Showing posts with label DürnsteinBad Ischl. Show all posts
Showing posts with label DürnsteinBad Ischl. Show all posts

Other Remaining Nazi-era Sites in Austria

Standing beside the desk in the Kaiservilla in Bad Ischl at which, on July 28 1914, Franz Joseph signed the declaration of war against the Kingdom of Serbia, thus signalling the start of the First World War- in Kennan's phrase, "the seminal event of the 20th century." Attendants placed a pen in his hand. He turned it over, balanced it between his fingers, studied it for several seconds, lost in thought. With that pen the Austrian Emperor signed the ultimatum to Serbia that sent the world to war. Here too with that same pen he wrote his famous "Appeal to My People" soon after the guns had spoken. The building at the foot of the Jainzenberg was originally a villa in the Biedermeier style built in 1834. After the engagement of Franz Joseph I to Duchess Elisabeth of Bavaria in 1853, Franz Joseph's mother, Archduchess Sophie, acquired the property as a wedding present for the imperial couple. When Franz Joseph died in 1916 he'd left the estate to his youngest daughter, Archduchess Marie Valerie who was married to Archduke Franz Salvator from the Austria-Tuscany line, maintaining ownership to the Habsburg family. Since the Imperial Villa was privately owned by the Habsburgs and Franz Salvator and Marie Valerie renounced all claims to the throne, the property remained in their possession even after the collapse of the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy in 1918. Her son Hubert Salvator Habsburg-Lorraine inherited the villa. Today's owner is his son Markus Emanuel Habsburg-Lothringen.

Dürnstein
Dürnstein from a Nazi-era postcard. One of the most-visited tourist destinations in the Wachau region, Dürnstein was first mentioned in 1192 when, in the castle seen above the town built by the Kuenringer family in the middle of the 12th century, King Richard the Lionheart was held captive by Leopold V, Duke of Austria, after their dispute during the Third Crusade from December 21, 1192 to February 4, 1193. Richard the Lionheart had offended Leopold the Virtuous by casting down his standard from the walls at the Battle of Acre, and the duke suspected that King Richard ordered the murder of his cousin Conrad of Montferrat in Jerusalem. In consequence Pope Celestine III excommunicated Leopold for capturing a fellow crusader. This is the first mention of the place name Dürnstein. As legend has it, the King’s faithful French minstrel, Jean Blondel, discovered him with a song known only to the two of them. A ransom of 77,100 pounds of silver was paid and Richard released. The Babenbergs used the money to fortify Enns, Hainburg, Wiener Neustadt and Vienna, whilst the name of the faithful servant lives on in many of Dürnstein’s establishments. It's actually no longer possible to determine whether the king was imprisoned in Dürnstein Castle , in the valley or in a neighbouring castle that no longer exists.  The duke finally gave custody of the king to Henry VI, Holy Roman Emperor, who imprisoned Richard at Trifels Castle. The castle itself was eventually almost completely destroyed by the troops of the Swedish Empire under Field Marshal Lennart Torstenson in 1645.
Supposed painting by Hitler of the town gate, dated 1921, which was to have gone up for auction at the Ludlow Racecourse in Shropshire in 2017 and was expected to get £6,000. In the end, the paintings sold collectively for £97,672, which included another scene believed to be of Dürnstein. An Austrian expert issued certificates of authenticity for the pictures, which once belonged to a British soldier who was stationed in Essen in 1945; on the back of this painting is stamped "H.O.A. Horvath, Archiv für NS Zeitgeschichte" (Archive for NS contemporary history). As can be seen today and when compared with images from the Nazi-era below, the scene shown in the painting bears little resemblance to how it currently appears. In any event, as Dutch journalist Bart FM Droog contends, such a claim is rubbish and most of the works attributed to Hitler worldwide are not authentic because the style and materials of the works do not match. According to him, "[t]he majority of 'Hitlers' which surfaced after 1945 can be dismissed at first sight as forgeries.“I don’t want people to be buying this rubbish – almost all alleged Hitler artworks and other Hitler items offered by auction houses are fakes. Between 1910 and 1913 Hitler only produced watercolours depicting Viennese city sights, and only signed these works with 'A. Hitler' or 'A.H’. From his Great War period only one authentic Hitler work is known – a very clumsy watercolour portrait of one of his army comrades, made in 1915. But as far as we can tell, Hitler only ever painted in watercolour, whereas the portraits sold by Mullocks are also in oil and pencil."
Another artist, Siegfried Stoitzner, has caused controversy in Dürnstein where he remains an honorary citizen after having joined the Nazi Party. He first joined on December 1, 1928 (membership number 83,189), but left again on December 1, 1930, before rejoining on January 9, 1932 (membership number 781,279). In 1934 he was interned in the Wöllersdorf detention camp as a member of the party, which was illegal in Austria after the assassination of Dolfuß and the attempted coup. In 1936 he had to sell the Kuenringer tavern in Dürnstein and move to Rossatz. In 1938 he was called up again, but soon demobilised and spent the war in Bad Traunstein. That year he exhibited a pencil drawing of the Austrian Nazi leader Hans Hiedler and was represented at the Great German Art Exhibition in Munich in 1938 and later in 1940. His extensive work mainly involved landscape paintings, portraits and hunting scenes connected to the Wachau and the Waldviertel; in 1939, Hitler bought the oil painting “Wachau Ferryman” there for 2000 Reichmarks. After the war Stoitzner was expelled from the Society of Visual Artists of Vienna because of his Nazi connections although in 1950 he was readmitted together with other members who had been tainted by Nazism and expelled in 1945. 
  
 
Melk 
 
Hitler stopping before Melk as he was driven down the old Nibelungenstrasse from Linz with the abbey, the original seat of the Babenbergs, towering above the left bank of the Danube in the background. The photograph on the right of the same motorcade comes from an album in the private collection of H. Blair Howell. In the monitored and partly falsified election referendum of April 10, 12,215 people in the Melk district expressed their support for the anschluss with only eleven voting to remain independent. 
Here in January 1944 a Mauthausen subcamp was established in the abandoned Wehrmacht Freiherr-von-Birago pioneer barracks. Approximately five hundred prisoners arrived at the camp on April 11 as the vanguard for what was to end up being 7,000 prisoners. In fact, according to Hans Maršálek, the camp reached its maximum capacity on January 30, 1945, with 10,352 prisoners from at least 26 countries held in Melk as, from September 1944, prisoners were brought from the Natzweiler main camp and, from January 1945, from Auschwitz. The larger national groups included Poles, Hungarians, French, Soviet citizens, Germans, Italians, Greeks, and Yugoslavs. However, there were also in Melk prisoners from Albania, Egypt, Denmark, Portugal, Turkey, the United States, and other countries. About a third of the prisoners were Jews. The last prisoner transport reached the camp on January 29, 1945: among the 2,000 prisoners from Auschwitz were 119 children between the ages of nine and 15.
The camp was then opened on April 20–21, 1944 and the prisoners were accommodated in eighteen blocks to labour for Quarz GmbH, a subsidiary of the armaments company Steyr-Daimler-Puch. Prisoners excavated six underground caverns, each several hundred metres long, near Lossdorf to be used as sites for the production of ball bearings. They also laid rails, poured concrete for the approaches to the cavern, constructed barracks for equipment and machines, laid cables and water pipes, and transported building equipment and machines from the Lossdorf railway station to the construction site. Despite the enormous effort, by the winter of 1944–1945, only a fraction of the planned cavern could commence production. Production eventually ceased on April 1, 1945, as a result of the advance by Soviet troops by which time there were around 7,500 prisoners in the camp. On March 12, 1945, a group of 34 Scandinavian prisoners were transferred by the Red Cross back to their home countries via Mauthausen and Neuengamme as the remaining camp prisoners were then evacuated to Ebensee, Mauthausen, and Gusen. On April 11, a transport to Mauthausen of 1,500 youths and sick prisoners was put together, and thirty to forty seriously ill prisoners were murdered in the infirmary. Two more transports left Melk on April 13, with 1,440 prisoners in total sent to Ebensee travelling by goods train and barge. The last transport of 1,500 prisoners left the camp on April 15 in the direction of Ebensee. The Melk subcamp existed officially until April 19, 1945. After the war a constant stream of German Bohemians and Moravians moved into Austria, and were given a camp in Melk by the Russians. However, as Giles MacDonogh relates in After the Reich (296), "it was grossly overstretched and they ended up becoming a burden to all the Allied zones. The response was to demand the expulsion of ‘Reich’ Germans."

