Alexander Historical Auctions LLC

Lot 785

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A large, custom-made deluxe leather presentation folder which once held a portfolio of art prints by Duesseldorf artists presented by the Gauleiter of Duesseldorf, Karl Florian, to Adolf Hitler on Christmas, 1943. The portfolio measures 28 x 18 in. fully opened, with hinged leaves which close to secure the contents. The covers are constructed with an inner field of blue leather with borders of red leather trimmed with gilt bands and swastikas. Gilt lettering of the cover reads: 'Duesseldorfer Kunstmappe 1943'. Within, Gauleiter FRIEDRICH KARL FLORIAN (1894-1975) inscribed the gift: 'My Fuhrer as Christmas greetings, in gratitude and loyalty. War year 1943 Florian, Gauleiter'. The case is worn at the extremities, with small tears at the ends of the spine, still entirely presentable. An aviator during World War I, Florian joined the Freikorps post-war and by 1929 was Gauleiter of Duesseldorf, where he remained in power until war's end. A de-nazification court sentenced him to six years in prison. Undoubtedly, this folder once held beautiful images of this Westphalian city on the Rhine, but realistically, the city was a major target for Allied bombers. By May 1945, a total of 243 air raids had destroyed 86,500 dwellings and 51 percent of the city lay in ruins.

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October 29, 2020 10:00 AM EDT

Chesapeake City, MD, US

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