoene Bayern.” (Bavaria the beautiful). Then Junge visited Frau Magda Goebbels, who was quite upset about the fate of her children [that she planned to poison, rather than have them fall into Russian hands].[2]

Hitler, meanwhile, after lunch, met with Martin Bormann. Bormann emerged into the antechamber from Hitler’s study and went straight up to Otto Guensche and told him that Hitler and Braun wanted to bring their lives to an end that day. Their bodies were to be drenched in petrol and burned in the garden of the Chancellery. That was Hitler’s categorical order. Under no circumstances should his body fall into Russian hands. Bormann asked Guensche to make sure that everything was made ready for the burning of the bodies and to make sure the bodies were burned. Guensche said he would take care of things. Shortly after getting the instructions from Bormann, Hitler came out of his room and told Guensche that he would now shoot himself and that Braun would also depart this life. He did not want to fall into the hands of the Russians either alive or dead. The bodies were to be burnt. He wished that nothing should remain of himself, so that the Russians could not desecrate his body or display it in any way. Hitler charged Guensche with the necessary preparations. The way he expressed it, Guensche would be personally responsible for this. Guensche assured Hitler that he would carry out his orders. [3]      

A few minutes later Johann Rattenhuber, and Hitler’s personal pilots, Hans Baur and George Betz, made their way, distraught, into the antechamber. They had just run into Bormann and learned from him that Hitler wanted to take his own life. Now they assailed Guensche with questions. He was just going to answer when the door opened and Hitler came out. Rattenhuber, Baur, Guensche, and Betz gave a Nazi salute. Hitler did not react but in a tired voice merely asked them to come closer. Hitler said “I have ordered that I am to be burned after my death. Make sure that my order is carried out to the letter. I will not have it that they take my body back to Moscow to exhibit in a cabinet of curiosities.” Hitler gave a lethargic gesture of farewell with his right arm and turned round and disappeared behind his study door. [4]

But Hitler then summoned Baur and Betz to his quarters. They entered the small study. Hitler clasped Baur’s hand with both of his and said in an emotional voice, “Baur, I’d like to bid you farewell!” Hitler told him that “My generals have betrayed me and sold me out, my soldiers don’t want to go on, and I cannot go on!” Baur again tried to convince Hitler that he could still fly him to Argentina, Japan, Japanese-held Manchukuo in Asia, or to friendly Arabs. But Hitler shook his head and explained that if he went to Berchtesgaden or to join Adm. Karl Doenitz in Flensburg, he would be in the same situation again within two weeks. According to Baur, Hitler said, “I will stand or fall with Berlin. A person must have the courage to suffer the consequences of his actions. I will take my own life, today!” Hitler thanked Baur for his long years of service and then presented him, as a gift, his favorite portrait of Frederick the Great by Anton Graf. It was the painting that Baur had carried from one headquarters to another during the war. [5]

Meanwhile Guensche began carrying out Hitler’s and Bormann’s orders. Around 230pm he called Erich Kempka (Hitler’s long-time chauffeur and head of the motor pool), who was living in the bunker next to the Chancellery garage, and asked him to bring ten jerricans (a German petrol-can contained 4.5 gallons) of petrol to the Fuehrer bunker immediately and to leave it in readiness at the emergency exit to the garden behind the Chancellery, and then report to him. To Kempka’s question as to why the petrol was needed, Guensche replied that he could not tell him over the phone. Kempka protested that it would be difficult to find so large a quantity at such short notice, but was told that it must be found. Ultimately he found most of what had been requested and it was quickly delivered to the designated spot.[6]

Soon afterwards Guensche, not wanting any casual observer to witness the final scene, ordered the SS men of the bodyguard and the Security Service who occupied the little room by the emergency exit to vacate the room and find another place. He even ordered the sentries who stood by the armor-plated door which led from the stairway to the emergency exit to go back into the bunker. Just one man, SS-Untersturmfuehrer Hofbeck, did Guensche leave by the emergency exit with the order to let no one pass. Then Guensche went into the hall of the bunker and took up his position by the antechamber door. His watch read 310pm. [7]