St. Pölten
Adolf Hitlerplatz from a period postcard, so-named from 1938-1946, and today. Today rathausplatz, it had been renamed Marschallplatz after the war until 1955. Neugebäudeplatz too had been renamed at the same time Platz der SA. As early as March 11, 1938, there were pro-Austria rallies in St. Pölten, and the Austrian army began arming itself against the invasion of German troops. Nevertheless, by the evening, thousands of St. Pölten residents celebrated with Nazi flags in the streets. The St. Pölten Nazi branch gathered and appointed Hans Doblhofer as Kreisleiter, Franz Pfister as deputy district leader and Franz Hörhann as mayor, an office he would hold until August 20 of that year before becoming an official of the German Labour Front and district chairman of Kraft durch Freude. He would die on March 16, 1974 in his hometown. Pfister had played a key role in sending former St. Pölten deputy mayor Viktor Müllner to Dachau concentration camp for nearly five years before being released in in 1942. Pfister had also 'aryanised' the Arkaden Kino which had been owned by Olga Sattel until 1938. A letter from the property transfer office to Pfister from December 14, 1938 rewarded him with the 'purchase' of the theatre in recognition of his activities as a Nazi party member since 1922 (number 11,288) when such activities were illegal at the time and he himself had lost his business, "Purgstaller Holzwarenindustrie," in the aftermath of the attempted 1934 coup.
Before midnight, the Nazis occupied the town hall. A day later, the Wehrmacht marching into Austria came to St. Pölten on its way to Vienna, where it was greeted with cheers. Here Hitler is seen arriving at the main train station March 14, 1938, and at what had been the Hotel Pittner where he had lunch with Heinrich Himmler, Wilhelm Keitel and Martin Bormann whilst travelling from Linz to Vienna, March 14, 1938. The Nazis set about after the anschluß to establish a Groß-St. St. Pölten. Although Krems became the Gau capital of Lower Austria, which had been renamed "Niederdonau", Nazi planners intended St. Pölten to become a "Gauwirtschaftsstadt" because it had industry, rail connections and large available areas.  One spoke of “Groß-St. Pölten ”and attached numerous towns to the city. Under Nazi rule, not only the huge air force base in nearby Markersdorf was built, but also the "Spratzern camp" (later the Kopal barracks) and other army facilities. Furthermore, the construction of a Reichsautobahn from Salzburg via St. Pölten to Vienna began and the railway network was expanded. There were residential buildings such as the "Volkswohnhausanlage" built from 1938 to 1940. In 1938, the Jewish community in St. Pölten had numbered at around 1,200, four hundred of whom lived in the town itself. Organisations such as the SD soon began to arrest Jews, organise rallies, initiate bans on professions for Jews practising as doctors, veterinarians, pharmacists and lawyers, and other routine humiliations. During the so-called Reichskristallnacht, about 350 uniformed men and civilians destroyed St. Pölten's synagogue and shops; numerous Jewish citizens were arrested. From May 1940 there were hardly any Jews left in St. Pölten; those who had not been arrested and could not emigrate were prompted to register in Vienna. On October 7, 1941, the mayor announced that St. Pölten was free of Jews and gypsies. Three cases are known in which Jews managed to survive undetected in St. Pölten until 1945. Financially, the expulsion of the Jews benefited both the state, the town and private individuals. Numerous shops, businesses such as the Schüller factory, apartments and other property were expropriated. The synagogue served as a camp for Soviet prisoners of war and base for SA-Standarte 21. Meanwhile one Jewish cemetery was completely destroyed whilst another one that still exists was left in ruins. From 1941 especially the number of mass murders in the concentration camps increased; at least three hundred of the 1,200 Jewish citizens were murdered with almost none returning to St. Pölten after the war.  
In the course of the war, the conversion of industrial production to armaments also took place to a large extent in St. Pölten. Numerous companies, including the largest, increased their production and number of employees considerably. Since not only the Jews had disappeared from the city, but also large parts of the remaining male population having enlisted into the Wehrmacht, women and forced labourers were also used on a large scale in St. Pölten. This happened in almost all businesses in the city, and - as in the camp for Jews deported from Hungary in the Viehofner Au - there were at least 400 deaths or murders. The resistance against the Nazi regime in St. Pölten increased significantly compared to the rest of Austria, even if it had no concrete political or military success. The Catholic resistance was mainly limited to illegal religious instruction, the Jehovah's Witnesses refused to serve in the army and towards the end of the war, the non-partisan resistance group Kirchl-Trauttmansdorff of approximately 400 conspirators primarily was set up which included members of the upper class; their aim was to hand over the city to the Soviet troops without a fight. However, the group was infiltrated and betrayed and so on April 13, 1945, twelve members were sentenced to death and shot in Hammerpark, where a memorial commemorates them today. The most significant were the resistance groups that emerged from the previously strong labour movement.
In June 1944, the first air raids by Allied bombers took place with the station being the main target. The heaviest bombings took place at Easter 1945 leaving 591 dead and 142 of the 4260 houses were completely destroyed. 3500 people were made homeless and  large parts of the infrastructure (such as gas and water supply) were hit. The early months of 1945 saw St. Pölten's Nazi leaders urging its citizens to fight to the last man, resulting in the murder of prisoners, deserters and resisters. On April 14, 1945 the Red Army finally launched the attack on St. Pölten. After the rapid capture of the city on April 15, the front ran for three weeks to the west of St. Pölten. During the assault, roughly six hundred civilians died, 24,000 escaped and only about 8,000 people remained in the city. Whilst the contact between the St. Pölten and the Soviet soldiers on the one hand should have been friendly given Soviet claims to believe it to be a liberation from the Nazi regime and the end of the war, it ended up suffering from the usual Soviet army behaviour of looting and rape. By the end of the war, 39% of St. Pölten's building stock was destroyed or badly damaged.
At the Soviet cemetery to the north of the town 

Amstetten
  Bad Radkersburg Hitlerplatz
The town hall on the former Adolf-Hitler-Platz. Today this tiny village is infamous as the place where Josef Fritzl imprisoned, raped and kidnapped his daughter Elisabeth for twenty-four years in a fallout shelter, fathering seven children with her. After the horrific story died down eventually, the town returned in the news after it was revealed that Hitler was still listed as an honorary citizen. 
Amstetten had served as a garrison town for the Imperial and Royal Army and later the Austrian army (Melk Command), which was absorbed into the Wehrmacht after Austria was annexed in 1938. In the strategic considerations of the Cold War, Amstetten was considered a “key military area”.
On March 14, 1938, as he passed through the town during the anschluss, local authorities took it as an honour and awarded Hitler the honour of citizen. A torchlight procession through Amstetten had taken place three days earlier on March 11th. Nazi district leader Wolfgang Mitterdorfer wrote three days later how "[a]ll houses in the district that do not yet have a completely correct swastika flag must get one as quickly as possible." The people of Amstetten were asked to hand over objects from forbidden parties and to remove everything that "reminds of the unfortunate past" from public buildings. Weapons were also to be handed over to the gendarmerie. For the upcoming referendum on April 10 on the anschluss, speakers were arranged and it was declared that there was "no right to vote for the Jews." New offices were also created, such as those of the ϟϟ in the Amstettner town hall. The local paper carried advertisements and notices for "Aryan representatives ... wanted" and "belonging to the possession of every comrade is the book Hitler: Mein Kampf ... " Chancellor-Dr.-Dollfuß-Platz, today's Amstettner Hauptplatz, was renamed Adolf-Hitler-Platz.
It wasn't until May 2011 that the local Green Party sponsored the move to strike his name from the honours list which was passed by a large majority in the town council. But two members of the far-right Freedom Party, formerly led by Jorg Haider, abstained, arguing simply that Hitler’s suicide in 1945 had de facto made him lose his honorary citizenship.
The Seegrotte in nearby Hinterbrühl bei Mödling has changed besides the flags it flies. Under the Nazi regime, Amstetten served as the setting for the abuse and arrest of political opponents as well as the increasing disenfranchisement and expropriation of Jews and gypsies. At least sixteen of 43 Jews were deported and murdered. In the Amstetten hospital, as in the Mauer-Öhling nursing home, forced sterilisations were carried out on so-called Erbkranken (hereditary patients). Mauer-Öhling also served as a transit station, and from autumn 1944 also as the scene for numerous euthanasia murders. At the same time in parallel to the extermination program, the Nazi officials responsible for Amstetten pursued a comprehensive expansion programme for the city, which included housing estates, schools and impressive Nazi buildings. Only a few of these were realised due to the war, although industrial and rail systems in particular were expanded. 
As a railway junction, Amstetten was of strategic importance as a war target during the war, particularly f
rom November 1944 by Americans and later by Soviet troops. The repair work on the infrastructure was primarily carried out by concentration camp inmates. The construction of air-raid tunnels, which was pushed ahead in 1944, could only be implemented through the use of forced labourers, who were of great importance for trade and agriculture. In order to be able to repair the strategically important railway facilities in the urban area, a subcamp of the Mauthausen concentration camp was set up in March 1945 with up to three thousand male and 500 female prisoners. The city, which was full of refugees and retreating Wehrmacht units, suffered its heaviest bombardment only in the last days of April 1945, triggered by a long-since pointless anti-aircraft response by the ϟϟ troops stationed to guard the concentration camp prisoners. This attack alone caused over 200 deaths, as well as severe destruction, including one of the few remaining buildings from the Middle Ages, the “Kilian Fountain”, on the site of the mediæval pillory. 


