Dietrich Eckart - Master of the Occult and Hitler's Mentor

© Copyright Peter Crawford 2013
© Copyright Peter Crawford 2013
Master of the Occult and Hitler's Mentor

To an outsider who did not know the connection, Hitler's dedication of his second edition of his book 'Mein Kampf' to a man that few would have heard of before, would seem incomprehensible.
Having referred to the eighteen fallen heros, who had died at the during the abortive November putsch,  he then ends his work by saying,

"Together with those, and as one of the best of all, I should like to mention the name of a man who devoted his life to reawakening his and our people, through his writing and his ideas and finally through positive action. I mean Dietrich Eckart".

Dietrich Eckart ? Who was he ?
He is not mentioned anywhere else in Hitler's book.
It is as if he has been plucked from the air, and inserted, ad-lib, at the end of the book.
However, Hitler had good reason to thank this mystery man.
It would be through him that Hitler would realise his destiny.
© Copyright Peter Crawford 2013
Dietrich Eckart (23 March 1868 – 26 December 1923) was a German journalist and politician who, together with Adolf Hitler, was one of the early key members of the National Socialist German Workers Party (NSDAP), and a participant of the 1923 Munich Putsch.


JOHANN DIETRICH ECKART was born on March 23, 1868 in Neumarkt, an Upper Palatinate town in Bavaria of 4,500 souls near Nuremberg.

Stadtwappen - Neumark - Oberpfalz
© Copyright Peter Crawford 2013
Lying just a few miles southeast of Nurnberg, it is known for the ruins of castle 'Wolfstein'.
His father, Christian, was a lawyer; his mother, Anna, a typical nineteenth century Hausfrau who mothered three other children as well.
Anna Bosner Eckart, was the daughter of a Bavarian Army quartermaster.
She tried to raise Dietrich and his three siblings as Catholics, though her husband was Evangelical Lutheran.

Unterer Markt - Klostergasse - Neumarkt Oberpfalz
Her youngest daughter died as a young child.
Dietrich suffered from a variety of illnesses. Family members recollected that his mother always seemed to be nursing him back to health.
Anna has been described as a dreamy and sensitive soul. Unfortunately, this delicate hausfrau died of influenza in her thirties during the winter of 1878.
Ten year old Dietrich never recovered psychologically from that blow, and episodes of depression plagued him for the rest of his life.

Hofkirche - Neumarkt In der Oberpfalz
Dietrich’s father, Georg Christian Eckart, practiced law and served as Neumarkt’s royal notary. In 1888 Prince Regent Luitpold appointed him a district justice.
Christian Eckart had a reputation for being tough, but fair, and his word was rarely contradicted in Neumarkt.
Judge Eckart assumed a dictatorial mien, and treated local farmers as country bumpkins. Dietrich later emulated his father’s decisiveness, air of authority, and readiness to pass judgment on others.
Eckart senior’s professional duties completely preoccupied him.
It was after his wife's death that the family moved to Nurnberg, where the boy attended the local Gymnasium.
Like most workaholics Georg Christian left something to be desired as a father, alternately ignoring and browbeating Dietrich and Wilhelm.

Schwabach - Königsplatz
From Nurnberg he enrolled in the Lateinschule in Schwabach.

Stadtwappen Regensburg
© Copyright Peter Crawford 2013

At Regensburg Dietrich met lifelong friend Karl Guido von Bomhard, the headmaster’s son. Twenty year old Dietrich Eckart went off to the University of Erlangen
In 1885 he transferred to school in Regensburg and three years later his first poem was printed in the local newspaper.

Stadtwappen Erlangen
© Copyright Peter Crawford 2013
He attended the University of Erlangen as a medical student, but was forced to withdraw upon contracting a serious childhood illness.
His doctor prescribed morphine as a pain killer and this later developed into an unvoluntary addiction to the drug.
He did not finish school.
Twenty year old Dietrich Eckart went off to the University of Erlangen in 1888.
Stadtwappen München
© Copyright Peter Crawford 2013

At his father’s insistence, he studied law, but hated the subject and changed his major to medicine, which he studied at the Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich.
There he was an  fencing and drinking corps member, but finally decided in 1891 to work as a poet, playwright and journalist ,and in 1894 he became a music critic for the Bayreuther Briefe newspaper and wrote essays on the Wagnerfest.

Eckart as a Student
As a college student Dietrich willfully eschewed practical pursuits, devoting his efforts to poetry, drama, philosophy, fencing, and revelry.

Onoldia Corps Erlangen
He joined his father’s old dueling fraternity, 'The Onoldia Corps Erlangen' (originally founded by Carl Freiherr von Pollnitz in 1798.)
As a frat brother Eckart dueled, caroused, and fully indulged his appetite for mischief.
Though once suspended for misbehavior, he eventually became Onoldia’s 'Master of Ceremonies'.
That office required him to write ditties which celebrated beer-drinking, comradeship, and German patriotism.
Later in life he utilized this ability to write advertising slogans and song lyrics.
The University recognized his literary talent by accepting a prologue he wrote for graduation ceremonies.

Kaiser Wilhelm I
In 1888 Eckart also received payment from Regensburg’s leading newspaper for his eulogy commemorating the death of Kaiser Wilhelm I.
The Onoldia Corps fostered Eckart’s life-long penchants for drinking, male camaraderie, song, and factionalism.
German dueling fraternities, of course, served as hothouses for German nationalism and anti-Semitism.
Although it had more of a reputation for partying than political activism, Onoldia Corps adopted the Teutonia Fraternity’s “Aryan Clause” of 1877, which barred Jews and foreigners from membership.

Rudolf Heinrich Greinz
Around this time, Eckart wrote an article entitled “Hypnosis and the Novel” for  Rudolf Heinrich Greinz’s Cultural & Literary Illustrated.
He theorized that the fictional characters dreamed up in creative “trance states” often represented authors’ own alter egos. This was an early indication of his interest in occult and esoteric matters.
Eckart's German biographer, Margarete Plewnia, affirmed that Eckart was a cultured man, well-versed in works by Plutarch, Plato, Luther, Angelus Silesius, Pascal, Spinoza, Shakespeare, Ibsen, Goethe, Kant, Nietzsche, Schopenhauer, Heine, Nietzsche, and Bismarck.

Guido von List
He was also interested in the anti-Semitic writings of Paul Lagarde, the psychology of Otto Weininger, and the scientific theories of Ernst Haeckl, as well as and Ariosophic philosophy of Guido von List.

Arthur Schopenhauer
Of the mainstream thinkers, Heinrich Heine, Arthur Schopenhauer, and Angelus Silesius exerted the most influence on him as a young man.
In the course of his reading at the University of Erlangen Eckart discovered Heinrich Heine and Arthur Schopenhauer, two authors of opposite temperament.
The poet Heinrich Heine was his first literary model.
He admired the “realistic romanticism” espoused by Heine’s 'Young Germany' movement, and his original style, which creatively utilized irony, slang, and poetic license.

Heinrich Heine
Arno Breker
Eckart identified with the alienation his idol experienced as an expatriate artist victimized by philistines.
Like Heine, he was attracted to poetry, theater, journalism, and philosophy.
With regard to Heine Eckart wrote “ Heinrich Heine: A Selection of his Poetry for Women and Youths, with Foreword and Biography” 1893.)
In his adulatory preface he attacked the poet’s critics as “bigots and reactionaries,”.
Eckart strongly identified with Heine’s “…lack of interest in formal studies, … agony in setting out on a career.” 
Though he outgrew his enthusiasm for Heine, the pessimism of Arthur Schopenhauer’s philosophy stayed with Eckart for life.
In an epigrammatic style Schopenhauer’s 'The World As Will and Idea' argued that the human will strove toward no rational end.
Men rarely got what they wanted and couldn’t be satisfied with what they had.
Schopenhauer’s extensive reading of Buddhist scriptures strongly affected his philosophy.
He accepted Buddha’s view that most men were dazzled by Maya’s illusory dance, and the Buddhist tenet that life consisted mainly of pain and ennui.
Young Epicureans like Eckart might derive transient comfort from food, drink, sports, sexual love, art, the humanities, or a detached philosophical attitude, but they still had a spiritual duty to penetrate “Maya’s Veil” (the world of appearances) and arrive at Truth.
Schopenhauer viewed “Romantic folly” as misleading and unphilosophical.
Thus, he advocated literary realism with its anti-heroes and naturalistic depiction of life’s seamier side.
Eckart’s plain speaking and cynicism both derive from Schopenhauer’s gloomy outlook.
As a young man Dietrich Eckart also developed an appreciation for the poetry of Angelus Silesius, nom de plume of Johannes Scheffer (1624 – 1677), a German-Polish physician and priest educated at the University of Padua.

Jakob Boehme
Silesius wrote 'The Soul’s Spiritual Delight', a hymn book, 'The Cherubic Pilgrim', a collection of poetry, and scores of theological treatises.
Eckart especially liked 'Cherubic Pilgrim', which consisted of 1,600 rhymed couplets on religious themes.
Although a convert from Lutheranism to Catholicism, Silesius admired the pantheism of occultist Jakob Boehme.
A worn copy of 'Der Cherubinische Wandersmann' always stood on Eckart’s night stand.
Its mystical verse reinforced his opposition to crass materialism.
In 1893 Eckart published two books at his own expense: the appreciation of Heine, and “In the Foreign Land.” a small volume of his own poetry.
Eckart borrowed his title “In Der Fremde” from Heine’s famous poem about alienation.
“In the Foreign Land” contains poems about fleeting youth, a prodigal son, and the anxieties of modern times.