The final goodbyes came about 315pm, when Hitler and Braun made their last appearance in the main corridor of the lower Bunker, to say farewell to what was left of the Reich Chancellery Group. Present were Joseph Goebbels, Bormann, Hans Krebs, Wilhelm Burgdorf, Walter Hewel, Hans-Erich Voss, Dr. Haase, Rattenhuber, SS Staf. Hoegl, Heinz Linge, Guensche, Frau Christian, Frauelein Else Krueger, Frauelein Manzialy, and Werner Naumann.  He shook hands with each person and apparently, in a weak voice, mumbled something to some of them. While Hitler was saying his final goodbyes, Guensche found Junge and told her that Hitler wanted to say goodbye to her. She met him in the central corridor. He shook her hand. Junge said “it seemed as if he were not looking at me…I had the feeling he was not really seeing me.” He said a few words which she did not understand, but thought it was “All the best,” or something like that. Then Braun, very much composed, took leave of the gathering. She embraced Junge and said “see to it that you manage to get through to Munich and give my love to Bavaria.” Hitler and Braun then retired to Hitler’s study.[8] 

After speaking with Hitler and Braun, Junge, not wanting to be present during the suicides, not wanting to see the corpses, went quickly to the upper bunker where the Goebbels’ six children were playing. She occupied herself with the children, getting something for them to eat and calming them. [9]

Meanwhile, Guensche continued making arrangements. He contacted Hoegl, Schaedle, Lindloff, Reiser, and perhaps another officer or two of Hitler’s escort commando and had them posted in the upper Bunker. Their imminent task, he told them, would be to carry the two corpses out of the lower Bunker outside into the garden. Guensche then cleared the lower part of the Fuehrerbunker of all persons not belonging to the immediate circle and put a guard on the staircase leading to the upper part of the bunker with orders not to let anyone in any more. He gave the same order to Hofbeck, who was standing guard on the garden exit. He then returned and stationed himself directly before the door to the Hitler apartment to stand guard.[10]   

A little later, Braun came out of Hitler’s study into the small antechamber. She looked sad as she gave Linge her hand and said, “Goodbye, Linge. I hope that you get away from Berlin. If you run into my sister Gretl, don’t tell her how her husband died.” After thanking him for everything he had done for Hitler, she went to Frau Goebbels, who was in her husband’s room, where she had remained all day, agonizing over the impending death of her children. A few minutes later Braun left Goebbels’s room and went to the telephone exchange, where Guensche was to be found. She said to him, “Please tell the Fuehrer that Frau Goebbels has asked him to come to see her one more time.” Depending upon the sources, either Hitler went to Dr. Goebbels’ room to see Frau Goebbels or she was able to enter Hitler’s study to talk to him. In either case she begged Hitler not to take his life but escape to Berchtesgaden. Hitler said he had no other recourse than committing suicide and refused to discuss the matter further. He then thanked her for her commitment and services. Sobbing and trembling, she then left the room, walked past her husband in the corridor without speaking and went to the upper Bunker. Hitler then turned to Dr. Goebbels, who begged Hitler briefly to allow the Hitler Youth to take him out of Berlin. Hitler responded brusquely “Doctor, you know my decision. This is no change! You can of course leave Berlin with your family.” Goebbels replied that he would not do so. He intended to stay in Berlin and die there. Hitler then said to him, “I entrust you with the responsibility to see that our corpses are burned immediately.” Hitler then shook his hand, and returned to his room, where he was soon joined by Braun, who said goodbye to Guensche on her way back from Dr. Goebbels’ room. It was about 340pm when Guensche took up position in front of Hitler’s door.[11]

Before Hitler entered the room, Linge asked Hitler if he might say goodbye to him and ask if Hitler had any orders for him. Hitler said “Linge, I am going to shoot myself now. You know what you have to do.” Hitler then told him that “I have given orders to break out. Try to fight your way through to the west in small groups.” Either at this point, or perhaps earlier in the afternoon, Hitler had told Linge to take charge of things immediately after his death and it was he who was to give the word when to enter the death room. Linge gave the Nazi salute, they shook hands, and as Hitler entered the room he told Linge to wait at least ten minutes and then to enter if he had heard no sound. Linge lost his composure completely and raced up all the steep steps of the emergency-exit staircase, and out into the courtyard, where he ran into sharp artillery fire. Then, just as promptly, he ran back down the steps, speechless and wild-eyed. He then took up a position near Guensche who was guarding the door. [12]

Meanwhile, Arthur Axmann, head of the Hitler Youth came to the bunker to see the Goebbels. Dr. Goebbels told him that at that moment Hitler had already retired to his room to commit suicide along with Braun. Axmann desired to bid Hitler a personal farewell, but Guensche told him the Führer would admit nobody and refused to open the door. [13]   