Traismauer
 Supposedly the oldest building in Austria, part of the gate for the Roman auxiliary fort of ‘Augustinianis’ and garrisoned by the Ala Thracum I from about 90 CE onwards. Flanked by two mighty horseshoe towers formed the east gate of the fort, it and the horseshoe-shaped Hunger or Reck Tower also belonged to the fort fortifications. In ancient times, the area was part of the province of Noricum and the site of a Roman cavalry fort, Augustianis. Today's town centre of Traismauer rises directly above the foundations of the former fort. It was an important military base for the auxiliary troops on the Austrian section of the Limes. This gate and the Reck or Hunger Tower are part of the camp fortifications in stone construction from the end of the 3rd to the beginning of the 4th century.
In the old town itself one an still clearly see the street grid of the Roman camp streets. Parts of the fortifications are within the remains of the southeast corner of the mediæval city wall. The auxiliary fort was built in the second half of the 1st century AD initially as a wood-earth fort and housed a cavalry unit of around 500 horsemen, who probably belonged to the Ala I Hispanorum Auriana. After being destroyed by fire, a new wood-earth fort was built at the end of the 1st century. An inscription stone documents the construction of the first which was a large stone fort approximately 3.75 ha in size dating around 140 CE, in which the Ala I Augusta Thracum, a mounted auxiliary unit with around 500 horsemen, was stationed. After the Marcomannic invasions around 170, the fort was reinforced with walls and towers. In the following centuries it was enlarged to approx. 4.1 hectares and the fortifications reinforced. In Late Antiquity, the number of soldiers was greatly reduced and their location shifted to a residual fort (burgus) in the north-west corner, whilst the civilian population settled within the fortified fort area. After the destruction by fire in the late 4th or early 5th century, most of the remaining residents left the fort after the soldiers had themselves left. It wasn't until the 8th century that the place, which was now called Treisma, was resettled again; Traismauer was first mentioned in documents in 799 as Tresma.
 
 
Parts of the Roman fort defences were integrated into the mediæval city wall and are still visible today. Remains of the foundations of the principia were found and excavated under today's parish church. In the south-east corner of the camp you can still see the rubble stone foundations of the Roman fan-shaped tower from the 4th century, which also belonged to the city fortifications in the Middle Ages. The brick wall visible today was built just outside the original Roman walls in the 17th century to protect against Turkish incursions. The Traismauer city palace was built on the foundations of Roman Burgus from the 4th to 5th centuries. Roman tombstones and components are exhibited in the inner courtyard of the castle, including the dedicatory inscription for the construction of the fort at the time of Antoninus Pius. 
More recently in the town a 21-year-old accused of being a drug dealer by a roommate led to a house search in September 2018. The investigators noticed a 15x20 cm Hitler picture in a brown frame that was clearly visible on a living room shelf. The black and white print was labeled "Uncle Adi from Purkersdorf" and because the picture was visible not only to the three residents of the flat share, but also to about twenty visitors, it was, according to the indictment, a crime.

 
A few miles outside the town is this doleful memorial to four brothers killed days after the end of the war. On May 14, 1945 four boys from nearby Radlberg aged between 9 and 14 were killed after finding ammunition and handled it resulting in an explosion in which the four boys were killed. A fifth boy survived seriously injured. To commemorate this misfortune seventy years earlier, members of the nature group Unser Radlberg and other volunteers set up this memorial at about the point where the accident occurred. It was unveiled and blessed on Sunday, August 23, 2015.


Döbling
Döbling
 Just north of Vienna with the Leopoldsberg in the background. During the Weimar republic the Social Democrats had planned and established many blocks of public housing, siedlungen of which the Karl-Marx-Hof is one of the largest.  The suburb of Döbling had a high percentage of Jewish residents and maintained a synagogue in the district. During the Reichskristallnacht this synagogue (like almost all others in Vienna) was destroyed. The harbour itself only ever became economically important for the logging industry and after the war it was converted into a marina for rowing clubs and motorboats. This was not before the Russian raping and looting that took place in which
[a] boon to the Russians and the looters were the big wine houses in Döbling and Heiligenstadt. The Russians emptied the great tun in Klosterneuburg and then sprayed it with machine- gun fire when it would provide them with no more solace. People were seen carrying off wine from Heiligenstadt in large vessels... (MacDonogh, 30)
‘The great provision of wine and schnapps in Vienna, above all in the vineyard areas, possibly provided a foundation for the raping of the women when it took place.’ It is true that some of the most aggravated instances were in the great cellars of Döbling, where Austrian sparkling wine or Sekt is made, and the wine ‘village’ of Grinzing. (33)
 Salzburg 
Looking down towards Salzburg from Maria Plain and from the exact same spot from a Nazi-era postcard with the swastika rising from behind.
On February 5, 1914 Hitler travelled from Munich to Salzburg and was found "unfit for service, too weak and incapacitated for weapons" (which did not prevent him from serving as a war volunteer in the Bavarian Army during the First World War). Bullock (47) records that "after the Germans marched into Austria in 1938 a very thorough search was made in Linz for the records connected with Hitler's military service and Hitler was furious when the Gestapo failed to discover them." In the years after the Great War, as a politician for the Nazi Party he appeared at party events of the sister party DNSAP; at the Representatives' Day of all national socialists in the German-speaking area held in Salzburg on August 7, 1920, Hitler, who was still unknown outside Munich and who was also not the chairman of the Nazi Party, spoke up and delivered a celebrated speech in which he invoked the "Volksgemeinschaft" (as opposed to class thinking), calling for workers to win national ideas and make National Socialism a popular movement, and attacked Jews. The following evening in the Kurhaus gave him the opportunity for another speech.  The Austrian Nazis used the opportunity to invite Hitler for a campaign campaign in the fall of 1920. On October 1, Hitler spoke at the Kurhaus in Salzburg in a speech lasting several hours where he distinguished himself as "a speaker far beyond the usual level of outstanding speakers who has the power to disseminate his views with compelling force," according to the Salzburg party newspaper "Deutscher Volksruf".
The following day Hitler appeared in Hallein at an event disrupted by Social Democrat participants led by Mayor Anton Neumayr. Hitler also gave a speech at the national Nazi party conference which took place from August 13 to 15, 1923 in Salzburg, The Nazi press reports focused more on the staging and inspiring effect of the performance than on the content of the one-and-a-half-hour speech in which Hitler openly announced that in a short time in Germany the decision would fall - bringing this a few months in his later  attempted coup. The attitude of the Salzburg Nazi Party to Hitler was ambiguous. On the one hand glorifying him through visits of the Salzburg Nazi functionaries Otto Troyer, Anton Funk and Hans Prodinger with the imprisoned Nazi leader. On the other hand, some articles in the "People's Call" argued against the Hitler cult and against the Munich way of the violent seizure of power. 
 On the morning of March 12, 1938, German troops marched into the city of Salzburg. In many places, solstice fires in the form of swastikas were lit by supporters of the Hitler Youth in the mountains whilst, on official orders, the church bells rang throughout the country. The first German officers arrived in Salzburg at midnight between 11 and 12 March 1938.
Austrians celebrating the German army's entry into Salzburg via the Staatsbrücke over the river Salzach on March 12, 1938 and the site on my birthday, 2018. The first tank tips arrived in the early morning and from 10.30 to 11.00 aircraft of the German Air Force dropped leaflets with Hitler's greeting over the city. The German troops entered Salzburg with the roaring cheers of the population. Large quantities of Nazi flags and armbands had been delivered by truck and were distributed to the population. Franz Krieger's press photos seen here, taken on the afternoon of March 12, show German troops on the Staatsbrücke and Platzl, critical points at which a particularly large number of people had flocked to one another. The propaganda campaign for the "Anschluss" consisted of promises and concrete economic improvements. In the course of the initial propaganda effort workers received higher wages; child benefits, marriage loans and unemployment benefits were paid out.
Not all Salzburgers cheered, although the only noteworthy resistance actions in the district of Salzburg were in the working class strongholds Hallein and Bischofshofen. In the afternoon and evening of March 11 there were clashes between Nazis and Communists in Hallein and riots in Bischofshofen. Nazi newsreels showed images from Salzburg on April 29, 1938 under the title "The borders have fallen," where members of the Hitler Youth dismantled and destroyed border symbols between Germany and Austria as boundary markers and signs were symbolically burned. Books were next twenty-four hours later when, on April 30, 1938 at around 20.30 books were burned at Residenzplatz which the Nazis described as "degenerate art." 1,200 works by Jewish, social-democrat, Marxist, ecclesiastical or liberal authors were destroyed including works by Stefan Zweig, Arthur Schnitzler, and Franz Werfel that had previously been collected from libraries and private households near Residenzplatz with as many as 5,000 watching or taking part. This organised book burning was the only one on Austrian soil. Zweig wrote, shocked, to a friend the next day of how Salzburg was the "most Nazi city" and "humiliated" him. Zweig had lived in the city for many years, but went into exile in 1934 after the fascist coup attempt. Now, four years later, one of his books was thrown into the fire so that "it burns the flames like all Jewish writing" as it roared over the Residenzplatz. Nevertheless, at this stage of the dictatorship the Nazi leadership was not at all happy about the burnings given the view of it abroad and how it was a provocation for conservative Catholics. Thus the press ignored the Salzburg book burning; in the Austrian section of the Münchner Neuesten Nachrichten for example one reads a report about the celebrations before May 1st, but nothing about the book burning.
In Austria, a total of 72,000 people were imprisoned in the first few days after the Anschluss. Political opponents, Jewish citizens and other minorities were subsequently arrested and deported to concentration camps. The synagogue was destroyed. 
After Germany invaded the Soviet Union, several PoW camps for Soviet prisoners and other enemy nations were organised in the city. During the Nazi occupation, a Romani camp was built in Salzburg-Maxglan intended as an Arbeitserziehungslager (work 'education' camp), which provided slave labour to local industry. It also operated as a Zwischenlager (transit camp), holding Roma before their deportation to German camps or ghettos in German-occupied territories in eastern Europe.
Soon Allied bombing would end up destroying roughly 7,600 houses and kill 550 inhabitants. Fifteen air strikes destroyed 46 percent of the city's buildings, especially those around Salzburg railway station. Although the town's bridges and the dome of the cathedral were destroyed, somehow much of its Baroque architecture remained intact. As a result, Salzburg is one of the few remaining examples of a town of its style. American troops entered the city on May 5, 1945 and it became the centre of the American-occupied area in Austria. Several displaced persons camps were established in Salzburg—among them Riedenburg, Camp Herzl (Franz-Josefs-Kaserne), Camp Mülln, Bet Bialik, Bet Trumpeldor, and New Palestine.
 