Bayreuth  Festspielhaus
Richard Wagner
Eckart became an avid admirer of Wagner’s operas as a young man.
The ambience of Bayreuth during the festival thoroughly entranced him.
Hitler, who accompanied him there in 1923, confirmed that “Eckart … had always told me of the extraordinary atmosphere prevailing there.”
The Augsberger Abendzeitung Literary supplement accepted a few articles and poems from Eckart in 1893, including an essay about Germany’s long term prospects entitled “A Question on our Future.”
'Sammler Magazine' published two short stories.
Eckart convinced the  Abendzeitung to let him cover the Wagnerfest in June, 1894.

Bayreuth  Festspielhaus
His “Letters from Bayreuth” praised Wagner, while deriding ticket-scalpers, ostentatious foreigners, and the inferior quality of some performances.
This popular series was picked up by several newspapers, including 'Bayreuther Briefe' and 'Munchener Abendzeitung'.
Eckart’s reputation as a witty critic helped him sell articles on art, culture, and politics to the same papers.

Cosima Wagner
Cosima Wagner, the composer’s widow, invited him to one of her parties.
Shortly after that soiree the Bayreuth Festival commissioned him to write program notes for Wagner's greatest and last work, 'Parsifal'.
The 'Munchner Augsberger Abendzeitung' was also publishing his Bayreuth columns and printed his first two short stories.
This success led him to Berlin, where he skillfully attacked leading marxists and socialists of the day.
His work 'Tannhauser Auf Urlaub', completed in 1895, mentions Jews in a disparaging way and is thought to be his first anti-Semitic piece.

Steinerne Bruecke - Regensburg
The following year his father passed away, and Eckart inherited a fair sum of money which he quickly invested in a home in Regensburg.
Following his father’s death in 1895, Eckart inherited a substantial amount of money.
In early 1896 he made his first trip to Berlin to see the opening of Hauptmann’s play 'Die Versunkene Glocke'.
The capital’s bustling dynamism impressed him, but he decided to rent quarters in Regensburg, where he had previously attended boarding school with his friend Karl Guido Bomhard.

After a year, Eckart decided to move on to Leipzig, the center of German publishing, with the intention of setting up a salon there.
Konrad Heiden described Eckart as “a Swabian who appreciated good living.”
He was a trencherman who could easily consume twenty sausages along with tureen of sauerkraut, while washing all down with six pints of beer.
A connoisseur of coffee, Eckart bought gourmet roasted beans from South America and Africa, then ground them with his hand-crank coffee mill every morning.
When flush with money, he smoked fifteen or more cigars per day.
All forms of alcohol appealed to him: beer, wine, schnapps, whiskey, absinthe.
In the course of his life, he carried on several love affairs.
Rumor had it that he engaged in homosexuality in his youth, and again while in Berlin between 1906 and 1911.
His restless wanderings from Neumarkt to Regensburg, Leipzig, Berlin, Bad Blankenburg, Munich, and Berchtesgaden might have been “geographic solutions” – futile attempts to escape his problems by moving to new places.
Always a 'big spender', and generous with friends, and Eckart squandered his patrimony on high living in Leipzig.

Alfred Rosenberg
According to Alfred Rosenberg he simply “could not say no to a friend and would give up his last cent even if it meant (going) without.”
Wanting to recreate the festivity of 'Onoldia Corps', Eckart fully indulged his tastes for alcohol and humorous repartee as a habitué of Leipzig’s bar scene.
By 1897 his funds ran low.
He left Leipzig and went back to Regensburg. 
While there he wrote a four page article that would later appear in 'Sammler Magazine' September 16, 1899 edition, “The Culture of the 19th Century,” which extolled the realism of Heine, Balzac, Schopenhauer, and Ibsen, while scoffing at hazy symbolic works written by“nervous weaklings”, however, he warned that lurid naturalism could never create an inspiring vision for New Germany.

Eckart moved to Berlin in the autumn of 1899.
Germany’s new capital, with its forty theaters, plethora of newspapers, and world-class orchestra, had become the Empire’s cultural center.
Theater critic Willy Haas described the city’s vitality in 'Die Literarische Welt':
I loved the rapid, quick-witted reply of the Berlin woman above everything, the keen, clear reaction of the Berlin audience in the theater, in the cabaret, on the street, and in the café, that taking-nothing-solemnly yet taking seriously of things, that lovely, dry, cool and yet not cold atmosphere, the indescribable dynamic, the love for work, the readiness to take hard blows--- and go on living.”
Eckart joined thousands of immigrants to Berlin.
The city had grown from a town to major metropolis since Napoleon’s defeat in 1812.
Its Jewish population increased thirty-fold during that same period.
However, very few were of the 'Ostjuden' variety.
Berlin’s Jews had a reputation for being secular, and well-assimilated.
The publication of three articles in Sammler magazine kept Eckart solvent for the remainder of 1899.
In early 1900 he worked briefly for August Scherl’s tabloid 'Lokalanzeiger', but intensely disliked its shallowness and lack of German values.
He became an editor of the Berlin Lokalanzeiger newspaper in 1900, and wrote regular columns for two cultural publications; 'Bühne und Welt' (The Stage and the World) and 'Kunst und Wissenschaft' (Art and Science).

Eckart was bitter, but in 1901 was rewarded with the publication of an essay in one of Germany's leading magazines, 'Simplicissimus'.

Simplicissimus was a satirical German weekly magazine started by Albert Langen in April 1896 and published until 1967, with a hiatus from 1944-1954. It became a biweekly in 1964. It took its name from the protagonist of Grimmelshausen's 1668 novel 'Der Abenteuerliche Simplicissimus Teutsch'.
Combining brash and politically daring content, with a bright, immediate, and surprisingly modern graphic style, Simplicissimus published the work of writers such as Thomas Mann and Rainer Maria Rilke. Its most reliable targets for caricature were stiff Prussian military figures, and rigid German social and class distinctions as seen from the more relaxed, liberal atmosphere of Munich. 