Axmann then joined with Krebs, Burgdorf, Bormann, Naumann, Rattenhuber, Stumpfegger, Hewel, and Goebbels in the conference room. They talked about Hitler’s saying goodbye and in a very agitated state waited for the suicides to take place.[14]  

Sometime between 345pm and 4pm there were at different times at least six people almost as near the door to Hitler’s quarters as Guensche: Goebbels, Bormann, Linge, Krebs, Burgdorf, and Axmann and maybe one or two others. When not near the door, they were gathered in the nearby conference room. While Goebbels thought he may have heard a shot, the others did not. Guensche believed that none of them heard a shot, because of the sealed double doors. “Both these doors,” he said, “were fireproof, gasproof, hence soundproof.” Other witnesses argued that it was impossible to distinguish specific sounds over the constant pounding of the diesel engines and the humming of the ventilator fans in the bunker. [15]

In any event, after ten minutes or so (at a few minutes before 4pm), in keeping with Hitler’s instructions to wait that long before entering his room, Linge remarked to Guensche “I think it’s over” and went into the outer room. The strong fumes made his eyes smart. Choking, Linge closed and locked the door and then turned back to summon Bormann. “Frankly, I was trembling,” Linge says, “and I simply did not have the gumption to go in there by myself. It was too eerie.” Linge went to the conference room and told Bormann that he had entered the room and smelled gas from a discharged firearm. Immediately Bormann followed Linge to the door, opened it and they went into the room, gasping from toxic fumes.  According to Linge, Bormann “turned white as chalk and stared at me helplessly.” [16]    

Guensche entered the room after Linge and Bormann. He went to the conference room and told its occupants that Hitler was dead. Goebbels and Axmann, with Guensche, then went to Hitler’s outer room and entered it. They then joined Bormann and Linge in Hitler’s study.[17]    

Once in Hitler’s study Linge, Bormann, Axmann, Goebbels, and Guensche found that the room smelled of gunpowder, smoke and bitter almonds. They saw the bodies seated on the blue and white sofa standing against the wall opposite the door from the antechamber. Hitler was slumped at the right hand armrest of the sofa (left hand as the witnesses viewed it). His head was inclined to the right and slightly forward and his eyes open. In Hitler’s right temple gaped a bullet wound the size of a small coin. Form this spot a streaked trail of blood ran down to about the middle of his cheek. Hitler’s lower right arm was between the armrest of the sofa and his right thigh, and his open hand lay on his right knee, palm upwards. The left hung at his side. His feet were on the floor. They were pointing forwards and were about 12 to 15 inches apart. Next to Hitler’s right foot lay a 7.65mm Walther pistol, and next to his left foot a 6.35mm Walther pistol. On the carpet next to the sofa a puddle of blood the size of a plate had formed. The rear wall and the sofa were bespattered with blood. Next to Hitler was a dead Braun, with her head near, or resting on his left shoulder. She was wearing a blue dress, and showed no signs of injuries or blood. She was in the snug position she had assumed before swallowing the poison. Her upper body rested against the back of the sofa, the head was upright. Her legs were drawn up under her on the sofa. Her brightly colored high-heeled shoes stood side by side on the floor in front of the sofa. Her eyes were open and her bluish lips were firmly pressed together. [18]  

Linge immediately left the room and fetched the two woolen military blankets he had left in the antechamber to wrap Hitler up in. Goebbels, Bormann, Axmann, and Guensche remained with the bodies for several minutes in silence. Guensche finally snapped out of the trance and directed Linge, who had returned, to move aside the two chairs and the table, in order to spread the blankets onto the floor. While Linge was spreading out the blankets, Guensche went to get Hoegel, Schaedle, Lindloff, Reiser, whom he had put on call to be ready to assist with the bodies. Apparently, Bormann also left the room to call other people to lend a hand. Meanwhile, Dr. Stumpfegger arrived. He examined both bodies and pronounced Hitler and Braun dead. Goebbels and Axmann were wordless spectators to the activities taking place. Linge spread one of the blankets on the study floor in front of the sofa, and with the help of Bormann, or another person, he laid Hitler’s body on the ground and wrapped him in the blanket. Linge then called out to one of the others present that the blanket for Braun was in Hitler’s bedroom. The person he addressed in this manner was already occupied with her body. He does not remember who it was. [19]  

The next activities would be getting the bodies out of the bunker and then cremating them in the garden.