The Mirabellgarten and Mozartdenkmal with the wife today. The primary allure of Mozart for the Nazis lay in the representation of a purely German cultural icon. As one of the most revered composers, Mozart's Austrian roots were conveniently overlooked, his legacy instead co-opted into a narrative of German racial and cultural supremacy. Erik Levi argues that the appropriation of Mozart was a strategic move by the Nazis to "claim cultural capital". They reinterpreted Mozart's operas to fit into a vision of German culture that was steeped in the ideals of racial purity, national unity, and Aryan supremacy. This appropriation was not merely an ideological imposition, but was facilitated through active reinterpretation of Mozart's works, with Nazi officials even going as far as altering Mozart's operas to suit their ideology. For instance, Kater's "The Twisted Muse" elucidates how The Marriage of Figaro, a critique of aristocratic privilege, was moulded into a piece that celebrated Aryan nobility. Such distortions of Mozart's operas were pivotal in creating a cultural narrative that served Nazi propaganda. 
Another vital facet to consider is the manner in which Mozart was used to project an image of Germany to the world. The Salzburg Festival, renowned for its performances of Mozart’s works, became a platform for showcasing Nazi Germany's 'refinement' to a global audience. The high international regard for Mozart allowed the Nazis to exploit his music as a symbol of Germany's cultural superiority, thereby attempting to legitimise their regime. David B Dennis, in his book "Inhumanities: Nazi Interpretations of Western Culture", highlights how the festival was utilised to project an image of a "culturally rich and peaceful Germany" contrary to the militaristic reality of the regime. By luring diplomats and foreign intellectuals with the charm of Mozart’s music, the Nazis hoped to manipulate the world’s perception of the Third Reich. Furthermore, a discussion about Mozart’s importance to the Nazis would be incomplete without considering the psychological aspects. Historian Michael H. Kater in his "Composers of the Nazi Era" provides an in-depth analysis of the Nazis' complex relationship with Mozart. According to Kater, Hitler, who was an avid fan of opera, often sought solace in Mozart’s music during periods of stress, suggesting that Mozart had an indirect, psychological influence on the Nazi leadership. Finally, Mozart's music was also used as a propaganda tool within Nazi concentration camps. In an abhorrent juxtaposition, the beauty of Mozart's melodies was exploited to mask the horrors of the Holocaust.
View over Salzburg from the Hohensalzburg

