In The LIFE of Adolf Hitler.

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Hitler.
1: Between 1936 and 1945, German photographer Hugo Jaeger was granted unprecedented access to Adolf Hitler, traveling and chronicling, in color, the Fuhrer and his confidants at small gatherings, public events, and, quite often, in private moments.

2: Hugo Jaeger: Photographer to Hitler
Hugo Jaeger, one of Hitler's personal photographers, in 1970. Jaeger's story 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.

3: Hitler Reviews the Troops, 1938
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. (Pictured: Tens of thousands of Nazi troops parade before Hitler in 1938, Nuremberg.)

4: A Nazi Christmas Party, 1941
After the Americans left, Jaeger packed the transparencies into 12 glass jars and buried them on the outskirts of town. In the years following the war, Jaeger occasionally returned to his multiple caches, digging them up, repacking, and reburying them. He finally retrieved the collection for good in 1955 -- 2,000 transparencies, all of them, amazingly, still in good shape -- stored them in a bank vault, and in 1965 sold them to LIFE. To date, only a fraction of the Jaeger collection has been published. (Pictured: Adolf Hitler and other Nazi officials attend a Christmas Party in 1941, at the height of the second World War.)

5: Hitler's Extravagant Birthday Gifts
In the late '30s, very few photographers were using color. Hugo Jaeger was an early adopter and Hitler liked what he saw. "The future," Hitler once said to Jaeger, "belongs to color photography." (Pictured: A hand-worked castle inlaid with precious stones, given to Hitler for his 50th birthday, April 20, 1939.)

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6: Hitler and the Totalitarian State
Hitler observes military maneuvers in St. Polten, Austria, in the spring of 1939. "The great strength of the totalitarian state," Hitler once said, "is that it forces those who fear it to imitate it."

7: Commemorating the Beer Hall Putsch, 1938
Hitler speaks in Munich on the 15th anniversary of the 1923 Beer Hall Putsch, in which Hitler and other Nazi party members attempted to overthrow the German government. Hitler, jailed for a year for his part in the coup attempt, was a master at swaying large crowds. "The leader of genius must have the ability to make different opponents appear as if they belong to one category," he said.

8: A Dark Day in Munich: 'Peace in Our Time'
British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain (front row, second right) walks past a Nazi honor guard on the way to a meeting with Adolf Hitler in 1938. After the meeting, Chamberlain famously declared that the agreement he had struck with the German Fuhrer meant "peace in our time" -- but subsequent events showed that he had merely whetted Hitler's appetite by handing over a strategically critical part of Czechoslovakia during their negotiations.

9: Hitler Among the Cars, 1939
Adolf Hitler tours the 1939 International Auto Exhibition in Berlin. Three years before, at another Berlin auto show, Hitler announced that Porsche would design the "People's Car," or Volkswagen, an affordable, practical vehicle for the working German family.

10: Hitler Talks Cars
Hitler was enthusiastic about cars, but didn't like to drive. For years, he had his chaffeur race down German roads at 80 mph. But once the war started, he became increasingly paranoid about his own safety, and forbade his driver to exceed 35 mph.

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11: Hitler's Birthday Beetle
Ferdinand Porsche (left, in dark suit) presents a newly designed convertible VW to Adolf Hitler in celebration of the Fuhrer's 50th Birthday, Berlin, Germany, 1939.

12: Hitler's Aide, Julius Schaub
Julius Schaub, Hitler's personal aide and adjutant, observes those around him at a party. After the 1944 bomb attempt on Hitler's life, Schaub is said to have falsely claimed to have been injured in the blast so he would be awarded a special badge by the Fuhrer. Schaub had actually been in another building at the time of the explosion.

13: Beauty Amid the Beasts
German film actress Hannelore Schroth sits in a chair at a reception for German artists held in the Berlin Chancellery in 1940. "[Hitler] often remarked that he didn't want witty or intelligent women around him, not aware how offensive such remarks must be to the ladies who were present," the chief Nazi architect Albert Speer once wrote.

14: Young, Beautiful, Doomed
German actress Marieluise Claudius leans back in a chair in the Chancellery during an artists reception in Berlin, 1940. A prolific film actress during the 1930s, she died of heart failure in 1941, at age 29.

15: Street of Fire: Munich, 1938
Nighttime Munich is lit with torches and festooned with swastikas in celebration of the 15th anniversary of the 1923 Beer Hall Putsch, Hitler's aborted attempt to use military might to take the government. Once he gained power in the late '30s, Hitler memorialized the putsch as a milestone on his own path to glory.

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16: Hitler Salutes the Troops, Nuremberg, 1938
Hitler salutes German troops in Adolf Hitler Platz in 1938. "The very first essential for success," Hitler once said, "is a perpetually constant and regular employment of violence."