Footnotes

[1] Memorandum, Karl Sussman, CIC Special Agent, Region IV, Garmish Sub-Region, Headquarters Counter Intelligence Corps, United States Forces European Theater to Commanding Officer, Garmish Sub-Region, Subject: Interrogation of Junge, Gertrude, August 30, 1946, p. 5, File: XA085512, Junge, Gertrude,  Intelligence and Investigative Dossiers Personal Files, 1977-2004 (NAID 645054), Record Group 319, (the Junge file, while part of the Army CIC Personal Files is described with another National Archives Identifying Number: 12191624); [Interrogation of] Gertraud [Gertrude] Junge, Munich, February 7, 1948, p. 45, Interrogations of Hitler Associates, Musmanno Collection, Gumberg Library Digital Collections, Duquesne University; Trevor-Roper, The Last Days of Hitler, pp. 199-200; Fest, Inside Hitler’s Bunker, p. 111; O’Donnell, The Berlin Bunker, pp. 247-248; Joachimsthaler, The Last Days of Hitler, pp. 150-151.

[2] Memorandum, Karl Sussman, CIC Special Agent, Region IV, Garmish Sub-Region, Headquarters Counter Intelligence Corps, United States Forces European Theater to Commanding Officer, Garmish Sub-Region, Subject: Interrogation of Junge, Gertrude, August 30, 1946, p. 5, File: XA085512, Junge, Gertrude,  Intelligence and Investigative Dossiers Personal Files, 1977-2004 (NAID 645054), Record Group 319, (the Junge file, while part of the Army CIC Personal Files is described with another National Archives Identifying Number: 12191624); [Interrogation of] Gertraud [Gertrude] Junge, Munich, February 7, 1948, p. 45, Interrogations of Hitler Associates, Musmanno Collection, Gumberg Library Digital Collections, Duquesne University; O’Donnell, The Berlin Bunker, p. 248.

[3] Eberle and Uhl, eds., The Hitler Book, p. 268; Joachimsthaler, The Last Days of Hitler, pp. 143-145; von Lang,  The Secretary, p. 329.

[4] Evidence of the Head of Hitler’s Bodyguard Hans Rattenhuber, Moscow, May 20, 1945 in Vinogrado, Pogonyi, and Teptzov, Hitler’s Death, p. 194; Manuscript Statement by Hitler’s Aide-de-Camp, Otto Guensch, May 17, 1945 in Vinogrado, Pogonyi, and Teptzov, Hitler’s Death, pp. 163-164; Eberle and Uhl, eds., The Hitler Book, pp. 268-269; Joachimsthaler, The Last Days of Hitler, pp. 144-145.

[5] C. G. Sweeting, Hitler’s Personal Pilot: The Life and Times of Hans Baur (Washington, D.C.: Brassey’s, 2000), pp. 258, 264; O’Donnell, The Berlin Bunker, p. 247.

[6] Testimony of Mr. Erich Kempka on the last days of Hitler, Berchtesgaden, June 20, 1945, File: 3735-PS, United States Evidence Files, 1945-46, (NAID 305264), Record Group 238; Special Interrogation of Erich Kempka, at US Third Army Internment Camp No. 6, Moosburg, October 7, 1945, enclosure to Memorandum, Brigadier [no name given], Counter Intelligence Bureau (CIB), GSI (b), Headquarters, British Army of the Rhine to Assistant Chief of Staff, G-2 (CI), Headquarters, US Forces European Theater, Subject: Investigation into the Death of Hitler, November 22, 1945, Document No. CIB/B3/PF.582, File: Major Trevor-Roper Interrogations, Reports Relating to Prisoner of War Interrogations, 1943-1945, (NAID 2790598) Box 711, Captured Personnel and Material Branch, Records of the War Department General and Special Staff, Record Group 165; Strategic Services Unit, War Department, Intelligence Dissemination No. A-65458, Subject: Interview with Erna Flegel, Red Cross Nurse in Hitler’s Shelter, Date of Report: December 11, 1945, Distributed: February 25, 1946, File: 0240346, Army Intelligence Document Files, 1950-1955, (NAID 305269), Records of the Army Staff, Record Group 319; Historical Branch, War Department General Staff, G-2, Historical Interrogation Commission, Oberstrumbanfuehrer Erich Kempka, Chief Driver & Head of the Fuehrer’s Motor Pool, September 26, 1945, Third Army Intelligence Center, Lt. Col. O. J. Hale, Interrogator, File: Historical Interrogation Report, Reports Relating to Prisoner of War Interrogations, 1943-1945, (NAID 2790598) Box 711, Captured Personnel and Material Branch, Records of the War Department General and Special Staff, Record Group 165; Kempka, I Was Hitler’s Chauffeur, pp. 75-76; Trevor-Roper, The Last Days of Hitler, p. 200; Eberle and Uhl, eds., The Hitler Book, p. 269; Fest, Inside Hitler’s Bunker, p. 110; Joachimsthaler, The Last Days of Hitler, pp. 146-147, 206; Michael A. Musmanno, Ten Days to Die (Garden City, New York: Doubleday & Company, Inc., 1950), p. 214.