The Theresienstadt camp, for example, often used performances of Mozart’s pieces to deceive Red Cross inspectors about the conditions of the camps. Shirli Gilbert, in her book "Music in the Holocaust", explains how the Nazis used Mozart’s music to create an illusion of normalcy amidst the brutal conditions in these camps. Even the victims of the Nazi regime, the Jewish prisoners, were coerced to perform Mozart’s music. This is a haunting testimony to the Nazis' duality, appreciating the beauty of Mozart’s music while inflicting unimaginable cruelty. It shows the deeply disturbing use of Mozart's music as a tool of deception and control in the hands of the Nazis. Gilbert further expounds how, paradoxically, many Jewish musicians held onto Mozart's music as a symbol of resistance and a source of solace amidst their grim circumstances. This showcases the complex, dualistic role Mozart’s music played during this period – as both a tool of Nazi propaganda and a beacon of hope and resistance for their victims. Another intriguing aspect to consider is the post-war perception of Mozart in light of his association with the Nazis. Levi argues that the post-war era saw a strong push to "denazify" Mozart, with extensive attempts made to disassociate his legacy from the taint of Nazi propaganda. This process not only reinstated Mozart’s universal appeal but also presented a case study on the lasting implications of art appropriation in a political context. In this endeavour, scholars like Brigid Brophy, in her biographical study "Mozart the Dramatist", sought to reinstate Mozart's cultural and historical context, arguing that his operas were not celebrations of racial superiority but humanistic dramas that transcended national and racial barriers. Thus, the post-war perception of Mozart was heavily shaped by the need to extricate his legacy from its wartime manipulation.
Drake Winston in front of Mozart's statue in 2019. Although the performance of Mozart’s Coronation Mass K317 in Salzburg's Cathedral conducted by organist Joseph Messner four days after Hitler’s triumphant entry into Salzburg on April 6 captured the euphoria of the moment, the Nazis had considerable issues with co-opting Mozart into their propaganda as seen later that year when the initial plans for the 1938 Salzburg Festival had been summarily altered. Of the four operas originally promised for 1938 for example, only Don Giovanni and Figaro were retained. Even then, the honour of opening the Festival was bestowed on Wagner’s Die Meistersinger, conducted by Wilhelm Furtwängler and staged in the presence of Hitler’s deputy, Rudolf Hess. This would lead Goebbels to conclude that the inclusion of Wagner’s Tannhäuser and Die Meistersinger had been a tactical mistake which diluted the primacy of Mozart given that, despite all the propaganda, ticket sales for performances of Don Giovanni and Figaro amounted to roughly a third of the amount taken the year before. By November 6 Goebbels could record in his diary that Hitler had agreed that in future no further Wagner performances would be allowed at Salzburg, but from now on, the Festival’s main focus would be orientated towards Mozart and Richard Strauss.
Despite the uniquely Germanic character of the 1938 Salzburg Festival Nazi propaganda stressed both Mozart operas were still presented in the original Italian, ostensibly to emphasise the burgeoning alliance with Italy, and which overrode the embarrassment of highlighting the Jewish authorship of the libretti. Of note too was the significant role allotted to sacred music, possibly as an attempt to reach out to the Catholic Church although the performance of Mozart’s Requiem under Joseph Messner in Salzburg Cathedral was dedicated to the memory of the 140 Nazis who had died during an abortive coup in July 1934.
With Drake Winston
The following year on August 9, 1939 Hitler attended a performance of Mozart’s opera Don Giovanni at the Salzburg music festival which was the first time he participated in this particular event. To judge by his reported demeanour there could not have appeared to have been a large-scale military conflict looming on the horizon. When it came, it would see the most overwhelmingly lavish musical celebration to have been organised by the Nazi regime involving the extensive and morale-boosting activities organised throughout the German Reich and its occupied territories in 1941 to mark the 150th anniversary of the death of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. Yet as Erik Levi notes in Mozart and the Nazis: The Abuse of a Cultural Icon, Mozart seems the most unlikely candidate to have become a useful adjunct to Nazi propaganda.
Although depicted at the time as the shining example of youthful German genius, whose memory German soldiers were supposedly fighting on the Eastern front to preserve, his music, unlike that of Beethoven or Wagner, does not easily fit into the mould of Teutonic heroism that was required at this particular time. In fact, Mozart was probably the least easily malleable of all the great composers to have been appropriated by the Nazis. On almost every level, his philosophical and moral outlook seems at odds with their weltanschauung. For example, despite a few isolated expressions of German patriotism that appear in his letters, he does not strike one as a virulent nationalist, at least not in the sense in which such a position was understood by the Nazis. As a libertarian who generally felt at ease in most of the countries of Europe, his vision appears to have transcended national barriers rather than emphasised Germanic hegemony. Furthermore, had he been alive and working during the 1930s, his well-known activities as a Freemason and his apparent willingness to collaborate with a Jewish librettist on three of his greatest operas would surely have placed him on a collision course with the regime.
Hitler at Residenzplatz on April 6, 1938. Hitler had arrived at Salzburg at 14.00 at the main train station where he was met by Gauleiter Anton Wintersteiger, General Eugen Beyer, ϟϟ Obergruppenführer Josef Dietrich, ϟϟ Obergruppenführer Franz Lorenz and various police and party officials. Accompanying Hitler were Reichsführer ϟϟ Heinrich Himmler, SA Obergruppenführer Wilhelm Brückner, Reichspressecheffer Dr. Otto Dietrich and ϟϟ group leader Julius Schaub. The entourage drove here to the residence, where a reception with party leaders including state governor Dr. Albert Reitter as well as Minister Edmund Glaise-Horstenau awaited him. Hitler signed the city's golden book and a choir of Salzburg middle school students under the direction of Prof. Friedrich Gehmacher performed a “folk song homage” and Otto Plantl recited a poem.  As a welcome gift, the city presented him with one of the most valuable objects from the Salzburg Museum Carolino Augusteum: Carl Spitzweg's painting Der Sonntagsspaziergang. He then drives to the Austrian Court from where Hitler was cheered on the balcony by spectators and then asked a boy from the crowd to enter the hall. At 15.30 the procession continued to travel through Südtirolerplatz, Rainerstraße, Dreifaltigkeitsgasse, Adolf-Hitler-Platz, Bismarckstraße, Staatsbrücke, Rathausplatz, Kranzlmarkt, Alter Markt, Residenzplatz, Domplatz, Franziskanergasse to end at the rally in the Festspielhaus which lasted until 17.00. Among the roughly 3,000 people attending were predominantly “old fighters”, and was broadcast with loudspeakers on the streets and squares of the city, where 50,000 people were expected to have listened. 6,000 SA and ϟϟ men served on security detail. The rally itself began with a flag march and speeches by district leaders and Gauleiter Fritz Wächtler; apparently first aid had to be provided in 214 cases during the rally. Hitler spoke in his speech of his supposed longing for home: "For years I dreamed of entering this country in spite of everyone who hated this hour - and now I'm here!" He eventually ended his speech with reference to the issue of an economic integration of Austria into the Reich:
We have a most magnificent goal before us, the goal of rendering this Volksgemeinschaft more profound and to integrate this country economically in the enormous cycle of our great economic life—a truly magnificent goal. I am so happy that I was allowed to create this goal and to work on it. In only a few months’ time, the tide of new creativity and new economic activity will surge through this country. In a few years, thoughts of Social Democracy and Communism will have faded like the memory of an evil spirit from a distant past, and these ideas will be laughed at... Never before have I stepped before the nation with a clearer conscience or with greater pride and confidence. I am certain: on April 10 the entire German Volk will make its greatest avowal in history. It will solemnly pledge its allegiance to the new Reich and the new community. For only if all Germans form part of a sworn-in and unified community can Germany’s future be assured for all time. Our children and grandchildren shall not have to be ashamed of their ancestors. One day they shall, with all due respect, look back to those who lived before them, to those who protected the Reich, the Reich which gives life and sustenance to them. By then, April 10 will have become one of the great days in German history. All of us greatly rejoice in the knowledge that Providence has chosen us to fashion this day.
The next day Hitler attended the breaking of new ground at the Walserberg near Salzburg for the Reich Autobahn, which was to connect Salzburg and Vienna one day. In front of an assembly of construction workers, Hitler delivered a short address, declaring
Here, too, we will begin with action immediately. I will hold you responsible, Herr Generalinspekteur [Todt], not only for commencing work here on this very day, but also for completing this first section within three years. You, my fellow workers, will help him. This bond shall tie together all of Germany and it shall serve as proof to the world that a Volk and a Reich capable of seeing through such an enormous undertaking—that these can never be separated. Now I myself will commence this work.
Subsequently, Hitler himself inaugurated the construction by digging the ceremonial first spadeful. Nonetheless, his wish did not come true that the Autobahn might be completed “within three years.” As with many of his other enterprises, the war was to end the construction work prematurely.
Roughly three miles west of Salzburg is schloss Klessheim, a Baroque palace located in Wals-Siezenheim. Due to its proximity to the Obersalzberg, Schloss Kleßheim was chosen as the "Guest House of the Führer" and served as the setting for state receptions.  The palace was designed and constructed by Austrian architect Johann Bernhard Fischer von Erlach for Prince-Archbishop Johann Ernst von Thun in 1700. It became the summer residence of the Archbishops of Salzburg. After the anschluss Hitler, when staying at his nearby Berghof residence, used Schloss Klessheim for conferences and to host official guests like Benito Mussolini, Miklós Horthy, Ion Antonescu, Jozef Tiso and Ante Pavelić. On April 16 and 17 1943, Horthy was Hitler’s guest at Klessheim castle. In addition to political and military matters, the talks mostly concerned the round-up of Hungarian Jews and their transport to concentration camps, that is, extermination camps. Horthy did not want to deal with this problem, and so Hitler felt forced to explain to him the necessity of the extermination of the Jews in the following manner
If the Jews do not want to work there, then they will be shot. If they cannot work, they will go to seed. They must be treated like the tuberculosis bacillus that can infect a healthy body. This is not cruel if you consider that even innocent creatures of nature, like the rabbit and the deer, are shot so that they cannot do harm. Why should you be more kind to these beasts, who want to bring us Bolshevism? Nations that do not fight off the Jews go to seed. The decline of the once-so-proud Persian people is one of the most famous examples of this. Today, they lead as pitiful an existence as the Armenians.
Whilst Horthy stayed at Klessheim on another occasion the following year, Hitler on March 19, 1944 secretly gave orders for Operation Margarethe to occupy Hungary and enforce the deportation of the Hungarian Jews to Auschwitz. On July 7, 1944, on the occasion of a weapons exhibition, an attempt by several Wehrmacht officers around von Stauffenberg to kill Hitler failed, when conspirator Helmuth Stieff did not trigger the bomb. Until October 1944, the palace remained outside the reach of Allied bombers. In May 1945 it was seized by the American military administration. The American commander Mark Clark had his headquarters in Schloss Klessheim like Hitler before him. Clark was pleased with Klessheim, and was under no illusions about its previous role as a guesthouse for visitors to Berchtesgaden. It had been ‘wonderfully modernised and furnished with art treasures, mostly stolen from France’. Reichsadler statues made of lime stone, that were attached to the entrance portals, remain a reminder of the Nazi era today
 
Eva Braun water-skiing on Wolfgangsee, a lake lying mostly within the state of Salzburg named after Saint Wolfgang of Regensburg, who, according to legend, built the first church here in the late 10th century.

Zell am SeeZell am See
 Drake Winston overlooking the town flanked by Nazi-era postcards.
The church and Schmittenhöhe during the Nazi-era and today with wife and kid. Years before the Nazis even took power in Germany, Zell am See organised a "Gautag der Hitlerpartei" for the 11th and 12th of October in 1930 in the district capital. At the welcome party about 250 people, mostly Germans, were involved. On Sunday at 9.00 a festive service took place in the parish church, although its pastor of Zell am See refused to allow the flags and standards inside the church. After the service, a celebration took place in the town square. Here, various speakers from neighbouring Bavaria spoke of 'Austromarxismus;' the region, directly adjacent to Bavaria, was well located geographically for supporting propaganda from Germany. A month later on November 9, 1930 National Council elections took place in Austria which would prove to be the last free, secret and democratic National Council election until 1945. The Nazis, or "Hitler movement", as it was called on the ballot paper, received around 3 percent of the vote nationally whilst in the Zell am See district alone, around 10 percent of the population voted for the “Hitler movement”. After the seizure of power by Hitler in 1933, Austrian Nazi officials found shelter in neighbouring Germany and can continued their work from there. In the spring of 1931 bloody clashes between Nazis and Social Democratic supporters occurred again and again in the Zell am See area. In April 1931, 34 Nazis held a meeting in Ferleiten. On the return trip, they were attacked by about 200 workers, and in the ensuing mêlée one person was severely injured and four persons slightly injured. In September 1932, a meeting in Zell am See ended in a bloody hall battle between the Social Democrats and the Nazis. The local organisation of the Social Democratic Party was invited under the theme "National Socialist demagogy" to a meeting in the Park Hotel on Zell am See. After the event, three people were seriously injured and ten slightly injured. The Parkhotel was badly damaged. During the parliamentary elections between the National Council election in 1930 and the state election in 1932, the Nazis made considerable gains in this area.
 
