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SS Diary Could Reveal the Location of Tons of Nazi Gold in Poland

SS Diary Could Reveal the Location of Tons of Nazi Gold in Poland


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A diary that was allegedly written by an SS officer in the dying days of WWII may lead to the discovery of a treasure of Nazi gold that is worth over one billion dollars. The document purports to show where the Nazis deposited tons of gold in Silesia in Poland as the Soviets advanced in 1945. Furthermore, it may reveal many more locations where Nazi gold and looted treasures could be found.

The diary with details on the treasure has been in the possession of the German Masonic Lodge known as the Quedlinburg, which dates back to the Medieval period. Many of its members are the children and grandchildren of old aristocratic families who had ties with the Nazis, indeed one of its former members was SS General Hans Kammer, who helped to design the concentration camps. The Lodge gave the diary to a Polish organization known as the Silesian Bridge to atone for its past members' crimes. Roman Furmaniak, head of the Polish foundation, is quoted by First News as stating that they donated the documents so they “would be free of the baggage of Nazism.”

The diary gives details of 11 locations across Lower Silesia and Opole where valuables including gold, religious artifacts, and bank deposits, as well as art from Germany, Poland, France, Belgium, and Russia are said to be located. ( Śląski Pomost Quedlinburg )

The Diary Reveals SS Operations

This diary was written under a pseudonym, but it is believed that it was written by SS officer Egon Ollenhauer. He was a member of the Lodge and this is how they came into possession of the document.

The entries show that while he was in Silesia in South West Poland the SS officer was charged with collecting gold from the Reichsbank in Breslau, now Wroclaw, and valuables from wealthy German aristocrats and hiding them from the advancing Red Army. In 1945 many Nazis were hiding valuables that had been looted in occupied Europe and also ‘dirty gold which came from the teeth harvested from the jaws of millions gassed in German death camps,’ reports First News.

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The diary details how the SS man collaborated with Dr. Gunther Grundmann, who had been ordered by Himmler to catalogue and hide German artwork at risk from allied bombing and the advancing Soviet army. The SS officer gave details of how he worked with Grundmann to hide the Nazi treasure . It was hidden in a 16th-century palace owned by the aristocratic Hochberg family, who had been major landowners in Silesia since the Middle Ages. The palace is near the town of Roztoka, not far from the border with Czechia.

Hochberg Palace in Roztoka, Poland. ( TemAonline)

The Gruesome Story of Corpses in a Well

In the diary, there is a description of how they hid the treasure in a deep well in the grounds of the palace. It was delivered to the location in trucks that had come under fire presumably from the Red Army. The officer wrote that “The following was placed at the bottom in crates: jewelry, coins and ingots,” according to The Daily Mail .

To hide the gold and other valuables from the Soviets, the well was sealed by an explosion. Ollenhauer writes that “After we finished everything, the well was blown up, filled in and covered.” According to some sources , along with the Nazi gold there are the corpses ‘of several eyewitnesses who heard or observed the operation to destroy the well shaft’ and who had been killed by the SS.

It appears that the Germans left in a hurry and that in the chaos of war the treasure was forgotten about. The Lodge only released the document when those who had a connection to the events had died. In total it is believed that 28 tons of Nazi gold hidden away would be worth up to 1.5 billion dollars today.

Nazi Gold in the Well

Based on the diary and some other documents donated by the Lodge, including a map, Mr. Furmaniak believes that he knows where the well is located that was sealed by the Germans in 1945. He is quoted by Sputnik News as stating that “Based on instructions I received from the Quedlinburgers [Freemasons], I believe I have located the well in the grounds of the palace.” He claims that the diary has been authenticated by several German experts.

The Silesian Bridge Foundation claims to have received the diary (left and right) from a Masonic lodge in Germany that it kept for decades after the end of the war. ( WhatsNews2Day)

Furmaniak has alerted the Polish authorities about the Nazi gold and other valuables. However, they have not confirmed the authenticity of the diary or its claims. The First News reports that ‘A guarded comment by Magdalena Tomaszewska from the Information Centre of the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage only went as far as saying that the ministry could not yet confirm the diary’s authenticity’. The Polish authorities are reluctant to fund the project and have shown little interest in the alleged treasure in Hochberg Palace.

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11 More Treasures Revealed?

The Daily Mail states that Mr. Furmaniak ‘is going public with the findings in an attempt to pressure the government into investigating.’ However, the present owners of the Hochberg Palace, who only bought it in 2017, appear to believe the remarkable story. They are in the process of rebuilding the nearly ruined building and they have erected fences around the site to keep treasure hunters away.