[7] Eberle and Uhl, eds., The Hitler Book, p. 269; Musmanno, Ten Days to Die, p. 214; Trevor-Roper, The Last Days of Hitler, p. 200.

[8] Memorandum, Karl Sussman, CIC Special Agent, Region IV, Garmish Sub-Region, Headquarters Counter Intelligence Corps, United States Forces European Theater to Commanding Officer, Garmish Sub-Region, Subject: Interrogation of Junge, Gertrude, August 30, 1946, p. 5, File: XA085512, Junge, Gertrude, Intelligence and Investigative Dossiers Personal Files, 1977-2004 (NAID 645054), Record Group 319, (the Junge file, while part of the Army CIC Personal Files is described with another National Archives Identifying Number: 12191624); [Interrogation of] Gertraud [Gertrude] Junge, Munich, February 7, 1948, pp. 45-47, Interrogations of Hitler Associates, Musmanno Collection, Gumberg Library Digital Collections, Duquesne University; Joachimsthaler, The Last Days of Hitler, pp. 150, 152, 153; O’Donnell, The Berlin Bunker, pp. 248-249; Musmanno, Ten Days to Die, pp. 215-216.

[9] Memorandum, Karl Sussman, CIC Special Agent, Region IV, Garmish Sub-Region, Headquarters Counter Intelligence Corps, United States Forces European Theater to Commanding Officer, Garmish Sub-Region, Subject: Interrogation of Junge, Gertrude, August 30, 1946, p. 5, File: XA085512, Junge, Gertrude, Intelligence and Investigative Dossiers Personal Files, 1977-2004 (NAID 645054), Record Group 319, (the Junge file, while part of the Army CIC Personal Files is described with another National Archives Identifying Number: 12191624); [Interrogation of] Gertraud [Gertrude] Junge, Munich, February 7, 1948, pp. 47-48, Interrogations of Hitler Associates, Musmanno Collection, Gumberg Library Digital Collections, Duquesne University; Junge, Until the Final Hour, p. 187.

[10] Fest, Inside Hitler’s Bunker, p. 112; O’Donnell, The Berlin Bunker, p. 250; Joachimsthaler, The Last Days of Hitler, pp. 152, 153, 155.

[11] Memorandum, Karl Sussman, CIC Special Agent in Charge and Arthur R. Clarke, Special Agent, CIC, Operations, Region IV, Garmish Sub-Region, Headquarters Counter Intelligence Corps, United States Forces European Theater to Officer in Charge, Subject: Junge, Gertrude, June 13, 1946, p. 6, File: XA085512, Junge, Gertrude, Intelligence and Investigative Dossiers Personal Files, 1977-2004 (NAID 645054), Record Group 319, (the Junge file, while part of the Army CIC Personal Files is described with another National Archives Identifying Number: 12191624); Linge, With Hitler to the End, p. 198; Eberle and Uhl, eds., The Hitler Book, pp. 269, 270; Trevor-Roper, The Last Days of Hitler, p. 200; Michael Musmanno, “Is Hitler Alive,” published in the Swiss newspaper Die Nation in issues 50, 51, and 52 of 1948 and issue 1 of 1949, in Vinogrado, Pogonyi, and Teptzov, Hitler’s Death, p. 323; Musmanno, Ten Days to Die, pp. 215, 216; Joachimsthaler, The Last Days of Hitler, p. 153; O’Donnell, The Berlin Bunker, pp. 250-251; Fest, Inside Hitler’s Bunker, pp. 114-115.

[12] Linge, With Hitler to the End, pp. 198-199; Fest, Inside Hitler’s Bunker, pp. 111-112; Eberle and Uhl, eds., The Hitler Book, p. 270; O’Donnell, The Berlin Bunker, pp. 249-250; Joachimsthaler, The Last Days of Hitler, pp. 151, 153.