He came to see himself as a Teutonic sage in the modern world.
The Morning hired him in 1901.
For that paper he wrote not only news reports and opinion columns, but play reviews, poems, short stories, and a serialized novella which satirized the German press.
Unfortunately, this dream job ended when 'The Morning' went bankrupt four months later.
Eckart recycled his criticisms of nihilistic modern journalism into a tragicomedy entitled 'Familienvater'.
In 1901Germany’s premiere humor magazine, 'Simplicissmus', devoted an entire issue to his short story “Der Kleine Martin Bauz,” which poked fun at the abysmal “guidance” given an eight year old boy by his teacher, doctor, pastor, and drunken parents.
“Martin Bauz” highlighted the breakdown of values besetting turn-of-the century Germany.
With encouragement from friends Eckart published four articles and several poems in 'Buhne und Brettle Magazine' between March and May, 1902.
This periodical had changed from a theatrical review to a journal of political commentary.
One issue, illustrated with caricatures and accompanied by unsigned “Eckartian” verse, lampooned the “monolithic Jewish clique” which controlled Berlin theater.
Those satirized included Siegfried Jacobsohn, Fritz Engel, Georg Hirschfeld, Oscar Bies, Maximilien Harden, Hermann Sudermann, Max Osborn, Alfred Klaar, and Max Reinhardt.
In one article Eckart significantly referred to Jewish playwrights George Hirschfeld and Hermann Suderman as “ghetto writers” who treated drama as “just another commodity.”
In the early 1900’s Eckart reinforced his Judeophobia by reading excerpts from Henri-Roger Gougenot des Mousseaux’s 'The Jew, Judaism, and the Judaization of Christian Peoples' (1869), originally published in France.
Gougenot des Mousseaux (1805-1876), a minor French nobleman of bookish disposition, acquired the reputation of an authority on magic, Celtic folklore, ultramontane Catholicism, and demonology.
His anti-Jewish invective bridged the gap between theological and modern anti-Semitism.
He held that Christianity had rendered Judaism obsolete over 1,800 years ago.
Thus, contemporary Jews, like the devil, were incorrigible deniers of revealed truth.
St. Paul declared Satan “Prince of the Air” (or Physical World.)
Because they combined alleged prurience with phenomenal acumen for commerce and dialectical reasoning, Gougenot surmised that Jews might be the products of interbreeding between demons and humans.
Jewish influence had burgeoned since the emergence of France’s middle class after the 1789 Revolution, in almost direct proportion to the debilitation of Church and aristocracy.
In alliance with Freemasons, Jews now threatened to take over Europe.
Gougenot blamed them for every crisis, including gentile bank failures, the Franco-Prussian War, and deterioration of established moral standards.
In his capacity as President of Coulommiers’ St. Vincent DePaul Society chapter, Gougenot met Vatican librarian David Paul Drach (1791-1868), a former rabbi who converted to Catholicism.
Archbishop Quelen of Paris baptized Drach, his two daughters, and son on Holy Saturday, 1823.
Shortly after his conversation, Drach’s Jewish wife disappeared with their three children.
Two years later, following a widely publicized police investigation and lawsuit, he divorced his wife, obtained custody of the children, and embarked on the career of a Catholic scholar.
With the Holy See’s imprimatur Drach published several books, including a new French Bible translation, a Hebrew-Latin dictionary, a learned treatise on the Jewish Kaballah, and his most popular work, 'Letters of a Converted Rabbi to his Brethren'.
Gougenot des Mousseaux used information about the Talmud supplied by Drach, as well as his own encyclopedic knowledge of devil-lore to weave a tale of organized Jewish treachery.
He attributed such diabolical traits as deceit, pride, cunning, and wickedness to Jews, noting that they also shared Satan’s propensity to roam earth’s ends for the purpose of sowing discord.
Just as Beelzebub, Baphomet, and Belial instructed their agents to circulate the untruth that devils did not exist, Jews contradicted all rumors that they were involved in a conspiracy for world domination.
Gougenot, who wrote at the time of Pasteur’s discoveries, might have been the first pundit to compare Jews to invisible microbes that subtly “infected” western civilization with the diseases of secularization and socialism.
His writings strongly influenced the next generation of French anti-Semites, including Edouard Drumont, a leading anti-Dreyfusard, and Fascist ideologist Charles Maurras.
Eckart lapped up the writings of Gougenot des Mousseaux, paying special heed to his prophecy that Jews would create much mischief in Germany, then suffer a devastating payback in return.
During the early 1920’s Eckart persuaded Alfred Rosenberg to translate Gougenot’s book into German under the title, 'The Eternal Jew'.
During his Berlin period Eckart decided that his career setbacks were not due to personal shortcomings, but the pernicious influence of Jewish-controlled media.
According to Eckart, Jews had cornered the German literature market.
They owned thirteen of Berlin’s twenty-one daily newspapers, and several book publishing companies.
The publishing houses of Rudolf Mosse and Leopold Ullstein determined who would succeed and who wouldn’t.
They had what poet Gottfried Benn called the Jewish merchant’s “absolute … instinct for quality.
Mosse had acquired four papers in Berlin alone: 'The Berlin Daily News', 'The Morning Times', 'The People’s Times', and 'Business Daily News'.
Ullstein presided over the 'Evening Post', 'Illustrated Times', 'New Berlin Daily News', and 'Berlin Midday Times'.
According to Eckart, Mosse and Ullstein promoted scribblers churning out drivel, while snubbing genuine German artists.
He asserted that over half of Berlin’s twentyone newspapers were Jewish-owned, as well as all three of the city’s satire magazines.
He deeply resented Jewish editors such as Theodor Wolff of the 'Berliner Tageblatt', Georg Bernhard of the 'Vossiche Zeitung', and Bernhard Guttmann of the 'Frankfurter Zeitung', who exerted real power.
To him these men represented “the antithesis of authentic German life.”
Ullstein Verlag did wield enormous influence, which could make or break authors.
Ullstein’s monopolizing of outlets…made many writers profoundly uneasy, and produced …an unhealthy, eventually lethal, division between those who belonged and those who did not. For a writer without private income, the favor of Ullstein meant luxury, its indifference or disfavor, near-starvation.
Under this system nationalistic writers faced obscurity and failure.
Dietrich Eckart’s völkisch pieces struck big city editors as provincial and reactionary.
Modern readers wanted fresh, cosmopolitan material.
They were neither interested in Teutonic chauvinism, nor romantic treatments of German history.
Thus, Eckart felt the necessity for “a counter-press and counter-culture” to present his views.
In coming years he would bypass Germany’s publishing establishment with vanity press ventures such as 'Herold Verlag' and 'Hoheneichen Verlag'.
Eckart settled in Berlin because he perceived it as the center of German civilization, however, by 1905 the impersonal capital had dashed his hopes. 
The city contained the most advanced form of what Eckart viewed as … disruptive forces of chaos: finance capitalism and socialism, the anonymity and lack of community of the big city, mass communication and cultural pluralism. It was a magnet for German Jewry, which he considered the embodiment of these phenomena.”
Dietrich Eckart had strong likes and dislikes.
He loved Wagnerian opera, völkisch drama, comrades-in-arms, coffee, tobacco, Bavarian beers, and Rhenish wines, but hated lawyers, Jews, pacifists, and unsympathetic literary critics. 
As a Bohemian in Berlin, Eckart built up the reputation as a “metaphysical poet,” concerned with “soul’s involvement and detachment from the world.”
In an effort to understand “that Genius higher than human,” he perused Theosophical works. His interest in occultism brought him into contact with Franz Hartmann, Hugo Vollrath, and Rudolf Steiner.
Eckart attended lectures at the Theosophical Society, and read the 1903 German translation of Madame Blavatsky’s 'Die Geheimlehre' - Secret Doctrine.
Adolf Josef Lanz von Liebenfals, Viennese author of the seminal  völkisch work 'Theozoologie' (1904), and Eckart exchanged letters in 1905.
When Ralph Engelman went through Eckart’s papers in 1969 he found an address book containing the names and calling-cards of "noblemen, diplomats, professors and officers,” as well as scores of “painters, sculptors, architects, actors, …singers…”
Bohemian poet Eckart socialized with people of all classes, from laborers to aristocrats. 
Over the years his gregariousness led him to join several organizations: the 'Onoldia Corps' 'Erlangen Fraternity', 'Fichte Bund', 'Berlin Press Club', 'List Society', 'Hammer Union', 'Theosophical Society', 'Theater Guild', 'The Wagner Society' and of course the 'Thule Gesellschaft.'
Eckart’s first published play 'Der Kleine Zacharias' (1903) juxtaposed a genuine artist with a prosperous sell-out who pandered to the public’s vulgarity.
Most of Eckart’s dramas were based on the premise of idealists being victimized by connivers. Though only performed briefly in Luneburg, 'Der Kleine Zacharias' attracted a small cult following.

Georg von Hülsen-Haeseler 
In 1904 Eckart met Georg Graf von Huelsen-Haeseler, superintendent of the The Royal State Theater, and nephew of military chief of staff, General Dietrich von Huelsen-Haesler.
Between 1905 and 1918 he sent over a hundred letters to this patron.
Huelsen-Haeseler agreed to produce 'Familienvater', a melodrama about idealistic reporter Heiderich, who works for a metropolitan daily owned by a villainous converted Jew named Heinze.
When Heinze fires Timroth, a paterfamilias with eight children, Heiderich promises to support his brood by producing a play exposing the evils of modern journalism.
Alarmed when audiences cheered themselves hoarse at sold-out performances, Heinze utilized his clout with corrupt politicians to close down the production for hyping anarchy.
In despair, Heiderich commits suicide.
Familienvater had runs in Regensburg, Hanover, Munich, Neumarkt, Graz, Vienna, and other cities, but barely broke even.
Eckart suspected that Berlin’s “Jewish cabal” scotched it because of his Pan German and pro-Wagner sympathies.
Through most of 1905 Eckart worked as an editor for the 'Deutscher Blatt' newspaper.
He exulted when Huelsen-Haeseler agreed to stage 'The Frog King' (written in 1898.)
Albert Reich remembered his friend triumphantly passing around the telegram of acceptance in a bar.
Since the Royal Theater almost never produced new works, Eckart had scored a coup.
Based loosely on the Grimm fairy tale, 'Der Froschkoenig' portrayed the life of a swindler who preyed upon upper middle-class Germans.
When Gerda, the pretty daughter of a wealthy businessman attempted to convert him from his life of crime, he refused.
In such a fallen world one must be a blackguard to succeed.
Much of the dialogue reflected Schopenhauer’s fatalism.
The Frog Prince informed Gerda that man is his own maker, his own creation. However a man is, so he himself willed, even before he was. … How can we feel guilty about the ‘bad’ in us ? Nothing we do produces any repentance, so therefore we have none. As we are, so we must act, according to our inborn unalterable character … but because we are this way and have no ‘better’ character-- … for that we are responsible, and … must someday pay !
Unfortunately, this existential amphibian from fairyland failed to enchant theatergoers.
Euphoric during November rehearsals with director Max Staegemans, Eckart was crushed when the play closed after four performances.
In a letter to his teenage friend Xaver Steinbach, Eckart wrote that Huelsen-Haeseler told him “the public and the press,” were responsible for the 'Frog King' debacle.
Meanwhile, he lashed out at Berlin’s philistine public, the “Jewish conspiracy” against him, and lead actor Adalbert Mattkowsky’s lackluster performance.
According to the disgruntled playwright, all critics who panned his masterpiece were lackeys of Berlin’s “Jewish theater monopoly.”
Still smarting from the 'Frog King' disaster, Eckart wrote very little in 1906.
His debts mounted because he accepted conditional advances on plays that earned nothing. Nevertheless, Huelsen-Haeseler treated him kindly, sending hundreds of marks over the next few years, and forgiving advance-refunds owed back to The Royal Theater.
Between 1906 and 1910 Eckart led a threadbare existence, surviving by freelance writing, pawnshop barter, hand-outs from friends, and credit extended by the owner of the 'Alt Bayern' (Old Bavaria) pub on Potsdammerstrasse, where he was a regular.
Artist Albert Reich grew up with Eckart in Neumarkt, and reconnected with him in the Steglitz section of southwestern Berlin.

According to him, he occupied various tenements during his “Hunger Years.
The many different return addresses on Eckart’s correspondence with Geog Graf von Huelsen-Haeseler indicated frequent changes of residence between 1905 and 1910.
Then, instead of confecting new plays from scratch Eckart injected 'Peer Gynt', 'Henry Hohenstaufen', and 'Lorenzaccio' with völkisch notions, then livened them up with his aphoristic style.

Later he assumed the editorship of the Berlin 'Deutscher Blatt' (German Journal) paper and his income enabled him to found his own publishing house, the Hoheneichen Verlag, and it would years later publish Rosenberg's 'Mythus des 20. Jahrhunderts' (Myth of the Twentieth Century) and other National Socialist  works.

The year 1912 saw his biggest success.
It was then that he published his translation of Henrik Ibsen's (see right) 'Peer Gynt' from the original Norwegian.

Peer Gynt is a five-act play in verse by the Norwegian dramatist Henrik Ibsen. Written in the Dano-Norwegian language, it is the most widely performed Norwegian play. According to Klaus Van Den Berg, the "cinematic script blends poetry with social satire and realistic scenes with surreal ones". Peer Gynt has also been described as the story of a life based on procrastination and avoidance. The play is very loosely based on a Norwegian fairy tale believed by Ibsen to be rooted in fact

At first Ibsen's son refused to allow Eckart to produce the play on the German stage and withheld copyright permission.
Kaiser Wilhelm II had read the new translation, and as the "protector of the German stage," personally intervened.
The play opened at the Koniglichen Schauspielen Theater in Berlin in 1914, and the Kaiser saw it twice in as many evenings. In fact, running 183 performances in four years, it was the second most popular play ever presented in the theater. 
Eckart believed that the Christian Morgenstern translation on the market was unfaithful to Ibsen's intentions.
The poet transformed Peer from a lowly farmer into a heroic fighter for the Germanic Weltanschauung - (philosophy of life).

