Tue Aug 25th, 2009 at 09:04:08 AM EST
Life magazine has published some remarkable, vividly creepy German WWII photos from its collection. They're very much worth a visit.
Adolf Hitler: Up Close - Photo Gallery, 17 Pictures - LIFE
Hugo Jaeger, one of Hitler's personal photographers, in 1970. Jaeger's story -- and the story of how LIFE came to own his photographs of Hitler -- is nothing short of astonishing. In 1945, when the Allies were making their final push toward Munich, Jaeger found himself face to face with six American soldiers in a small town west of the city. During a search of the house where Jaeger was staying, the Americans found a leather suitcase in which Jaeger had hidden thousands of color photo transparencies. He knew he would be arrested (or worse) if the Americans discovered his film and his close connection to Hitler. He could never have imagined what happened next.
The American soldiers threw open the suitcase that held the Hitler images. Inside, they found a bottle of cognac that Jaeger had placed atop the transparencies. Elated, the soldiers proceeded to share the bottle with Jaeger and the owner of the house.
The suitcase was forgotten.
More here on an independent site and on Life's original site.