[13] Interrogation of Arthur Axmann, Palace of Justice, Nuremberg, 1630-1930 hours, January 7, 1948, pp. 25-27. Interrogations of Hitler Associates, Musmanno Collection, Gumberg Library Digital Collections, Duquesne University; O’Donnell, The Berlin Bunker, p. 251; Fest, Inside Hitler’s Bunker, p. 115; Joachimsthaler, The Last Days of Hitler, p. 157.

[14] Interrogation of Arthur Axmann, Palace of Justice, Nuremberg, 1630-1930 hours, January 7, 1948, p. 27, Interrogations of Hitler Associates, Musmanno Collection, Gumberg Library Digital Collections, Duquesne University; Manuscript Statement by Hitler’s Aide-de-Camp, Otto Guensch, May 17, 1945 in Vinogrado, Pogonyi, and Teptzov, Hitler’s Death, p. 164; Joachimsthaler, The Last Days of Hitler, pp. 153, 155; Eberle and Uhl, eds., The Hitler Book, p. 270.

[15] O’Donnell, The Berlin Bunker, pp. 251-253; Joachimsthaler, The Last Days of Hitler, p. 156; Fest, Inside Hitler’s Bunker, p. 116.

[16] Linge, With Hitler to the End, p. 199; Eberle and Uhl, eds., The Hitler Book, pp. 270-271; O’Donnell, The Berlin Bunker, pp. 253, 254, 257; Joachimsthaler, The Last Days of Hitler, p. 154. Linge puts death at 350pm. He allegedly noted it by the grandfather clock in the antechamber to Hitler’s office, a clock he had always been at pains to keep running very accurately since Hitler himself took his time from this clock. Guensche puts the death at 330pm, claming to have looked at wristwatch. Joachimsthaler, The Last Days of Hitler, p. 153.

[17] Interrogation of Arthur Axmann, Palace of Justice, Nuremberg, 1630-1930 hours, January 7, 1948, pp. 27-29, Interrogations of Hitler Associates, Musmanno Collection, Gumberg Library Digital Collections, Duquesne University; Joachimsthaler, The Last Days of Hitler, pp. 154-156; Fest, Inside Hitler’s Bunker, p. 116-117; Eberle and Uhl, eds., The Hitler Book, p. 271.

[18] Interrogation of Arthur Axmann, Palace of Justice, Nuremberg, 1630-1930 hours, January 7, 1948, pp. 29, 30,  Interrogations of Hitler Associates, Musmanno Collection, Gumberg Library Digital Collections, Duquesne University; Linge, With Hitler to the End, p. 199; Trevor-Roper, The Last Days of Hitler, p. 201; Eberle and Uhl, eds., The Hitler Book, p. 271; O’Donnell, The Berlin Bunker, pp. 255, 257; Joachimsthaler, The Last Days of Hitler, pp. 155, 156, 157, 164, 167, 181; Fest, Inside Hitler’s Bunker, p. 116; Points emerging from special interrogation of Else Krueger, September 25, 1945, enclosure to Memorandum, Brigadier [no name given], Counter Intelligence Bureau (CIB), GSI (b), Headquarters, British Army of the Rhine to Assistant Chief of Staff, G-2 (CI), Headquarters, US Forces European Theater, Subject: Investigation into the Death of Hitler, November 22, 1945, Document No. CIB/B3/PF.582, File: Major Trevor-Roper Interrogations, Reports Relating to Prisoner of War Interrogations, 1943-1945, (NAID 2790598) Box 711, Record Group 165; Special Interrogation of Erich Kempka, at US Third Army Internment Camp No. 6, Moosburg, October 7, 1945, enclosure to Memorandum, Brigadier [no name given], Counter Intelligence Bureau (CIB), GSI (b), Headquarters, British Army of the Rhine to Assistant Chief of Staff, G-2 (CI), Headquarters, US Forces European Theater, Subject: Investigation into the Death of Hitler, November 22, 1945, ibid. Apparently as a precaution, Hitler had the smaller pistol nearby in case the heavier pistol, with which he was far less familiar, should jam. O’Donnell, The Berlin Bunker, p. 255; Linge, With Hitler to the End, p. 199; Joachimsthaler, The Last Days of Hitler, p. 180.

[19] Linge, With Hitler to the End, p. 199; Joachimsthaler, The Last Days of Hitler, pp. 156-157, 192; O’Donnell, The Berlin Bunker, pp. 257-258; Eberle and Uhl, eds., The Hitler Book, p. 271.

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