Kaiser Wilhelm
This faustian change was so brilliant it met with instant acclaim.
After years of near despair and starvation, Eckart was finally a financial success.
His interest in Peer Gynt was more than artistic, though.
He saw in Ibsen's hero his own personality.
Eckart was a successful playwright, as his 1912 adaptation of Henrik Ibsen's  'Peer Gynt' was one of the best attended productions of the age, with more than 600 performances in Berlin alone.
Kaiser Wilhelm subsequently asked Eckart to write a play in honor of the planned marriage of his daughter to the Duke of Braunschweig.
The Hohenstaufen Kaiser Heinrich the Sixth was chosen as his subject, and he completed the play in the allotted time but after just six performances, it was banned.
World War I was raging, and in the play the British king had pledged an oath of allegiance to Germany.
Since this was an embarrassing historical fact in light of Germany's war with England, Chancellor Bethmann-Hollweg suspended its production.

At this time Eckart developed an ideology of a "genius superman", based on writings by the Völkisch author Jörg Lanz von Liebenfels (see right); he saw himself following the tradition of Heinrich Heine, Arthur Schopenhauer (see left) and Angelus Silesius.
He also became fascinated by the Buddhist doctrine of Maya (illusion).
Eckart loved and strongly identified with the fictional character 'Peer Gynt', but never had much sympathy for the scientific method.
From 1907 he lived with his brother Wilhelm in the Döberitz mansion colony west of the Berlin city limits.
In 1913 he married Rosa Marx, an affluent widow from Bad Blankenburg, and returned to Munich.
Later he traveled in the spring of 1915 to Bad Blakenburg.
Here his brother-in-law, Dr. Paul Wiedeburg, operated a sanatorium.
Eckart found the place serene and perfect for his work.
He not only found peace of mind, but also a willing audience for his plays.
Patients and guests acted out scenes while he directed and rewrote. He busied himself in these experiments and remained at the sanatorium for a year.
His last play, 'Lorenzaccio', perhaps his finest effort, was completed in 1918.
The tragedy was never performed during his lifetime.
It was first staged in the Leipzig Stadttheater on October 7, 1933, ten years after his death.
Dierich Eckart was a "character" in the fullest sense of the word.
He was a "roughhewn, with his thick round head, his partiality for good wine and talk."
He would sit for hours with his friends in sidewalk cafes and discuss the issues of the day.
He dominated conversations.
A well read man, he was direct in his manner of speaking, and his weakness for the Bavarian dialect, but was always able to throw out a quote, or an eloquent response.
Never caught without an answer, he was a skilled debater, and won over many converts to his nationalistic views.
Money, as would be wont of someone who took Peer Gynt to heart, never meant much to Eckart. If he had it, he would spend it.
Rosenberg writes that Eckart could simply not say "no" to a friend, and would give up his last cent even if it meant he would go without.
He spent a small fortune on beer and wine, and entertaining drinking chums.
His years in Berlin, much like Hitler's years in Vienna, brought him into contact with many Jews. He slowly evolved into an anti-Semite.
Well educated and a skillful orator, he became known as a so-called 'Judenspezialist'.

He was one of the first members of the Fichte Bund, founded in 1914; and he contributed to Theodor Fritsch's anti-jewish paper, 'Der Hammer'.

Theodor Fritsch (28 October 1852, in Wiedemar – 8 September 1933, in Markkleeberg), originally Emil Theodor Fritsche, was a German publisher and pundit.
Curved Thule Swastika
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His anti-semitic writings did much to influence popular German opinion against Jews in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
His writings also appeared under the pen names Thomas Frey, Fritz Thor, and Ferdinand Roderich-Stoltheim. Fritsch founded the Reichshammerbund (Reich's Hammer League) in 1912, one of the first political groups to adopt the swastika. 
He also founded the secret 'Germanenorden' in that year. Members of these groups formed the 'Thule Society' in 1918, which eventually sponsored the creation of the NSDAP. The Reichhammerbund was eventually folded into the Deutschvölkischer Schutz und Trutzbund, on whose advisory board Fritsch sat. He later became a member of the German Völkisch Freedom Party. In the general election of May, 1924, Fritsch was elected to serve as a member of the National Socialist Freedom Movement, a party formed in alliance with the Völkisch Freedom Party by the NSDAP as a legal means to election after the National Socialists had been banned in the aftermath of the Munich Putsch.

He co-founded a short-lived paper titled 'Unser Vaterland' (Our Fatherland) in 1915 after becoming convinced that there was a 'jewish attempt at world mastery.'

Arthur Schopenhauer

Schopenhauer was Eckart's favorite philosopher, and he took many of his ideas, if not his very weltanschauung, from 'Die Welt als Wille und Vorstellung' - (The World As Will and Idea) (see left).

He explained he saw the world in terms of 'good' and 'evil,' with the German and Jew representing opposites.
This idea was a common thread which ran through the völkisch movement, but with erudite quotes from Schopenhauer and others Eckart was a prime mover of this belief.

The völkisch movement (original name: völkische Bewegung) is the German interpretation of the populist movement, with a romantic focus on folklore and the "organic". The term völkisch, meaning "ethnic", derives from the German word Volk (cognate with the English "folk"), corresponding to "people", with connotations in German of "people-powered",  and "folkloric". The word also has "overtones of 'nation', 'race' and 'tribe'…" The völkisch "movement" was not a unified movement but "a group of beliefs, fears and hopes that found expression in various movements and were often articulated in an emotional tone," The movement even affected people such as Carl Gustav Jung. The völkisch movement was "arguably the largest group" in the Conservative Revolutionary movement in Germany, however, like "conservative-revolutionary" or "fascist", völkisch is a complex term ("schillernder Begriff"). In a narrow definition it can be used to designate only groups that consider human beings essentially preformed by blood, i.e. by inherited characteristics.

In short, he saw two impulses inherent in man, 'world-affirmation' and 'world-denial.'

World-affirmation meant a complete surrender or submission to one's baser, all-too-human instincts; whether it be sensual, decadent, or materialistic.
World-denial was its counterweight, the constant striving for something more than earthly desires, the faustian wanderlust which could not be explained, only felt.
Eckart thought man must have an occasional respite from his inner strivings, but that a firm balance must be kept between the two extremes.
One can trace the origin of Eckart's pet theme 'the jewish spirit within and without us' ('in und außer uns ') to this viewpoint.
Rather than attack the Jew on a religious or biological basis as most anti-semites before him, Eckart placed importance on the spiritual aspects.
He felt every man had some 'jewishness' within him, and that one's first priority was to repress and purge this spirit.
For perhaps the first time blame was laid on everyone's foibles instead of on 'the Jew' alone. This was a revolutionary if not refreshing approach to the 'problem,' and Eckart was articulate enough to advance it successfully.
It can be found in Point 24 of the NSDAP Official Program.
With the establishment of the Bolshevik dictatorship in Russia, Eckart all but dropped his literary efforts in favor of anti-marxist propaganda.

In November of 1918 the World War was lost by Germany and in Munich the "Red Jewish Republic" of Kurt Eisner (see right) arose.

Ironically, Munich was a main destination and refugee center for White Russians fleeing Russia.
The city was a hotbed of pro and anti communist agitation.
Among the mass of refugees was a young Balt, Alfred Rosenberg (see left).
On December 7, 1918, Eckart and Rosenberg founded their nationalistic and anti-semitic propaganda sheet entitled 'Auf Gut Deutsch', (In Plain German).
Planned as a weekly, it was sixteen pages in length and cost fifty Pfennigs.
Double issues of 32 pages were sometimes printed, and cost one mark.
Eckart put his own finances into the printing and distributed it personally.
He printed his Lorenzaccio drama and numbered it "Issues 15-29."
Even multiple-numbering could not keep the magazine on a regular delivery basis, so Eckart felt obligated to send his subscribers other pamphlets and literature as compensation.

Thule's 'Muchener Beobachter', Theodor Fritsche's 'Hammer' (see left and right), 'Sturm' from Hannover, and a cheap edition of Artur Dinter's 'The Sin Against Blood' were among those anti-semitic works mailed.

Eckart wasted no time in attacking his favorite targets.
In the first issue of 'Auf Gut Deutsch' he likened international finance to "der Grosse Krumme." "Der Grosse Krumme," or the Great Boyg, was the ubiquitous clammy mass which almost trapped Peer Gynt in the Valley of the Trolls forever.
Eckart thought the work "Krumme" particularly well suited for the analogy, as in German it has the double meaning of 'hunchback' - a disfigurement he attributed to a certain breed of banker.
In April of 1919 Eckart and his circle of comrades -- by this time including such NS notables as Julius Streicher, Rudolf Hess, Gottfried Feder, Ernst Roehm and Anton Drexler -- agitated against the Eisner "Bavarian Peoples' Republic" by taking to the streets.

Eckart had heard of the Russian Revolution first-hand from Rosenberg, (see left) had witnessed the Eisner dictatorship in Munich, and saw in the terror of Bela Kuhn's Hungary proof positive that the Jews were conspiring against the world.

On April 6th he printed one hundred thousand flyers headed "To All Professions" in which he called for united action against the Eisner regime.
It took courage to distribute the flyer in public as the Red guards were prone towards violence and summary shootings.
He, Rosenberg and others drove through the streets of Munich, throwing the sheet from their speeding cars.
Eckart joined the First Wurttemburg Regiment of the Freikorps under General Haas, and helped free Thule Society prisoners from the Stadelheim city prison.
He was arrested for his involvement, but an eloquent speech gained him freedom.
His experiences during this time convinced him that the middle class had failed miserably, and that only a broad-based appeal to the workers could rectify the situation.
Through folkish circles Eckart met Ulrich Fleischhauer, a well-known racist.
Fleischhauer aided Eckart in the distribution of the magazine and played a key role in its success.