From Where Eagles Dare and the same site today
Göring visiting the town in 1942 whilst promoting the local hydroelectric plant, seen with Drake along Dreifaltigkeitsgasse. During construction work for a gliding school for the National Socialist Air Corps (NSFK ), forced labourers from the occupied war zones in the east built barracks on communal land from 1939 onwards, and the Gauleitung also ordered the construction of makeshift homes for bomb victims in Zell am See. But the air war increasingly reached the mountains, and by the end of the war there had been 459 air raid alarms, although the town itself was spared from bombing. From the beginning of Nazi rule, there were also deportations to concentration camps in Zell am See (including the former government commissioner and later district captain Franz Gasteiger), so-called 'Aryanisations'  (with favours such as the Nazis' general music director Herbert von Karajan or the Führer sculptor Joseph Thorak ) and reprisals against the population. In this regard, prison sentences were imposed several times on account of statements hostile to the regime for incitement, listening to “enemy radio stations ” or “black market slaughter.” Andreas Kronewitter, a Reichsbahn employee in Zellwas sentenced to death in 1944 and executed on the basis of letters written to his son at the front about undermining military force. In April 1945, during the Battle of Berlin, evacuation measures were carried out for the Reich government located in Berlin, the Reich ministries and the security apparatus. Only Hermann Goering went to southern Germany with his staff after Hitler had decided to stay in Berlin on April 22nd. Most of the staff to be evacuated were to move north.
The hauptplatz during Nazi rallies in 1938 and Drake Winston today. The tourist office has moved to the main street.
At the beginning of May 1945, the last Reich government was formed in Flensburg in the special area of ​​Mürwik . The Alpine fortress propagated by leading Nazis was a mirage, but towards the end of the war there were a few evacuated Wehrmacht command posts in Mittersill, Niedernsill, Maria Alm and Zell am See, and the High Command of the Luftwaffe moved into quarters in Thumersbach. In general, Zell am See also experienced the largest invasion in its history during this time. Already from1942 there were more Reich Germans and South Tyroleans were mainly settled in the “Neue Heimat” in Schüttdorf and Einöd, so in the last months of the war thousands of refugees came to Zell from the combat zones of Germany and eastern Austria. In addition to accommodation in the barracks and makeshift homes, hospitals often had to be set up in hotels and inns, and the number of inhabitants rose to over 11,000. 
The first American soldiers in Pinzgau were the paratroopers of the 101st American Airborne Division ( 101st Airborne Division ). They moved into Zell am See on May 8, 1945, the day of the unconditional surrender of the Wehrmacht. An American soldier, Charles A. Lindbergh, wrote in his war diary at this time: "Well, the highest ranks of the German army are in the area, more generals than you have ever seen in one place." A little later, the "Rainbow Division" (42nd Infantry) took over the administration, denazification and democratisation of the liberated areas in Pinzgau. The situation was confusing with American soldiers, prisoners of war, scattered German soldiers, the last members of the Waffen-SS, wounded and refugees dominating the area. These days of anarchy also claimed their last victims in the Zell am See area: In Lofer, two German soldiers were shot on May 7, 1945 for "desertion", even though the ϟϟ itself was "deserting" at the same time. On May 27, 1945, ϟϟ officer Eduard Altacher, commander of the Saalfelden barracks, was killed. Altacher disregarded the US Army's curfew and was mistreated and murdered by forced labourers and Americans. Soon American commanders, working with city officials, were able to alleviate widespread shortages of food and other necessities. It is also worth mentioning that at that time there was an American university (the Rainbow University) in the Grand Hotel with a branch in the Metzgerwirt. As everywhere else, the first years after the end of the war were difficult in Zell as the shortage of food made things difficult for the people, and there was also extensive clean-up and restoration work to be done. On May 28, 1945, the population of Zell am See doubled from 4,785 to around 9,000. But slowly everything was restored, the infrastructure on the Schmittenhöhe was continuously improved with new lifts and more spacious ski runs, and shipping was also promoted through the purchase of the Libelle boat. This was followed by municipal works, the construction of the elementary school, the adaptation and establishment of the hospital and much more. Due to the rising economy and the steadily growing tourism, Zell am See soon moved up into the front ranks of Salzburg's tourist destinations as winter tourism became more and more important and skiing found more followers.
    
 Overlooking Zell on Schmittenhöhe.
Spending a cold winter morning at castle Fischhorn. As shown in the then-and-now GIFs,  a fire on September 21, 1920 destroyed large parts of the castle. The owner had it restored by the Bremen architect Karl Wolters based on the much simpler architecture that existed before the neo-Gothic reconstruction. In May 1943 the Nazis seized the castle and the surrounding buildings. From then on, the property of the ϟϟ served as a remontage, as a riding school and from September 1944 as a sub-camp of the Dachau concentration camp. On the evening of May 7, 1945 German Corps G, First Germany Army, and the American Seventh Army had negotiated a cease-fire, and both units agreed to stop troop movements as well as to cease shooting at each other. During this time Göring sent a note to Seventh Army Headquarters in Kitzbühel informing them that he would meet the Americans at the Fischhorn Castle at Zell am See, to surrender.
As they drove up to the gaunt stone building, Göring glimpsed a G.I. and an ϟϟ officer standing guard on opposite sides of the gateway. Rather alarmingly, the castle still housed the staff of an ϟϟ cavalry division. “Guard me well,” he said, turning to his captors, but a Luftwaffe major noticed that his face was wreathed in smiles. Emmy and Heli Bouhler fell into each other’s arms as they stepped out of the cars. “When do I get to meet Eisenhower?” asked Göring. Stack answered evasively. Later, Göring returned to the matter. He turned to the interpreter. “Ask General Stack,” he said, “whether I should wear a pistol or my ceremonial dagger when I appear before Eisenhower.” “I don’t care two hoots,” retorted the general. 
Irving, Göring (686)
In May 1945, Hermann Göring was captured in Altenmarkt im Pongau by American soldiers. From May 7-9, 1945 Göring lived with Emmy and daughter Edda in castle Fischhorn before being transferred to the Grand Hotel in Kitzbühel.
The castle's story doesn't end there- Philipp Bouhler, a senior Nazi Party functionary who was both a Reichsleiter and Chief of the Chancellery of the Führer and the ϟϟ official responsible for the Aktion T4 euthanasia programme that killed more than 70,000 handicapped adults and children, as well as co-initiator of Aktion 14f13, the so-called "Sonderbehandlung" ("special treatment"), that killed 15,000–20,000 concentration camp prisoners, was arrested with his wife Helene by American troops on May 10, 1945. Thereafter, both committed suicide. His wife Helene jumped from one of the castle's windows whilst on May 19 Bouhler used a cyanide capsule whilst in the American internment camp at Zell-am-See. 
 