Mr. Furmaniak believes that the “treasure at Hochberg Palace is one of 11 that are hidden across southern Poland, parts of the Czech Republic and eastern Germany,” according to The Daily Mail . These include a collection of paintings by masters such as Rubens that were stolen from mainly Jewish collectors in France.

Representation of Nazi gold. ( Pixabay)

It is believed that some of the sites many hold priceless works of religious art from around the world that were collected by the SS in their efforts to prove their racist theories. The head of the Silesian Bridge and the Lodge are both determined to ensure that the treasures are reunited with the heirs of the original owners.


Nazi diary reveals secret location of WWII treasure under a palace in Poland

A diary that was in the possession of a secret society for decades after the end of World War II may contain a map detailing the location of more than 30 tons (28 metric tons) of gold that was hidden by the Nazis.

Written 75 years ago by a Waffen Schutzstaffel (S.S.) officer using the pseudonym "Michaelis," this journal outlined Nazi commander Heinrich Himmler's plans to hide stolen European riches, artifacts and priceless works of art, according to Polish news site The First News (TFN).

The diary listed 11 sites where Nazis concealed looted gold, jewels, priceless paintings and religious objects. One location that it names is an abandoned well that extends nearly 200 feet (60 meters) underground, beneath the 16th-century Hochberg Palace in the village of Roztoka, in southwestern Poland. The gold at the bottom of the well is thought to have come from the Reichsbank in the Polish town of Breslau (now Wrocław) and is estimated to be worth billions of euros, TFN reported on May 26.

For decades after the war, the "Michaelis" diary was kept secret, hidden away in the town of Quedlinburg, Germany. It was in the possession of a Masonic lodge that has existed as a secret society for more than 1,000 years and counted elite Nazi officers among its members during the time of the Third Reich. One member, allegedly, was "Michaelis," who controlled Nazi transport in southwestern Poland, TFN reported. Lodge members in later years included descendants of Nazi officers, according to TFN.

But in 2019, the lodge gave the diary to a Polish foundation named Silesian Bridge. The foundation announced in March of last year that it had received the journal from its German "partners" &mdash the lodge members in Quedlinburg &mdash who gifted the journal to the people of Poland as "an apology for World War II," TFN reported.

Included with the journal was a map that purportedly pinpointed the location of the well on the Hochberg Palace grounds where the Nazi treasure was hidden, Roman Furmaniak, a representative of Silesian Bridge, told TFN. Additional documents suggest that after the Nazis hid their ill-gotten riches, they murdered witnesses, dumped the bodies in the well, and then detonated explosives to seal the entrance, Furmaniak told TFN.


Secret Diary of SS officer Reveals Location of 11 Hidden Nazi Treasures

Image Credit: Darius Franz Dziewiatek.

Adolf Hitler ordered 28 tons of gold, dozens of pieces of art, jewelry and ancient treasures to be hidden in 11 strategic points across Poland.

The handwritten, hard-to-decipher diary was penned by SS ‘standartenführer Egon Ollenhauer.’

The treasures were hidden across Poland in the last months of the war as the advancing Red Army forced the Natis retreat.

It has been found that Hitler’s SS eventually undertook a large-scale operation where more than 260 Nazi trucks were loaded with valuables including gold, silver, and other precious objects looted from populations across Nazi-held Europe.

Image Credit: Darius Franz Dziewiatek.

The SS officers wanted to protect the treasure from the Soviets.

The diary reveals a detailed list of eleven locations were SS official buried the treasures.

Scholars believe that more than 28 tons go gold are hidden in the treasure caches.

But in addition to containing golden coins, medals, jewelry and a plethora of different artifacts deposited by wealthy people in Wrocław to the local Nazi, the diary of the SS officer reveals the treasures also include as many as 47 pieces of art of great historic importance.

Image Credit: Darius Franz Dziewiatek.

Some of the 11 treasure caches are also believed to hide religious objects that were looted by the Ahnenerbe, established by Heinrich Himmler, the Reichsführer of the SS.

The Nazi government used the Ahnenerbe’s research to justify many of its policies.

For instance, the think tank’s claim that archaeological evidence indicated that the ancient Aryans lived across eastern Europe was cited in justification of German military expansion into that region.

The various items are believed to have been looted from collections France, including works by Botticelli, Rubens, Cezanne, Carravagio, Monet, Dürer, Raffael and Rembrandt, reports the First News.

Roman Furmaniak from the Schlesische Brücke (Silesian Bridge) Foundation which now owns the diary explained to The First News: “About ten years ago, after many discussions, the Quedlinburger lodge decided to hand the diary to the foundation.

