ADOLF HITLER PERSONALLY-OWNED N.S.D.A.P. BULLION EAGLE PATCH
A superlative personal Hitler item, a large, brilliantly embroidered N.S.D.A.P. eagle with swastika patch recovered from Hitler's Munich apartment by an American soldier, possibly Jewish, and apparently on the very day Hitler committed suicide. The eagle measures 7.5 in. wide and 5.2 in. tall and is (ironically) identical to those used on sashes offered by Hitler at funerals of the most important German military officers and civilians. It is constructed of heavy gold bullion applied to a red felt backing, and bears a black cloth mobile swastika at the bottom, trimmed in gold wire and set on a white gabardine field. The reverse bears a protective paper covering, and the patch appears to be unused. We speculate it was kept on hand for sentimental reasons, or perhaps for emergency use. This piece has a well-known provenance. On or about April 30, 1945, Lt. Philip Ben Lieber of the 692nd Tank Destroyer Battalion was one of the first soldiers to enter the private Munich apartment of Adolf Hitler at Prinzregentenplatz 16. He seized the best 'souvenirs' he could find, including Hitler's visor cap and Nazi 'brown shirt', his 'Blood Order' and other medals, a portrait of Hitler's mother, a shaving mug (previously sold by us), and this impressive patch. Lieber's discovery was heralded in newspapers at the time and was examined by respected dealer Ben Swearingen III. In the meantime, in 1970, the balance of Lieber's collection was purchased by Mohawk Arms and then resold to dealers Wolfe-Hardin in 1994. At some point prior to 2014, Wolfe-Hardin also purchased other Lieber items in the collection of David Mathes. In 2014, Wolfe-Hardin sold the Lieber Collection in its entirety to dealer Craig Gottlieb, from whom our consignor purchased this relic. Included with the patch is an original affidavit citing the origin of the patch, signed by prominent Third Reich militaria dealers Stephen Wolfe, his business partner Neil Hardin, and Craig Gottlieb.