He teamed with Alfred Rosenberg and published 'The Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion' in German.

On August 14, 1919 Eckart attended an early meeting of Anton Drexler's German Workers' Party (DAP).

He traveled to Nurnberg with Gottfried Feder (see right) and spoke on the 'breaking of interest slavery.' Success here led to the founding of Streicher's German Socialist Party (DSP) which' later merged with Hitler's movement.
He also joined the 'Schutz und Trutz Bund' -  (German Racist League for Defense and Attack) which claimed a quarter million men by October.
Its founder was Willibald von Zezschwitz, one of the Nazi Party's first lawyers.
Eckart was convinced that the nation only lacked a suitable leader and often spoke of the "coming Leader."
In late 1919, probably December, the poet met young Adolf Hitler.
Eckart quickly realized Hitler's potential as a speaker and leader, and proclaimed:
"There is the coming man of Germany of whom the world will someday speak!"
This prophetic remark was made at a time when Hitler was unknown and not taken seriously by anyone outside of his inner circle of supporters.
Through Eckart Hitler met not only local Bavarian supporters, but important figures such as Ludendorff, Kapp, Roehm, Hess, Rosenberg, Ritter von Epp, not to mention the Wagner family and Houston Stewart Chamberlain.
These introductions proved to be pivotal in Hitler's ultimate rise to power.
General Wolfgang Kapp (see right) staged his ill-fated Putsch in Berlin on March 13, 1920.
Hitler and Eckart flew to the city to witness the event.
Their pilot was Ritter von Greim, who took charge of the Luftwaffe in 1945 after Hermann Goring's dismissal.
When the revolt was crushed, Hitler and his mentor left the city disillusioned, but Hitler was thereafter the strongest national leader.
During the months that followed, 'Auf Gut Deutsch' came out with three special issues devoted entirely to the "Jewish problem."
In February 1920 over one hundred thousand copies of 'In the New Germany' were distributed. Leading Marxist and Jewish figures in government were attacked.

Eugene Levine (see right), a top Red Jewish leader, personally led an assault on the paper's office but a tip from sympathetic police saved it from destruction.

In March another issue was devoted to Bela Kuhn's (see left) bloody rebellion in the neighboring state of Hungary, entitled 'Out of Hungary's Days of Terror'.
In July an issue, 'Austria Under Judas' Star' appeared.
Such provocative issues made Eckart a well-known figure around Bavaria and indeed all of Germany.
He was arrested and his papers confiscated on numerous occasions.

His controversial writing aroused much bitter protest in Jewish communities.

On December 20, 1920, the National Socialist German Workers' Party purchased its first newspaper from the Thule Society.
It was renamed the 'Volkischer Beobachter'.
Eckart was instrumental in helping obtain the heavy financing required.
He was apparently able to convince Freikorp General Franz Ritter von Epp (see right) to contribute sixty thousand marks.
The poet also contributed from his 'Peer Gynt' royalties.
His pivotal role in this momentous step for the NSDAPy was acknowledged by Hitler himself.

At this time Eckart wrote the words to his song 'Deutschland Erwache !' (Germany Awake), which later became a party byword.

General Hans von Seeckt (see right) wrote in his memoirs that "Eckart's word has become a slogan to us."
Eckart's political life had kept him away from home so much that in March of 1921 his wife Rose had been granted a divorce.
After eight years of controversy surrounding her husband's views and actions, she had had enough.
After the 'summer crisis' had been settled, Eckart's newfound freedom took him south to the small mountain village of Berchtesgaden, near Salzburg, where he escaped the pressures of city living and rested.
It was there that he was to write his famous 'Bolshevism from Moses to Lenin' and there that he was to die.


Eckart was a key member of the Thule Gesellschaft (see left), founded by Sebottendorff, - a secretive group of occultists that believed in the coming of a “German Messiah” (Stark von Obern - the strong one from above) who would redeem Germany after its defeat in World War I.
Eckart expressed his anticipation in a poem he wrote months before he met Hitler for the first time.
In the poem, Eckart refers to ‘the Great One’, ‘the Nameless One’, ‘Whom all can sense but no one saw’.

When Eckart met Hitler, he was convinced that he had encountered the prophesied redeemer (Erlöser - which is redolent of Wagner's Parsifal - see right).

The while remaining an essentially occult group, the Thule Gesellschaft became increasingly political, and in 1918 established a political party, the Deutsche Arbeiterpartei DAP - (German Workers' Party)
The DAP was founded in Munich in the hotel "Fürstenfelder Hof" on January 5, 1919 by Anton Drexler, a member of the occultist Thule Gesellschaft.
It developed out of the "Freien Arbeiterausschuss für einen guten Frieden" (Free Workers' Committee for a good Peace) which Drexler had also founded and led.
© Copyright Peter Crawford 2013
Its first members were mostly colleagues of Drexler's from the Munich rail depot.
Drexler was encouraged to found the DAP (see left) by his mentor, Dr. Paul Tafel, a leader of the Alldeutscher Verband (Pan-Germanist Union), a director of the Maschinenfabrik Augsburg-Nürnberg, also a member of the Thule Gesellschaft, and his wish was for a party which was both in touch with the masses and nationalist, unlike the middle class parties.
The initial membership was about forty people.
On March 24, 1919, Karl Harrer (a sports journalist and member of the Thule Society) joined the DAP to increase the influence of the Thule Society over the DAP's activities, and the party name was changed to the "Political Workers' Circle".
The membership was as scarce as the original DAP's and the meetings were reduced to the local beer houses.
This party was joined in 1919 by Adolf Hitler (see right).
Adolf Hitler, then a corporal in the German army, was ordered to spy on the DAP on September 12, 1919 during one of its meetings at the Sterneckerbräu, a beer hall in the center of the city.
While there, he got into a violent argument with one guest.
Following this incident, Anton Drexler was impressed with Hitler's oratory skills and invited him to join the party.
After some thinking, Hitler left the army and accepted the invitation, joining in late September.
At the time when Hitler joined the party there were no membership numbers or cards.

It was on January 1920 when a numeration was issued for the first time: listed in alphabetical order, Hitler received the number 555.
In reality he had been the 55th member, but the counting started at the number 501 in order to make the party appear larger.
Also, his claim that he was party member number 7, which would make him one of the founding members, is refuted, however, in his work 'Mein Kampf', Hitler claims that he received a membership card with the number 7.
After giving his first speech for the Party on October 16 in the Hofbräukeller, Hitler quickly rose up to become a leading figure in the DAP.
The small number of party members were quickly won over to Hitler's political beliefs.
In an attempt to make the party more broadly appealing to larger segments of the population, the DAP was renamed on February 24, 1920 to the Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei NSDAP - (National Socialist German Workers' Party) or Nazi Party.
The name was borrowed from a different Austrian party active at the time (Deutsche Nationalsozialistische Arbeiterpartei, German National Socialist Workers' Party), although Hitler earlier suggested the party to be renamed the "Social Revolutionary Party"; it was Rudolf Jung who persuaded Hitler to follow the NSDAP naming.

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© Copyright Peter Crawford 2013
The emblem of the new party was the black,straight-armed clockwise swastika (see right), on a white circle against a red ground - unlike the DAP, which used the curved armed,static swastika (see left), taken from the Thule Gesellschaft emblem.
Eckart was involved in founding the Deutsche Arbeiterpartei (German Workers' Party) together with Gottfried Feder and Anton Drexler (see right) in 1919, later renamed the Nationalsozialistische deutsche Arbeiterpartei (National Socialist German Workers' Party, NSDAP) (see badge left); he was the original publisher of the party newspaper, the 'Völkischer Beobachter' (see above left), and also wrote the lyrics of Deutschland erwache ("Germany awake"), which became an anthem of the Nazi Party.

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Eckart met Adolf Hitler during a speech he gave before party members in 1919.
Eckart exerted considerable influence on Hitler in the following years and is strongly believed to have helped establish the theories and beliefs of the Nazi party.
Few other people had as much influence on Hitler in his lifetime.
It was Eckart who introduced Alfred Rosenberg to Adolf Hitler.
Between 1920 and 1923, Eckart and Rosenberg labored tirelessly in the service of Hitler and the party.

© Copyright Peter Crawford 2013
click below for the full English text of Alfred Rosenberg's

Through Rosenberg, Hitler was introduced to the writings of Houston Stewart Chamberlain, who had inspired Rosenberg.
Rosenberg edited the 'Münchener Beobachter', a party newspaper, originally owned by the Thule Society.
In the pages of the 'Münchener Beobachter', Rosenberg published the 'Protocols of the Elders of Zion' (see right).
To raise funds for the party's newspaper, Eckart introduced Hitler into the influential circles that would eventually fund the Nazi party. While staying in the house of a wealthy manufacturer in Berlin, Hitler was given instruction in public speaking by a teacher of drama.

On 9 November 1923, Eckart was involved in the Nazi party's failed Beer Hall Putsch; he was arrested and placed in Landsberg Prison along with Hitler and other party officials, but was released shortly thereafter due to illness.

Dietrich Eckart died of a heart attack in Berchtesgaden on 26 December 1923 (see Dietrich Eckart Haus - right). 
However, shortly before his death he made a prophetic statement to the inner circle of the Thule Gesellschaft:

"Hitler will dance, but it is I who have called the tune !
I have initiated him into the 'Secret Doctrine', opened his centres of vision (1) and given him the means to communicate with the Powers. Do not mourn for me: I shall have influenced History more than any other German".