“We are releasing information about the diary now as we wanted to wait until all persons who could be connected to the events and the diary had passed away, particularly officers of the Waffen SS. This was the wish of the Quedlinburger lodge.”


Nazi diary reveals secret location of WWII treasure worth billions, report says

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A diary from World War II that may contain the location of a treasure worth billions of dollars and hidden by the Nazis has come into the spotlight for a map it may contain, according to media reports.

The diary was written by a S.S. officer under the pseudonym "Michaelis," Polish news site The First News (TFN) reported. It contained the plans of Heinrich Himmler, who wanted to hide the priceless works of art, artifacts and other riches the Nazis stole during the war. The diary is said to contain a map that shows 11 sites where the Nazis hid the riches, including a 16th-century castle near Roztoka, Poland.

In total, there are believed to be 11 sites in the diary where the treasure is located and may total more than 30 tons of gold.

The gold is believed to be at the bottom of a well, nearly 200 feet under the castle, known as Hochberg Palace. TFN reported the gold is worth billions of euros.

The diary was held for years by a Masonic lodge in Quedlinburg, Germany that counted Nazi officers among its members, including "Michaelis," the author of the diary. In 2019, the lodge gave the diary to the Silesian Bridge Foundation "as an apology for World War II," TFN reported.

Roman Furmaniak, who leads the Silesian Bridge Foundation, told TFN he believes the location in Roztoka is the first of the 11 hiding places mentioned in the diary.

“Based on instructions I received from the Quedlinburgers, I believe I have located the well in the grounds of the palace,” Furmaniak told the news outlet.

Poland's Ministry of Culture and National Heritage, ministry representative Magdalena Tomaszewska said the diary's authenticity has not yet been confirmed.

In addition to the map, Furmaniak said there were additional documents in the diary, including ones that suggest after the Nazis illegally took the artifacts, witnesses were killed and their bodies were dumped in the well, with explosives used to seal the entrance.

The owners of Hochberg Palace are going to restore the building, which has been neglected for years. As the restoration work continues, there will also be a search for the buried well, TFN noted.

Long-lost Nazi artifacts have been found in some unusual places in recent years.

A bust of Nazi leader Adolf Hitler, along with a Nazi flag and several other documents and items from World War II, were found in the basement of the French Senate in September 2019.


New Search for Lost Nazi Treasure to Commence in Poland Next Week

A promising new search for what is believed to be a massive cache of riches that were pilfered by the Nazis during World War II is set to commence in Poland next week. The suspected location of the sizeable treasure came to light last summer when researchers uncovered a diary as well as a number of other written materials, including a map, which were purportedly produced by an SS officer responsible for hiding the loot and, until recently, had been held in secret by a Masonic Lodge in Germany. The intriguing works allegedly revealed 11 places in Poland where the Third Reich had stashed enormous amounts of stolen gold and other valuables at the close of WWII. The veracity of those claims will soon be put to the test by way of a tantalizing treasure hunt.

Next week, a team of researchers known as the Silesian Bridge foundation will reportedly descend upon the Polish village of Minkowskie, specifically the grounds of an 18th century palace which was named in the papers as one of the hiding spots for the hidden riches. Based on the writings of the SS officer, it is thought that the treasure buried at the location could constitute a staggering 11 tons of gold and other valuables distributed across approximately 50 crates. When news of the diary first broke last year, the organization had only shared one specific site listed in the diary, a well in the Polish village of Roztoka where it was said that a jaw-dropping 30 tons of gold had been buried approximately 200 feet below ground.

According to Roman Furmaniak, who heads the Silesian Bridge foundation, they ultimately determined that "it would be a huge task to excavate" the site in Roztoka and, as such, "we are focusing on Minkowskie now because we think it will be easier." He also indicated that the group "are preparing to explore another location" at around the same time that next week's excavation begins. Confident that they will find something at the location since the materials said to have been written by the SS officer have allegedly been authenticated, the group stressed that their ultimate goal is to recover the stolen riches and return them to their original owners.

Fortunately, we may not have to wait long to find out if the hidden treasure claims made in the diary are genuine or merely a clever ruse. While one might understandably be excited about the possibility that a massive amount of lost riches could be recovered in Minkowskie next week, it would also be wise to temper expectations as history indicates that such searches more often than not only result in dashed dreams rather than a momentous discovery. That said, hope springs eternal, so perhaps this particular treasure hunt will finally yield success and lead researchers down a path to the finding additional riches at the remaining ten sites listed in the SS officer's journal.