17: Hitler on a Cruise, 1939
Adolf Hitler chats with several young women on a promenade of the German cruise ship Robert Ley (named after a prominant Nazi labor leader) on its maiden voyage in April, 1939.

18: Hitler Waves Bon Voyage
Hitler waves goodbye from aboard the Robert Ley.

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1: Early Days

The small building in the village of Fischlham, Austria, where Hitler began school in 1895.

2: Inside Hitler's First School
Hitler's first schoolhouse was a tiny, one-room affair. "Our teachers were absolute tyrants," he later wrote, evidently blind to the terrible irony of his words. "They had no sympathy with youth; their one objective was to stuff our brains and turn us into erudite apes like themselves."

3: Adolf's Schoolmates, 1945
Two of Adolf Hitler's shoolmates from his early days pose for Hugo Jaeger in Fischlham, Austria. Jaeger, who intimately and enthusiastically documented the Nazi's rise to power, was keen to capture the Fuhrer's "Germanic" heritage. For his part, Hitler was a mediocre student, and keenly embarrassed by that fact. In his adult years, he often viciously mocked intellectuals and academics.

4: Adolf Hitler's Hometown
A path leads into Leonding, Austria, where Adolf HItler grew up from 1898 to 1905. His parents and brother are buried there. His parents scraped together enough money to send Hitler to high school, expecting him to become a civil servant. Hitler, however, wanted to be an artist, and vowed to fail at his academic studies until his father relented. "This conflict with his father seemed to ignite an unforgiving fire in Hitler that would prove to be a fundamental aspect of his personality."

5: His Sister's Grave
A wooden marker stands over the grave of Paula Hitler, sister of Adolf Hitler, in a cemetery in Berchtesgaden, Upper Bavaria. Paula was the only full sibling of Hitler's to survive to adulthood. She said they bickered as children, but were very fond of each other. "Although he had captured the public, who believed him their protector and friend, I knew what he wanted, and I was worried not only for his physical safety but also about his sanity," she once said.
 

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6: Adolf Hitler's Ancestral Home
The village of Strones, Austria, birthplace of Adolf Hitler's grandmother, Maria Anna. As a youth growing up in Austria, Hitler was obsessed with the idea of removing the border between the German-speaking nations of Austria and Germany -- a dream he would fulfill with the forced 1938 unification of the two countries.

7: Adolf Hitler's Grandmother's House
Strones, Austria, birthplace of Hitler's grandmother, Maria Anna Schicklgruber. In 1837, unmarried, she gave birth to a son, Alois Schicklgruber, who at the age of 39 took his father's last name, Hitler. Alois in turn had a son of his own, Adolf, born April 20, 1889.

8: A Village From Hitler's Youth
Hugo Jaeger took this photograph of an Austrian village -- probably Doellersheim, where Hitler's paternal grandmother's grave resided -- sometime in the 1930s.

9: The Grave of Alois Hitler
The grave of Alois Hitler, Adolf's father, in Leonding, Austria. Alois died suddenly after a morning walk in 1903. Adolf Hitler, then 13, thereafter took advantage of his mother's indulgent nature and effectively loafed through life until twice, in both 1907 and 1908, he was rejected from the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna. He lived a desultory life as a failed artist until World War I erupted, which provided the 25-year-old with a career (soldier) and a cause (the glorification of Germany).
 

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1: Inside Hitler's Apartment
A rare look inside Hitler's apartment, what he saw each day, and how he lived. This room in his Berlin apartment in the "New Chancellery" reflects the Fuhrer's baroque, often sentimental taste.

2: Hitler's Quiet Place
Hitler's apartment in the vast "New Reich Chancellery," built by chief Nazi architect Albert Speer. This and other rooms were designed as places where the Fuhrer could relax and entertain guests, or conduct state business.

3: Adolf Hitler's Office
Hitler's 1,200-square-foot office/study in the New Chancellery was used for military meetings and strategy sessions from 1944 on.

4: The View From Hitler's Desk
Another view of one of Hitler's many offices in his many residences throughout Europe -- this one the 1,200-square-foot room in the New Chancellery where the Fuhrer worked, strategized, and plotted with fellow Nazis and generals. "In starting and waging a war," he argued, "it is not right that matters, but victory."

5: A Grand Entrance
Sentries guard the entrance to Adolf Hitler's office in the Chancellery. Hitler was obsessed with oversized architecture and overly grand monuments that would awe and humble any visitor.

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6: Hitler's Apartment
Hitler's tastes in art was traditional and often mawkish. "Anyone who sees and paints a sky green and fields blue," he famously said of modern artists, "ought to be sterilized."