  1. Eckart's use of the phrase 'Die Geheime Lehre' (Secret Doctrine) appears, on the face of it, to be a reference to Madame Blavatsky's Theosophical teaching; 'The Secret Doctrine' being the title of her last book published in 1891; particularly with regards to the Root Races, the Aryans and the existence of 'hidden supermen'.
    Eckart may, however, be referring, in addition, to some esoteric doctrine of his own.
    © Copyright Peter Crawford 2013
    The 'centre of vision' are the the Sacred Chakras, which are a central part of esoteric philosophy in both the Oriental and Oriental systems of magic. In Occidental magic, which has its origins in Gnosticism and the Kabala, the Chakras are associated with the Planetary Spheres and the Kabalistic Tree of Life. There are seven Chakras in the human body associated with various organs.
    The lowest Chakra is associated with the rectum, the second with the genitals, the third with the abdomen, the fourth with the heart, the fifth with the thyroid, the sixth with the pineal gland and the last Chakra with the crown. Each Chakra 'vibrates' at its own rate and acts as a 'gate' to the 'Kundalini Power' which originates in the ano-genital area and, when released, can rise through the Chakras, being modified by each one; eventually reaching the Crown Chakra to produce a spiritual 'awakening'. There are various ways of causing such an awakening of power; the easiest being a direct stimulation of the Kundalini through erotic or sado-erotic practices. Such stimulation,rather than the slower and considerably more difficult meditatory path, often results in a lack of control of the powers so obtained.

Johann Dietrich Eckart was buried in Berchtesgaden's old cemetery, not far from the eventual graves of Nazi party official Hans Lammers and his wife and daughter.
Hitler dedicated the second volume of 'Mein Kampf' to Eckart, and also named the Waldbühne arena near the Olympic Stadium in Berlin as the "Dietrich-Eckart-Bühne" (see right)  when it was opened for the 1936 Summer Olympics.
The 5th Standarte (regiment) of the SS-Totenkopfverbände was given the honour-title 'Dietrich Eckart'.

In 1925, Eckart's unfinished essay 'Der Bolschewismus von Moses bis Lenin: Zwiegespräch zwischen Hitler und mir' ("Bolshevism from Moses to Lenin: Dialogues Between Hitler and Me") was published posthumously.

Hitler, however, was unable to let go of his mentor, and kept and displayed Dietrich Eckart's death mask (see left) at his country residence, the Berghof (see right).
There Hitler would lock himself away in the small room where the death mask lay in a shrine, but as to what he did nobody knows.
Interestingly, between the dates on the plaque is the word 'Thule', and this clearly demonstrates Ekhart's association with the secret society.



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The final dedication from 'Mein Kampf'

'I have dedicated the first volume of this book to our eighteen fallen heroes...... Together with those, and as one of the best of all, I should like to mention the name of a man who devoted his life to reawakening his and our people, through his writing and his ideas and finally through positive action.
                                                             I mean: 
© Copyright Peter Crawford 2013

(23 March 1868 – 26 December 1923)

Why was Eckart ‘one of the best', what were his writings, thoughts and deeds, and why was Hitler so impressed by him?
According to Konrad Heiden (1), 'Eckart undertook the spiritual formation of Adolf Hitler', and it is useful to investigate this aspect of Eckart's career.

(1) Konrad Heiden (7 August 1901 – 18 June 1966) was an influential journalist and historian of the Weimar Republic and Nazi eras, most noted for the first influential biographies of German dictator Adolf Hitler. Often, he wrote under the pseudonym "Klaus Bredow."Heiden was born in Munich, Germany, on 7 August 1901, and graduated from the University of Munich in 1923.
Heiden was one of the first critical observers of the rise of National Socialism in Germany after he attended a party's meeting in 1920. He worked for the Frankfurter Zeitung and the Vossischen Zeitung, but became a freelancer in 1932.
A year later, he went into exile; first to Saarland, then to Switzerland, then to France, and finally to the United States.

Dietrich Eckart, as we have seen, was an admirer of Schopenauer and Nietzsche, but also a dedicated occultist.
Eckart appears to have travelled widely in his youth, visiting Spain, North Africa and Italy, and it was during these travels that he first became interested in the occult.
Later he adopted a Bohemian life-style, and pursued a career as a dramatist, poet and journalist, at first in Berlin, and after the war, in Munich.

During the war (1914-1918) served in the German Army, as an officer and, like Hitler, he was gassed, towards the end of hostilities.
For the rest of his life he suffered from respiratory problems which were eventually responsible for his premature death.
The products of his pen were of varying quality, ranging from a ver popular, if heavily romanticised trahslation of Ibsen's 'Peer Gynt' to academic essays on Norse mythology, to mediocre poetry, and included the witty but scurrilous antisemitic news-sheet, 'Auf gut deutsch'.
Eckart also drank heavily and took drugs, which included a favourite of many bohemians at that time, the psychedelic peyote, which the pharmacologist Ludwig Lewin had studied as early as 1886, and which Aleister Crowley (see right) claimed to have popularised in Europe.
Eckart believed that he was destined to prepare the way for a new leader of the German people, and he spoke regularly of this belief to his friends in the Thule Group.

Eckart knew Sebottendorff very well, and the other Thulists looked up to him as an adept.
Eckart met Hitler at some time during 1919 and the two men with so many interests in common developed an instantaneous rapport.If Hitler had been unaware of the Thule Group and its activities prior to joining the German Workers', Party, he soon learned, and Eckart said of him to the Thulists in suitably biblical and messianic terms: ‘Here is the one for whom I was but the prophet and forerunner.'
But what could an occultist and a magical order impart to Adolf Hitler?
We shall look at the question by considering what magic is and what magical fraternities teach.
Dion Fortune (2 see right), a twentieth-century magician, has defined magic as ‘the science and art of causing changes in consciousness to occur in conformity with the will'.

(2) Violet Mary Firth Evans (6 December 1890[1] – 8 January 1946), better known as Dion Fortune, was a British occultist and author.
Her pseudonym was inspired by her family motto "Deo, non fortuna" (Latin for "by God, not fate").
She was born in Bryn-y-Bia in Llandudno, Wales, and grew up in a household where Christian Science was rigorously practised.
She reported visions of Atlantis at age four and the developing of psychic abilities during her twentieth year, at which time she suffered a nervous breakdown; after her recovery she found herself drawn to the occult.
She joined the Theosophical Society and attended courses in psychology and psychoanalysis at the University of London, and became a lay psychotherapist at the Medico-Psychological Clinic in Brunswick Square.
Her first magical mentor was the Irish occultist and Freemason Theodore Moriarty.
In 1919 she was initiated into the London Temple of the Alpha et Omega before transferring to theStella Matutina Order.

Francis King (3 see left) has expanded on this:
The next great principle of Western magic is the belief that the properly trained human will is, quite literally, capable of anything ... The motivating power, then, in all magical operations, is the trained will of the magician. All the adjuncts of ceremonial magic – lights, colours, circles, triangles, perfumes – are merely aids to concentrating the will of the magician into a blazing stream of pure energy."

(3)  Francis Henry King, CBE (4 March 1923 – 3 July 2011)was a British novelist, poet and short story writer and occultist.
He was born in Adelboden, Switzerland, brought up in India and educated at Shrewsbury School and Balliol College, Oxford.

During World War II he was a conscientious objector, and left Oxford to work on the land.
After completing his degree in 1949 he worked for the British Council; he was posted around Europe, and then in Kyoto.
He resigned to write full time in 1964.
He was a past winner of the W. Somerset Maugham Prize for his novel 'The Dividing Stream' (1951) and also won the Katherine Mansfield Short Story Prize. His 1956 book 'The Firewalkers' was published pseudonymously under the name Frank Cauldwell.
A President Emeritus of International PEN and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature, he was appointed an Officer (OBE) of the Order of the British Empire in 1979 and a Commander of the Order (CBE) in 1985.

click below for a fascinating insight into the occult source of Hitler's power
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Whether the magic is white or black depends not on whether sex or drugs are employed as adjuncts, but on how this energy is used. Its proper use is to induce a state of being called variously super-consciousness, the knowledge and conversation of the holy guardian angel, enlightenment, or liberation: black magic consists of using this energy for material gain, or, above all, for the pursuit of power.
By this definition, the Thule Group pursued black magic.
Pauwels and Bergier (4) have neatly expressed the beliefs of the Thulists:
'Thule was supposed to be an island that disappeared somewhere in the extreme North.
Off Greenland? or Labrador?

Like Atlantis, Thule (see left) was thought to have been the magic centre of a vanished civilisation Eckart and his friends believed that not all the secrets of Thule had perished.
Beings intermediate between Man and other intelligent Beings from Beyond, would place at the disposal of the Initiates a reservoir of forces which could be drawn upon to enable Germany to dominate the world again and be the cradle of the coming race of Supermen which would result from mutations of the human species.
One day her legions would set out to annihilate everything that had stood in the way of the spiritual destiny of the Earth, and their leaders would be men who knew everything, deriving their strength from the very fountainhead of energy and guided by the Great Ones of the Ancient World.
Such were the myths on which the Aryan doctrine of Eckart and Rosenberg was founded and which these "prophets" of a magic form of Socialism had instilled in the mediumistic mind of Hitler.
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click below for more information about

(4)  'The Dawn of Magic' was first published as 'Le Matin des Magiciens'.
Written by Louis Pauwels and Jacques Bergier in 1960, it became a best seller, first in French, then translated into English in 1963 as 'The Dawn of Magic', and later released in the United States. A German edition was published with the title 'Aufbruch ins dritte Jahrtausend' (Departure into the third Millennium).