Innsbruck
Nazi flags on the former Adolf-Hitler-Platz (now Hofburgplatz) and, below right, Herzog-Friedrich-Straße with its Goldenem Dachl and today. Innsbruck gave the Nazi Party some of its strongest support in Austria before the Anschluss, although when, in 1921 radical nationalists stood for the first time under the name of the National Socialist Party in the Innsbruck supplementary elections, they received only 646 votes (2.8 percent). Their programme - the union of all “German peoples”, racism, anti-Semitism, “common good before self-interest” and “national community” - was more radical than that of the other parties. Despite the proletarian influence, it was most similar to that of the Greater German Party, which had ruled Innsbruck, albeit under a different name, for decades and provided the mayor until 1929. One of the National Socialist candidates was still on the municipal council for the Greater Germans in 1919. In the 1923 elections, the Nazi party won one mandate for the first time, and a second in 1925, which was held by a city teacher. In 1927, the Greater German People's Party, which had suffered significant losses in votes in the previous two ballots, formed an alliance with the National Socialists and ran under the name of the “National Unit List”. The amalgamation of the “national Innsbruck” gained votes and mandates, but not to the extent it had hoped for. In addition, the Nazi party split into a group that followed an Austrian path and one that submitted to the National Socialist German Workers' Party in the German Reich. Both Nazi parties ran separately and lost in 1929. Together they won just 1.4 percent of the vote. By the end of the year the effects of the global economic crisis were already being felt, and the established parties seemed to have no recipes to cushion them for the population. This was also evident in the number of lists that applied for votes and seats. In 1929 a total of eight parties ran for election- three from the nationalist camp - Greater Germans and two Nazi parties; three from the conservative - Tyrolean People's Party, Employees' Party, Homeowners and Innkeepers; and two from the left - Social Democracts and the Communist Party. In the run-up to the 1931 elections, there were riots and riots, especially between Nazi supporters and those of the Social Democrats, but also with the police. The Nazis end the end achieved only 4.1 percent of the vote. From autumn 1931, the Nazi Party relied on a massive propaganda campaign and public presence. Parades, torchlight procession, swastika graffiti on house walls, leaflets, bonfires in the form of swastikas - this and the promise that the Nazis would alleviate the problems of poverty and hardship created by the economic crisis caused many people to gravitate to the Nazi Party. The appointment of Hitler as chancellor across the border gave the Tyrolean Nazi Party further impetus. Before the supplementary election in April 1933, the Nazi party presented itself as a saviour, promising that Austria would flourish like the German Reich under the leadership of Hitler. That election on April 24, 1933, saw them gain a remarkable 14,996 votes (41.2 percent). After the Nazi Party was banned in mid-June after the Dolfuß assassination, the Nazis lost their seats. A few months later the government banned the Social Democratic Party and the Austro-Fascist self-appointed corporate state ruled dictatorially until March 1938 and the “Anschluss”.
During the anschluß and on the occasion of Hitler's visit on April 5, 1939. Hitler would return March 18, 1940 when his train stopped over ifor him to to review an honour guard. According to the Party newspaper, he was “very touched by the enthusiasm demonstrated by the Tiroleans.” Significantly, they sang the “Englandlied” to greet him. It wouldn't be until the catastrophic defeat of the 6th Army in Stalingrad in February 1943 that Innsbruck and other Austrian towns began to feel the impact of the war. With the surrender of Army Group Africa in Tunisia and the landing of the Anglo-Americans in Sicily, the Allies were able to open a new air front from the south. The Gau Tirol-Vorarlberg was now within range of their and the Gau, which until then had been completely spared from the bombing war, suddenly became of strategic interestgiven that war production was increasingly being relocated here as well as the fact that the Inn valley and the Brenner route had become extremely important for German supplies after the Wehrmacht occupied Italy in September 1943. Already on September 1, American planes bombed the train stations of Bolzano and Trento, and on October 1st, the first air raid on the Gau in Feldkirch killed 210 people. Now the neglect of the Nazi regime, which had completely neglected the air raid shelter out of confident arrogance, is taking its toll. Shortly before the first attack on Innsbruck, the Tyrol-Vorarlberg district group of the Reichs Luftschutzbund had expressly pointed out that the "production of tunnels for air defense purposes was completely prohibited." In the summer of 1943, some flak batteries were installed in and around Innsbruck (Tiergarten, Höttinger Au, at the First Tyrolean Workers Bakery, at Tivoli, in Rum, Natters, Lans, Vill, Zirl) and along the Brenner route, but in view of the increasing threat to the In the Gau area, such defences in no way corresponded to the necessities. The regime also had to fall back on 15 to 17-year-old students as air force helpers and Soviet prisoners of war for air defence. On December 15, 1943, the 15th US Air Force used its strategic location, which had been improved by the new bases in the Foggia area, for the first time and launched the first and most disastrous of a total of 22 attacks on Innsbruck. 48 B17 Fortress bombers and 39 P38 fighters dropped 126 tonnes of bombs over the Gau capital to destroy the railway systems. The result was devastating: 269 dead, 500 wounded, 1,627 homeless and massive material damage, especially in the city centre. The causes of the devastating effects of this first attack on Innsbruck lay in the antiquated gun material of the flak, the lack of experienced soldiers and bomb-proof security rooms as well as the complete failure of the warning system. Even before the worst damage had been repaired, the next attack took place on December 19, which, however, met with far greater resistance from the Tyrolean air defence. In addition, for the first (and last) time, there were aerial battles between German fighters and American aircraft. Whilst five American bombers were shot down, the Luftwaffe lost at least 24 aircraft; probably even 38. The consequences of this attack for the Innsbruck population were seventy deaths. Seven 17-18 year old foreign boys were hanged as looters because they had bought clothes and were caught secretly eating bread and jam. A 34-year-old Tyrolean who stole valuable clothes from the suitcase of a bomb refugee from Innsbruck was sentenced to death by the Innsbruck Special Court. Since there were no more attacks on Innsbruck until June 1944, there was time to increase the effectiveness of the air defence by expanding the use of school children and apprentices on the flak and, from November and December 1944, by a larger number of Hungarian soldiers and flak batteries from Italy. Incredibly, it wasn't until January 1944 that the Nazi regime set about building air raid tunnels that offered the Innsbruck population some safe protection. As a result, 8,901 metres of tunnel would be built within a few months through the concentration of funds on Innsbruck and the predominant use of foreign workers, forced labourers and prisoners of war or of the "labour education camp Reichenau" under the supervision of local construction companies. For example, in March 1944 in Innsbruck, in addition to 75 domestic workers, 491 foreign and forced labourers and 112 prisoners of war were working on such tunnel construction. 
Maria-Theresien-Straße
From June 1944 onwards there were again attacks in Innsbruck, albeit with relatively few deaths. The bombing along the Brenner route between Verona and Munich, which now became a main target, increased in intensity to such an extent that it quickly became apparent that the Gau Tirol-Vorarlberg was a "fortress without a roof" and the flak units of the Allied air fleet and their bomb carpets had nothing equivalent to oppose. This so-called "Brenner Battle", which the American Air Force aimed to disrupt the supplies for the Wehrmacht in Italy, lasted uninterrupted until April 25, 1945. The heaviest attack on Innsbruck towards the end of the war took place on December 16, 1944 at which, in addition to the main train station, also the city center (town hall, cathedral, city hall, regional court, etc.) was badly hit. That is why there were a particularly large number of magistrate officials among the 35 dead. This bomb attack, in which incendiary bombs were also used, differed significantly from all other attacks on Innsbruck. Until then, targets of strategic importance to the war effort had been bombed, this time the focus was on civilian targets. In this context, the Nazi press spoke of the enemy in the West, "who has recently proven through his murderous and fire terror against the defenseless that he differs in no way from the Asian beasts in the East - unless it is through greater cowardice."
The Allied bombing had not led to the hoped-for demoralization of the civilian population, but it did lead to general physical and psychological exhaustion. The Americans saw the successful bombing of the Brenner route as one of the main factors behind the surrender of the German troops in Italy and the failure of a "final battle" on Tyrolean soil. As a result of the air war, around 1,500 bomb victims were mourned in the former Tyrol-Vorarlberg district, a third of them in Innsbruck (504 people). Innsbruck also bore the brunt of the material damage. 80 percent of the total damage concerned the state capital. Almost 54% of the buildings and almost 60% of the apartments in Innsbruck were damaged,destroyed or uninhabitable. The worst damage occurred in the districts of Wilten and Pradl, in the vicinity of the train station as well as in Maria-Theresien-Straße and the old town.The liberation of InnsbruckIn the last weeks of the war more and more people joined the small, heterogeneous resistance groups that Karl Gruber had united. When the Americans threatened to bomb and completely destroy Innsbruck on May 2, 1945 if the Nazis didn't surrender the city, Innsbruck was surrendered the next day without a fight after Gauleiter Franz Hofer had previously forbidden any resistance in a radio address.

Kitzbühel
Kitzbühel
Kitzbühel was fortunate to be spared from destruction in the First and Second World Wars. During the Nazi period from 1938 to 1945, Kitzbuhel was a holiday destination among leading Nazis. Speer, Göring and Riefenstahl were guests; Foreign Minister Ribbentrop bought a farm in the village of Bichlach. At the same time, a communist resistance group organised in Kitzbühel, with connections to Berlin's Robert Uhrig. Five members of the group, Anton Rausch, Andreas Obernauer, Joseph Pair, Viktor da Pont and Ignaz Zloczower, were arrested and murdered in 1942 after being spied on by the Gestapo. Novelist and sports writer Budd Schulberg, assigned by the American navy to the OSS for intelligence work whilst attached to John Ford's documentary unit, had been ordered to arrest Riefenstahl at her chalet in here in Kitzbühel, ostensibly to have her identify Nazi war criminals in German film footage captured by the Allied troops shortly after the war. At this point Riefenstahl claimed not to have been aware of the nature of the internment camps. According to Schulberg, "[s]he gave me the usual song and dance. She said, 'Of course, you know, I'm really so misunderstood. I'm not political'".

Bad Radkersburg
Bad Radkersburg Bad Radkersburg, on the Slovenian border (where it is known as Radgona). In the course of the 19th century language conflict, nationalist struggles in the ethnically mixed area arose between the predominantly German-speaking citizens and the Slovene-speaking peasant population down the Mur River. A garrison town of the Austro-Hungarian Army during the Great War, it was occupied by troops of the newly emerged Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes (Yugoslavia) on December 1, 1918. An armed revolt against the occupation forces, led by Johann Mickl, in order to affiliate the town with German-Austria failed. Nevertheless, by resolution of the 1919 Treaty of Saint-Germain, the area north of the Mur passed to the First Austrian Republic, whilst Oberradkersburg (Gornja Radgona) and the neighbouring municipality of Apače (Abstall), on the south bank, became part of Yugoslavia.  The nationalist conflicts lingered on, on both sides of the border. During the war many members of the German minority greeted the Wehrmacht invasion of Yugoslavia in 1941 and joined the German combat units, while large parts of Radkersburg were devastated by armed conflicts. After the war, most of the remaining German-speaking population south of the Mur was forcibly expelled.

