ADOLF HITLER'S PRESENTATION AGATE JEWELRY BOX
A fine, intimate Adolf Hitler personal item, a small agate-adorned jewelry box taken from his Munich apartment by an American soldier and member of the 692nd Tank Destroyer Battalion. The box, which measures 3 5/8 in. wide, 2 5/8 in. deep and 2 1/8 in. tall, is constructed of finished oak. The hinged top has brass edging enclosing nine pieces of rectangular shaped, polished agate, the center piece engraved 'Karlsbad' (today Karlovy Vary in the Czech Republic). Karlsbad, in the Sudetenland, was a city known for the production of Karlsbad Sprudelstein, a kind of agate-like material properly called 'aragonite'. The box is lined in a lighter finished wood, likely pine, and a small engraved brass plaque is nailed to the underside of the lid. It reads (in Sutterlin): 'Unserem Fuhrer Adolf Hitler in Treue und Dankbarkeit Die Nat. Soz. Jugend Karlsbad' ('(To) our Fuhrer Adolf Hitler with Loyalty and Gratefulness (from) The National Socialist Youth (of) Karlsbad'). There is a lock fitted to the box, still operable, and two keys are present. 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 jewelry box which Lieber claimed contained Hitlers World War I Iron Cross and Nazi Party pin at the time of its discovery. 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 jewelry box is an original affidavit citing the origin of the box, signed by prominent Third Reich militaria dealers Stephen Wolfe, his business partner Neil Hardin, and Craig Gottlieb. Interesting to note that this rather unimposing box gifted to Hitler by children was of such importance to the ruthless dictator.