7: A Watercolour by Adolf Hitler
A watercolor painting by Hitler. "In the realm of architecture, as in painting and sculpture, Hitler really remained arrested in the world of his youth: the world of 1880 to 1910," the Nazi architect Albert Speer wrote.

8: Inside Hitler's Mountain Getaway
A room in Hitler's Berghof, the mountaintop Bavarian estate where Jaeger often held slideshows of his color photographs for the Fuhrer and guests. Berghof was, by all accounts, the home closest to Hitler's heart.

9: Hitler's Mountain Getaway: The Furniture
The interior of Hitler's Berghof estate reflected his conception of what a "Germanic" style should look like.

10: Strength Through Joy
An interior swimming pool aboard a "Strength Through Joy" cruise ship, part of the Nazi regime's program of leisure activities. Hitler wanted German workers to receive ample holiday time because, he said, "I want a determined people with strong nerves."
 

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11: Sick Bay for the Strong and Joyous
A sick bay aboard the Nazi cruise ship Robert Ley. The ship, named after the head of a Nazi version of a labor union, was one of the first cruise ships built expressly for the purpose of leisurely cruising.

12: Inside Hitler's Munich Office
Adolf Hitler's office in Munich. In this building, in 1938, the infamous Munich Agreement was signed by British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain, giving Germany a portion of Czechoslovakia.

13: Phone, Flowers, Hat
This 1938 photograph from Adolf Hitler's Chancellery office in Berlin, published in LIFE magazine in 1970, has an eerie domesticity about it. The telephone, the note pad, the flowers, the glimpse of a fringed lampshade in the mirror -- all of these items suggest a rather dull, comfortable, middle-class sensibility. Viewed now, however, the presence of Adolf Hitler's hat -- as if casually tossed there by a man arriving for work at his well-appointed office -- lends the otherwise placid scene a hint of brutality.
 

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Women of the Reich

1: Hitler and Goebbels With Rhineland Girls
Hitler demonstrates his popularity with the women of Germany in 1943. Hitler refused to marry while Führer because he felt it would distract him from what he saw as his destiny, i.e., leading the Nazi Party and Germany to greatness. Hitler's chauffeur, meanwhile, called the Führer's longtime girlfriend, Eva Braun "the unhappiest woman in Germany." Braun and Hitler did finally marry in a bunker under Berlin in 1945 as the Reich was collapsing and the Allies were advancing—she was 33, he was 56.

2: Eva Braun
Adolf Hitler's longtime companion and, in their last hours, his wife, Braun became the central woman in his life after the apparent suicide of Geli Raubal, Hitler's niece and rumored lover. Braun is often characterized in histories of the era as an unpretentious woman, but also someone who was frivolous and vain.

3: Eva Braun's Sister, Gretl
The Brauns were a respectable Bavarian family who had no idea what history had in store for them when Eva became a photographer's model at age 17, working in the studio of Heinrich Hoffman, the official photographer of the Reich. Through the job, Braun met "Herr Wolff," an older man with "a funny moustache" whose real name was Hitler. Gretl Braun married Hermann Fegelein, a general in the SS and a member of the Nazi Party from 1930 on, and survived the war. Fegelein did not; he was executed—some say by Hitler's own orders—in 1945.

4: Czech Actress Lida Baarova and Joseph Goebbels
Goebbels (at right), actor Gustav Froehlich, and fiancée Lida Baarova party in 1936. Baarova began an affair with Goebbels that ended her engagement to Froehlich and nearly dissolved the Goebbels marriage. She avoided execution in Czechoslovakia after the war.

5: Magda Goebbels
Joseph Goebbels's wife was the unofficial "first lady" of the Third Reich. When Nazi architect Albert Speer offered to sneak her six children out of Germany in 1945, she refused. All six were poisoned—many believe by Magda herself—the day after Hitler died.

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Hermann and Emmy Goering, 1936
Former actress Emmy Goering lived a lavish lifestyle, much of it funded by her husband's rapacious greed and habit of confiscating wealth from Jews. When she gave birth to their daughter in 1938, he ordered 500 planes flown over Berlin in salute.
 

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Winifred Wagner and Adolf Hitler
Winnie Wagner and Hitler tour Wagner's home in 1938. The English-born daughter-in-law of composer Richard Wagner was a devoted friend to and admirer of Hitler until her death in 1980. Rumors circulated in the early 1930s that the two might even marry.
 

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Body of the Nazi Empire
Athletes perform during the Reichs Party Congress in 1938, in Nuremberg, Germany. Hitler considered German bodies property of the German empire. Even in his interactions with children, he was seemingly interested mainly in the characteristics they would pass on to the future Reich.
 

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collaredgirl65;6813 said:
Very well put together with good information and beautiful pictures. :tu:
seconded,

plus i'm a sucker for color photos from the early part of the century
 
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