Kufstein
Kufstein
Nazi flag on the Römerhofgaße in front of the Auracher Löchl on the left, and on the Italian-Austrian border during the war and today with baby Drake Winston. In 1938 Kufstein became the connection of Austria to the German Reichkreisstadt in the Gau Tirol-Vorarlberg. Even before the anschluss high-ranking Nazis such as Himmler, Göring, Heß and Hitler himself enjoyed staying in Kufstein around 1930, sitting on the terrace of the Hotel Egger for meetings or hiking in the mountains. Hartmann Lauterbacher, who ran a chemist's in the town, founded a “German Youth” group with fifty youths which was later incorporated into the Hitler Youth making it in 1923 the first Nazi-oriented youth group in Austria. Shortly before the end of the war, the city was bombed and attacked with artillery, destroying many historic buildings. After the end of the war, Kufstein was occupied by the Americans and the French.

Gröbming
Nazi Gröbming Adolf-Hitler-Platz and today. During the war, Gröbming hosted thousands of refugees. Between 11.00 and 11.10 on March 11, 1944, three American aircraft arriving from Öblarn attacked Gröbming station killing two men- Otto Kar and Werner Ulbrich- with minor resulting building damage. Later that month on the 25th Gröbming's railway station was bombarded by two fighter bombers approaching from Schladming between 13.00 and 13.15, damaging a locomotive. On February 20, 1945 from 14.55 to 15.20 a passenger train on the Klachau - Bad Mitterndorf railway line was attacked by six American planes approaching from Gröbming damaging a locomotive and eight carriages.

Bad Leonfelden
Bad Leonfelden
 Schloss Brunnwald, built between 1724-1727 in the midst of a forest as an hunting lodge. A fire in 1898 badly damaged it but by 1905 it had been rebuilt. In 1939 the castle was confiscated by the Nazis to serve as an NSV Müttererholungsheim. After the war services were held for the large number of refugees within.

Friesach 
Nazi FriesachNazi flags flying from the Hotel Friesacher Hof and the town today. It was here where famed mountaineer and writer Heinrich Harrer lived and is buried. He is best known for being on the four-man climbing team that made the first ascent of the North Face of the Eiger in Switzerland, and for his book Seven Years in Tibet which was later made into a film starring Brad Pitt in the role of Harrer. Escaping from British internment in India during the war, Harrer and his colleague Aufschnaiter (familiar with the Tibetan language), reached Lhasa on January 15, 1946. In 1948, Harrer became a salaried official of the Tibetan government, translating foreign news and acting as the Court photographer. Harrer first met the 14th Dalai Lama when he was summoned to the Potala Palace and asked to make a film about ice skating, which Harrer had introduced to Tibet. Harrer built a cinema for him, with a projector run off a Jeep engine. Harrer soon became the Dalai Lama's tutor in English, geography, and some science, and Harrer was astonished at how fast his pupil absorbed the Western world's knowledge. A strong friendship developed between the two that would last the rest of their lives. 
Standing in front of the Potala palace which served as Harrer's home during his period of exile. By the time he died in 2006, Harrer's Nazi past came back to haunt him. A decade earlier film-maker Gerald Lehner found in American archives the Harrer's SA membership card dated October 1933. After the Anschluss Harrer immediately joined the ϟϟ holding the rank of Oberscharführer, and on May 1, 1938 he became a member of the Nazi Party. After their ascent of the Eiger North Face he and his colleagues were formally received by and photographed with Hitler. Harrer later said he wore his ϟϟ uniform only once when he married Charlotte Wegener, daughter of eminent explorer and scholar Alfred Wegener. Nevertheless, when Harrer returned to Europe in 1952, he was cleared of any pre-war crimes and would describe in his book Beyond Seven Years in Tibet his involvement with the Nazi Party a mistake made in his youth when he had not yet learned to think for himself.

Kapfenberg
Kapfenberg Hitler-platzAdolf-Hitler-Platz with the Altes Rathaus then and now. After the annexation of Austria in 1938, Kapfenberg's industrial facilities were expanded and expanded to meet the requirements of the massive military rearmament. Since the area around the main plant in the valley of the Thörlbach offered too little space, construction of the plant VI in the north-east of the city was begun. Additional underground tunnelling systems, some of which are still preserved, were built in order to be able to continue production in an emergency. Böhler also founded the non-profit Mürz-Ybbs-Siedlungs-A.G in 1938, which began with the construction of the Hochschwab settlement. In 1943, with the support of Böhler, the municipality decided to found a trolleybus company, Mürzaler Verkehrsgesellschaft m.b.H. (MVG). Soon after the Anschluss, the Antifascist Front, a resistance movement with about one hundred members, formed in Kapfenberg. One of the most important organisers was Anton Buchalka, who was executed in 1941 in Berlin. For the large number of war prisoners and forced labourers who were employed in war production at Boehler, several barracks camps were erected at the Schirmitzbühel, near the plant VI, in Hafendorf and Winkl. From November 1944 to May 1945, the facilities of Böhler, the station and the freight station were attacked several times by Allied bombers in Kapfenberg. After the end of the war, the city was occupied by Soviet soldiers on May 9, 1945, who were then fortunately replaced by British occupiers on July 24 1945. A DP camp was set up for about six hundred Jewish and non-Jewish so-called displaced persons.

Lienz
Lienz Adolf-Hitler-Platz Adolf-Hitler-Platz with the Nazi Eagle-topped memorial and today. After the First World War the southern parts of the former Cisleithanian crown land of Tyrol (Trentino and South Tyrol) were awarded to the Kingdom of Italy under the terms of the London Pact and the 1919 Treaty of Saint-Germain, making the Lienz district of East Tyrol an exclave with no territorial connection to the mainland of North Tyrol. As a result of this and the effects of the economic crisis, the number of unemployed rose massively in Lienz. It was only from 1937 that an improvement in the employment figures could be observed. Modest growth in tourism was hampered by the imposition of the Thousand-Mark barrier, and greater investment in tourism remained in Lienz as a result. With the opening of the new building of the district hospital in 1931, however, an important infrastructure project could be realised. In 1936, the Lienzer garrison was also installed and the modernisation of the city began in the 1920s. From the February fighting in the course of the Austrian Civil War in 1934 Lienz was spared, but the Lienzer garrison was used in the crushing of the fighting in neighbouring Carinthia. In the 1930s, the Nazis succeeded in gaining a foothold in East Tyrol, albeit only to a modest extent. In 1933, 150 Lienzers were still members of the Nazi Party, with the share of Nazi members being comparatively low compared to other surrounding municipalities. After the 1938 Anschluss of the Federal State of Austria into Nazi Germany, the Lienz district became a part of the "Reichsgau" of Carinthia and with it the integration of the population into the Nazi organisations. The four Jews were expelled from Lienz as early as 1938; in Lienz, according to the Nazis' classification, two families, whose members were partially classified as "full or half Jews". Although two members of one of these families were to be deported to Dachau for several weeks, the families were not killed by the Nazi persecution although at least twelve were eventually murdered in concentration camps or were poisoned.
The annexation of East Tyrol to the Gau Carinthia took place in October 1938. Lienz also experienced population growth through the settlement of several hundred South Tyroleans, who had decided to resettle in the German Reich. For the new arrivals the so-called South Tyrolean settlement was built in typical Nazi construction.
Towards the end of the war, several bomb attacks on Lienz occurred, the first attack on June 13, 1944, meeting the district of Peggetz. As a result, the population was often destroyed by minor and major bombings, with the heaviest bombings taking place on February 5 and April 26, 1945. A total of about a thousand bombs were dropped on Lienz, killing thirteen people and destroying 19 buildings, including the station. thirty buildings were also heavily damaged, twelve medium and 41 slightly damaged. Altogether about 360 Lienzers were killed in the war.
On May 8, 1945 victorious British forces occupied Lienz, which together with Carinthia and Styria became part of the British occupation zone. At this time several thousand members of the former Wehrmacht 1st Cossack Division coming from Yugoslavia had arrived in and around Lienz who then surrendered to the British troops before being forcibly repatriated to the Soviet Union. These Cossacks who had fought alongside the Germans had been saved from Soviet troops in a British-controlled area. The Cossacks, however, were handed over to Soviet units by the British army in June 1945, and hundreds of Cossacks died by suicide or were killed in the tragedy on the Drava.