Dorset

Duke of Windsor's Nazi visit photo album to be sold

Duke of Windsor and Adolf Hitler Image copyright Duke's of Dorchester/PA Wire
Image caption The former King Edward VIII was welcomed by Adolf Hitler

Photographs showing the Duke of Windsor's visit to Nazi Germany in 1937 are expected to fetch up to £1,000 at auction.

The album was compiled by the former King Edward VIII's equerry, Sir Dudley Forwood, and has been in his family ever since.

It features 60 photos, some previously unseen, of the duke meeting Nazis, including Adolf Hitler.

The album is due to be sold at Duke's of Dorchester on 10 March.

Image copyright Duke's of Dorchester/PA
Image caption The trip was arranged so that Wallis Simpson (right) could experience a state visit

It details the visit the duke took with his new wife Wallis Simpson.

Sir Dudley said years later that the trip was made, not in order to support the Nazi regime, as many thought, but so that the Duchess could experience a state visit.

The equerry's invitation to the funeral of the Duchess of Windsor in 1986 is also being sold.

Image copyright Duke's of Dorchester/PA
Image caption The Duke of Windsor met miners while in Germany in 1937
Image copyright Duke's of Dorchester/PA
Image caption The photos show the duke meeting several Nazis on his trip

Timothy Medhurst, of the auction house, said: "It shows the couple in a relaxed environment being shown around by Nazis who are clearly proud of their nation.

"It is a unique piece of history compiled at a time when the Nazi war machine was preparing for European conquest and the systematic slaughter of millions of people."

The photographs show the duke and his wife visiting many places, including a mine, a winter relief headquarters, a lightbulb factory and a school.

Image copyright Duke's of Dorchester/PA
Image caption The pictures are expected to fetch up to £1,000 at auction
Image copyright Duke's of Dorchester/PA
Image caption There are more than 60 photos in the album, some previously unseen

Edward and Wallis

  • The only British sovereign to abdicate voluntarily, Edward stepped down in 1936 to marry the American divorcee Wallis Simpson
  • They married in June 1937 and were given the titles of Duke and Duchess of Windsor
  • For the next two years they lived mainly in France
  • After the outbreak of war, Edward was appointed governor of the Bahamas
  • He died of throat cancer in 1972 in Paris and was buried near Windsor
  • Wallis died in 1986 and was laid to rest alongside her husband

Source: BBC History


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