The Thule Gesellschaft was a serious Magical Order: that is to say that its activities did not consist merely of examining the crankier fringes of mythology, acting out meaningless rituals, and dreaming of world conquest.
It taught its initiates to practise the magic arts and awaken their own potential.
Its teachings included the control of a subtle force, like Lytton's Vril or the Kundalini of the Hindus (see left): the creation of desirable situations through intense and systematic visualisation: and the art of communication with those mysterious Beings - the Unknown Supermen.
It is likely that Hitler learned all these techniques, and realised that the one-pointed concentration of the will, a faculty which he already possessed, could have its power greatly enhanced by the force of heightened emotion.
It appears, however, that it was Eckart who was responsible for the Thulist's attempts to break through the veil of time, in a desperate attempt to discover what the future held in store for them.
They were living in desperate times and saw European, and particularly German civilisation crumbling around them.
After the defeat of the War, they now faced the creeping threat of communism and racial disintegration.
Their dreams of completing the 'great work' seemed to be fading, and they looked to the future for reassurance.
Eckart, in an attempt to divine the future, used an uneducated peasant girl, who was apparently a natural medium.
One evening in 1919 members of the Thule Society met in Munich and held a seance.
Besides Eckart, seated around the table in the darkened room was Sebotendorf and Alfred Rosenberg, among others.
They were hoping to make contact with the Unknown Supermen on the higher planes of existence, namely the spiritual world.
The medium, a ruddy-faced muscular woman, a Russian farmer's wife, had stripped naked and slipped into a trance to allow herself to be taken over by her 'spirit guides'.
What happened next was not what she or anybody at the seance had expected.
Usually, she would speak in her mother tongue, which the majority of participants to the seance did not understand.
Then suddenly, a ghostly apparition appeared.
They all recognised who it was - Prince von Thurn und Taxis, a former member of the group.
On 26th April 1919 Communists broke into the Thule Society offices and arrested its secretary, a young woman Countess Heila von Westarp.
Later that day, Thule members Walter Nauhaus, Prince Gustav von Thurn und Taxis, Baron Teuchert, Walter Deicke, Friedrich Wilhelm von Seydlitz, and Anton Daumelang were also captured and later executed.

One member escaped the purge.
His name was Rudolf Hess.
He had narrowly escaped capture by turning up late for a meeting, and watched helplessly as his friends were taken away.
The voice of the apparition was unmistakable.
Speaking in high German, a language which the Russian medium was completely unfamilar, the disembodied prince declared that a new leader of Germany would claim the Holy Lance and embark on a campaign of world conquest.
No sooner had this been declared than his presence was replaced by another disincarnate spirit, the young Countess Westarp, who announced the imminet arrival of the messiah for whom they had been waiting, who would lead Germany to both economic and spiritual recovery.
With a sharp intake of breath, the naked medium awoke from her trance and the apparition disappeared.
Around her she saw the white faces of those who had attended, some shaking, all speechlesss.
Perhaps it was wishful thinking on their part; regardless Eckart was on the lookout for this 'German messiah'.
The Gesellschaft can be seen as the product of along process of development, beginning with the ancient Gnosticism of the Near East, and passing through many convolutions.
The Thule Gesellschaft, however, seemed to be waiting for someone to transform it and give it power.

That person proved to be Adolf Hitler.

For Eckhart this was merely a confirmation of what he had been told during another seance four years before.
During that seance he received a startling message.
A voice had told him that a German would appear who would lead the Aryan race to final victory.
This voice then said that it would be Eckart's responsibility to nurture what it called the 'Messiah', the Chosen One.
Eckart was now a man with a mission because the German messiah was about to be revealed, and he knew what he would look like.
Eckart knew immediately that Hilter was the man who was destined to save the German people.
Eckart immediately assumed the role foretold in his vision as mentor to the future leader and began to help Hilter to shape his ideology and message, boosting his self-confidence and training him in occult matters and in addition the practical arts of self projection, body language and pursuasive oratory.
And suddenly, under the tutelage of Eckart, the ex-dropout and ex-corporal began to display extraordinary talents.
An occultist would say that magical techniques had aroused his potential; a Jungian psychologist, perhaps, that he had through his practices made the unconscious conscious.

At any rate, Hitler proved that he was an excellent organiser and, guided by Röhm, and Eckart, he was the moving spirit behind a propaganda campaign that took the obscure Party from the beer cellars to large public meetings.
Here, a third talent emerged. Hitler proved to be an orator of genius.
On 16 October 1919, he had addressed his first public meeting.
Wildly acclaimed by his audience, Hitler discovered that he could wield ‘the magic power of the spoken word'.
However this was not a case of instant genius, for Hitler had to work hard at perfecting his technique. 

Dietrich Eckart, had contacts with all the 'rightist' circles, and he introduced Hitler to Munich society as the 'saviour' of the German people.
However, initially all accounts describe Hitler as awkward, fawningly polite, 'noteworthy for his hasty greed when eating and his exaggerated bows'.
Hitler is reported to have made a habit of arriving late and leaving early; loud, ostentatious outbursts against political opponents alternated abruptly with phases of introspective withdrawal.
Obviously still dominated by the feeling of being an outsider, he was continually thwarted in his desire to shine by the fear of social slights, a fear which the numerous women, mostly elderly ladies who took him under their wing with belated maternal eagerness, were unable to soothe. However, gradually, with Eckhart's tutelage, Hitler began to change and it is evident he was being transformed into an orator of considerable persuasive power.
So as if by a miracle, two years after the Great War, Hitler had risen from obscurity, to become as his greatest opponents would concede later, the greatest orator that Germany has ever known

Alan Bullock's (5 - see left) comments are, in the present context, highly significant:
His power to bewitch an audience has been likened to the occult arts of the African
Medicine-man or the Asiatic Shaman; others have compared it to the sensitivity of a medium, and the magnetism of a hypnotist.’
And then there were Hitler's limpid, pale blue eyes....

(5)  Alan Louis Charles Bullock, Baron Bullock (13 December 1914 – 2 February 2004), was a British historian, who wrote an influential biography of Adolf Hitler and many other works.

© Copyright Peter Crawford 2013

The area of Obersalzberg was purchased by the Nazis in the 1920s for their senior leaders to enjoy.
Hitler's mountain residence, the Berghof, was located here.
Berchtesgaden and its environs (Stanggass) were fitted to serve as an outpost of the German Reichskanzlei office (Imperial Chancellery).
Some typical Third Reich buildings in Berchtesgaden include the railway station, that had a reception area for Hitler and his guests, and the post office next to the railway station.
The Berchtesgadener Hof Hotel was a hotel where famous visitors stayed, such as Eva Braun, Erwin Rommel, Joseph Goebbels, and Heinrich Himmler, as well as Neville Chamberlain and David Lloyd George.

Not long after Hitler siezed the leadership of the party and became it's Fuhrer, his mentor, Eckart, introduced him to the lovely village of Berchtesgaden that was nestled in the Bavarian Alps.
Located near the Austrian border and only a two hour train ride south-east of Munich, Berchtesgaden was a small farming, mining and resort community.
Since about 1850 the area had been one of the summer stomping grounds for Germany's royalty and high society.
Since the first world war it had fallen on leaner times.
Under the influence of Eckart, Hitler adapted the custom of spending weekends, holidays, and vacations at the mountain retreat.
Hitler stayed with Eckart in a house, called the Sonnenhauesl, or as Hitler called it, the "Sonnenkopfl," at Lockstein.
About a year after his introduction to Berchtesgaden, Hitler and a friend made a two mile hike up to Obersalzberg.
Dotted with a few small farms and summer guest-houses, the area offered some of the most spectacular scenic views of the German and Austrian Alps.
Hitler described the region as "a countryside of indescribable

He soon began spending most of his free time there and normally took a room at the Pension Moritz (see right).
A short walk below the Moritz was the Gasthof zum Turken (see left) (named after an innkeeper who fought the Turks) where Hitler and his friends enjoyed the "genuine goulash" and often lingered in one of the small public rooms lost in conversation.
It no doubt impressed Hitler to learn that the Moritz and Turken had once been the meeting places of such dignitaries as Prince-Regent Luitpold of Bavaria, the composer Johannes Brahms and even Crown prince Wilhelm of Prussia.
Having taught Hitler the oratory skills to manipulate an audience through the techniques of hand gestures, voice control and timing, Eckhart now presented his prodigy with a place that would overwhelm him with majestic and inspiring grandeur.
Little wonder that Hitler later said that it was here that he had spent his most pleasant times, and conceived his greatest ideas.
And opposite the Eckart's Sonnenhauesl (The Little House of the Sun) was the mighty Untersberg (see right) - the massive mountain that dominates the Obersalzburg.
Interetingly, the Untersburg is no ordinary mountain, and one reason Hitler became intrigued by the mountain is because of re-occuring events, legends and tales of people gone missing, people experiencing missing time, encounters with elves and extraterrestrials and passageways to what Hitler called “the inner earth”.
Often noted by occultists as an “energy spot” or “magnetic geo-node,” many seekers came to the Untersberg to be refreshed by the water and drawn to over 400 caves and tunnels by what is described as a “strong magnetic anomaly.”
The Untersberg has been characterized by the Dalai-Lama as the “sleeping dragon,” the “heart-chakra of the world.”
The legends of time portals, missing expeditions, tunnel systems leading to fountains, temples, forests and marble rooms go back hundreds of years.
One of the most persistent rumors involves the legend of Karl the Great (of the Holy Roman Empire of German Nation), known in the west as Charles the Great or Charlemagne.
Though physically buried in the German village of Aachen, it is believed that the “astral form” of this emperor sleeps in the mysterious depths of a subterranean throne room, surrounded by his strongest knights, gnomes, frost giants and fire giants, Valkyries and other “Volk,” awaiting the final liberation of his country and kinsmen; that he will rule over a thousand year kingdom of Aryan dominion.
Other accounts maintain this entity is the spirit of the emperor Frederich Barbarossa.
Within the ancient mythologies of the Nordic People are the prophecies that at a future point in time, though time itself is a variable, the “Watcher-god”, Heimdall, will sound his horn to summon the children of Loki (see right).
This semi-divine/human Sixth Race will break their bonds and unite with mystical forces to sail from the land of the Niflheim, located in an astral plane beyond the auroras, waging the final battle with the current “usurpers” of the planet to culminate in the enthronement of their vaticinated king.
It is this anticipated kingdom and its preparation that has been the goal of the ancient spirits. This is the heart of 'The Awakening of the Black Sun'.
The Untersberg is known to be inhabited by certain kinds of elemental spirits of Nature, some of which are good and benevolent, others of a wicked and malicious nature, and inimical to mankind; and there are innumerable tales circulating among the people in the neighborhood, telling about the doings of the gnomes, fairies, and giants, dwelling within caves and in gorgeous marble halls and grottoes filled with gold and precious stones that will turn into dead leaves and stones when seen in the light of day.
“Some of the friendly tribes come out of the Untersberg on certain occasions, and they are said to have sometimes associated with the inhabitants of our plane of existence, partaking in the dances and amusements of the peasants, and even taking stray children with them into the Untersberg; and, incredible as it may appear, it is even asserted by, “those who know” that marriages have taken place between citizens of our world and the inhabitants of the kingdom of gnomes.
Of course it is well known that within the mysterious depths of the Untersberg there dwells the soul of a great emperor in his astral form.
There, together with his retinue, he sleeps an enchanted sleep, waiting for the liberation of his country.
Sometimes very suddenly, even on a clear summer day, clouds are seen to issue from the sides of the mountain; grotesquely-formed ghost-like mists arise from the caverns and precipices, crawling and gliding slowly upwards toward the top, and form on the neighboring peaks also, clouds of monstrous shapes and sometimes of gigantic proportions floating on, until the head of the Untersberg is surrounded by a surging sea of vapours growing dense and dark.
Seldom included in historical analysis of the Third Reich and Adolf Hitler, is the spiritually mesmerizing impact of Mount Untersberg.
Hitler’s first direct encounter took place in 1923, upon which date the future führer would describe his feelings, “It was so wonderful! A view of the Untersberg! Indescribable!”
While not specifically recorded, it is unlikely that the youthful Hitler would have been unaware of the writings of Franz Hartmann.
His obsession with occultism and theosophy, now well documented, would explain the peculiar fascination with the “sleeping dragon” as described by the Dalai Lama.
Having rented Haus Wachenfeld, a small vacation villa across the valley from Mount Untersberg, for four years, it was in 1932, with proceeds earned from royalties from Mein Kampf, that Adolf Hitler purchased what would become the Berghof.

A major renovation of the house soon followed, including a series of extensions, a bowling alley, a library and a basement.
(see Grundstein - Foundation Stone of 1936 - left - with Thule Swastikas)
Most importantly, however, was the construction of a huge picture window, providing a completely open view of the Untersberg.
Hitler was deeply affected by the legend and remarked to Albert Speer, his architect and armaments minister:
Look at the Untersberg over there. It is not just by chance that I have my seat across from it.
In February of 1942, the Fuhrer commented to Heinrich Himmler, “Charlemagne was the one of the greatest men to ever live.”
It may well have been that Adolf Hitler had hoped to see some type of manifestation: his telescopes were specifically designed for earth observation.
Those were the best times of my life,” he would later say. “My great plans were forged there.”
So magnetic was the mountain that the Führer later explained,
I basically built the house around the window,” and he even named the structure Berghof: “The Mountain Court.”
The Berghof has been described as a “Bavarian country house guarded by 2,000 SS troops,” with Adolf Hitler gazing from a “gigantic window… across a valley to the Untersberg massif, a sheer wall of mountain that looms large in Teutonic myths.”
© Copyright Peter Crawford 2013
For almost a decade Obersalzburg had become the 'Holy Mountain' of the Third Reich, drawing thousands of pilgrims to pay homage to their Führer.
On February 2, 1942, Hitler said that his residence in Obersalzberg - Berghof, was "Gralsburg". This indicates a certain connection to the Holy Grail and the Templars.
Just a few days before the end of war some local people reported seeing strange SS convoys that headed toward the Zillertal Alps (a mountain range on the Austrian-Italian border) where they, on their way to the Schleigeiss Glacier, allegedly buried some boxes deep in ice somewhere near a precipice.
Some esoteric authors write that the 'Holy Grail' is here.

A recent expedition (August 2008) into the gigantic cave-system under the mountain revealed that it goes down so far, that its lowest point had not been reached yet.
The cave explorers had to return from their expedition without knowing how far down it goes.
According to a German newspaper report they had gone down 1056 meters before being forced to return at an abyss-like precipce.
This had been accomplished by being able to pass an extremely narrow passageway that had been previously un-passable.
They also discovered more than 800 new passageways and a lake in 930 meters depth.

Initially Hitler rented a chalet called Haus Wachenfeld - a holiday home built in 1916 by Otto Winter, a businessman from Buxtehude.

Winter's widow rented the house to Hitler in 1928, and his half-sister Angela (see right) came to live there as housekeeper, although she left soon after her daughter Geli's 1931 death in Hitler's Munich apartment.
By 1933 Hitler had purchased Haus Wachenfeld with funds he received from the sale of his political manifesto Mein Kampf.
The small chalet-style building was refurbished and much expanded during 1935-36 when it was re-named The Berghof.
A large terrace was built, a dining room was panelled with very costly cembra pine.
Hitler's large study had a telephone switchboard room.
The library contained books "on history, painting, architecture and music."

A great hall was furnished with expensive 'Nordic' style furniture, a large globe and an expansive red marble fireplace mantel.
Behind one wall was a projection booth for evening screenings of films.
A sprawling picture window (see right) could be lowered into the wall to give a sweeping, open air view of -the Untersberg. - And on the terrace Hitler installed the finest, very large terrestial telescopes (see left) so that he could observe the mysterious Untersberg in detail.

In his own memoirs, Nazi Germany's court architect and minister of armaments, Albert Speer, recalled his evening at Hitler's retreat in the Alps above Berchtesgaden, right after the signing of the Nazi-Soviet non-aggression pact that -- with its secret clause giving the Soviet Union part of Poland -- opened the way to the Nazi invasion that triggered World War Two.
Speer wrote : 

"In the course of the night we stood on the terrace of the Berghof with Hitler and marveled at a rare natural spectacle. Northern lights of unusual intensity threw red light on the legend-haunted Untersberg across the valley, while the sky above shimmered in all the colours of the rainbow. The last act of the Götterdämmerung could not have been more effectively staged. The same red light bathed our faces and our hands. The display produced a curiously pensive mood among us. Abruptly turning to one of his military adjutants, Hitler said: ‘Looks like a great deal of blood. This time we won’t bring it off without violence.’” 

© Copyright Peter Crawford 2013

© Copyright Peter Crawford 2013

Haus Wachenfeld - Later known as the Berghof 

The Berghof - Final Form 

Berghof - Terrace

Berghof - Salon

Berghof - The Picture Window

Berghof - Sitting Area

Berghof - Living Room

Berghof - Study

Berghof - Salon

Berghof - Dining Room

Berghof - Dining Room

Berghof - Dining Room

Portrait of Adolf Hitler in Eva Braun's Bedroom

© Copyright Peter Crawford 2013
 *(Adlerhorst - The Eagle's Nest)

The Kehlsteinhaus - 'Adlerhorst' (the Eagle's Nest) is a chalet-style structure erected on a subpeak of the Hoher Göll known as the Kehlstein.

It was built as an extension of the Obersalzberg complex erected in the mountains above Berchtesgaden.
The Kehlsteinhaus was intended as a 50th birthday present for Adolf Hitler to serve as a retreat for Hitler and place for him to entertain visiting dignitaries.
The Kehlsteinhaus was commissioned by Martin Bormann, with construction proceeding over a 13-month period.

It was completed in the summer of 1938, prior to its formal presentation to Hitler on his 50th birthday on April 20, 1939.

It is situated on a ridge at the top of the Kehlstein mountain 1,834 m (6,017 ft), reached by a 6.5 km (4.0 mi) long and 4 m (13 ft) wide road that cost 30 million RMs to build (about 150 million euros in 2007, adjusted in line with inflation).
It includes five tunnels but only one hairpin turn and climbs 800 m (2,600 ft).

The last 124 m (407 ft)[1] up to the Kehlsteinhaus are reached by an elevator bored straight down through the mountain and linked via a tunnel through the granite below that is 124 m (407 ft) long.

The inside of the large elevator car is surfaced with polished brass, Venetian mirrors and green leather.

The main reception room is dominated by a fireplace of red Italian marble, presented by Mussolini.
Much of the furniture was designed by Paul László.
A significant event held at the Kehlsteinhaus was the wedding reception that followed the marriage of Eva Braun's sister Gretl to Hermann Fegelein on June 3, 1944.
The building is often mistakenly referred to as a "tea house", a corruption of its abbreviated name, "D-Haus", short for "Diplomatic Reception Haus".
As a result it is frequently confused with the actual tea house at Hitler's Berghof, the Mooslahnerkopf Teehaus he visited daily after lunch.
Although the site is on the same mountain as the Berghof, Hitler rarely visited the property.

It has been suggested he only visited the Kehlsteinhaus around 10 times, and most times for no more than 30 minutes, however he did receive André François-Poncet (the departing French ambassador to Germany) there on October 18, 1938.
As a result of the lack of close association with Hitler the property was saved from demolition at the end of the war.A trail leads above the Kehlsteinhaus towards the Mannlgrat ridge reaching from the Kehlstein to the summit of the Hoher Goll. The route, which is served by a Klettersteig, is regarded as the easiest to the top.

© Copyright Peter Crawford 2013

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