Quedlinburg, Berlin

Himmler was known to be a firm believer in the occult and had a mysterious church in the town of Quedlinburg dedicated as his place of worship. However, it wasn't the church's immediate premises that he allocated as his prayer space. Instead, he would carry out his worship in the crypt beneath the church. The church was built to honor Heinrich I, the founder of the Saxon dynasty. He united all the Germanic people and created the kingdom of Germany in the 11th century. According to a local historian, over 1000 years later, the Nazis rose as an empire for world domination and King Heinrich became much like a God to them. The church became their site of pilgrimage, as Heinrich's body was once buried in the crypt.

King Heinrich's crypt (Travel Channel)

According to rumors, the Nazis held ceremonies and seances in the crypt, led by the commander of the SS, Himmler. The church was a shrine to Heinrich I, and Himmler was fixated on it for he believed he was Heinrich I reincarnated. Himmler once supposedly organized a seance because he wanted to find the King's bones. While the crypt is dedicated to the former King of Germany, his bones reportedly went missing hundreds of years ago. Himmler supposedly wanted to find the King's bones and place them back in the tomb, because he believed that the King's bones held magical powers. Wildman held a seance in the center of the town with a group of mediums to try and commune with the spirit of King Heinrich.

'Buried Worlds with Don Wildman' premieres on Mondays at 9 pm ET/PT on Travel Channel.

If you have an entertainment scoop or a story for us, please reach out to us on (323) 421-7515


Walbrzych, Poland

The small Polish town of Walbrzych is said to be the resting place of a train filled with treasure worth around a billion pounds, according to sources in 2015.

After consulting historians, the town’s authorities believe a fortune in gold, paintings and precious gems lies aboard a 330ft-long set of carriages hidden underground.

The Nazis left nothing to chance and are believed to have rigged the train with explosives and nerve gas.


Wrecks of SS Minden and MV Wilhelm Gustloff

UK-based Advanced Marine Services claimed it found four tonnes of gold from South American banks in the post room of the SS Minden, which sank in 1939.

The gold, thought to be worth £100million, was believed to be on board the ship and headed to Germany when the boat sank 120 miles southeast of Iceland on September 24, 1939.

Minden’s captain scuttled his ship on orders from Adolf Hitler after it was spotted by British cruisers.

Meanwhile, another theory claims the Nazi gold may be hiding in the wreck of the MV Wilhelm Gustloff.

It has been speculated some £100million worth of gold bars and parts of the Amber Room could have gone down with the ship when it was sunk by the Soviets.

The vessel now has international war grave status after 9,400 died when it went down, which means no-one can dive within 50 metres of the wreck.


35 Creepy Images Of Abandoned Places That Will Give You Goose Bumps

Do you love to wander through abandoned buildings checking to see if you can find anything unusual? Or maybe you like to go through buildings waiting to see if there is any type of paranormal activity lurking around the corner waiting for you? Even if you don’t fall into one of those categories, seeing pictures of the 35 creepiest places on Earth will definitely have the hairs on the back of your neck standing up. Most of these places have been abandoned for years, some are said to be haunted by ghosts, but all of them have a certain type of beauty behind them. This beauty can be found in the surroundings or even in the architecture. Nothing really beats the architecture from hundreds of years ago, especially when you see a lot of ‘cookie-cutter’ houses sprouting up like weeds. If you’re ready to get a little bit scared, check out the creepiest places on Earth below.

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1. Abandoned Church – Europe – While there isn’t a lot of information about this abandoned church in Europe, you can tell by how the chairs are still standing that there is a lot of history within these walls. Before being abandoned, this church was set up for a funeral for a young child. You can still see the tiny coffin set up in front of the chairs.

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2. Abandoned Doll Factory – Spain – Nobody is sure why this doll factory closed, but when the doors closed, they left doll parts throughout the entire building. I don’t think I’d want to get lost in a place like this.

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3. Abandoned Estate – Kiev, Ukraine – This is the former estate of former Ukrainian president, Vikto Yanukovych. When the protests in Ukraine got out of control in February 2014, Yanukovych and his security abandoned this home. Now that it’s abandoned, people have broken in and wandered about taking pictures of everything inside.

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4. Abandoned Mining Town – Kolmanskop, Namib Desert – In the early 1900s, the Germans moved into this town and created a mine where they could look for diamonds and other gems. They then abandoned it in the 1950s. It is now a very popular ghost town where tourists visit.

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5. Abandoned Movie Theater – Detroit, Michigan – We’ve seen building after building that has been abandoned in Detroit due to the economy, and movie theaters were no exception. This movie theater has been taken over the elements and has been left to rot.

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6. Abandoned Train Station – Abkhazia, Georgia – This train station was used to connect Georgia with Russia, but after the Abkhazia War in 1992 and 1993, it was left abandoned. Because it was outdoors, the elements have claimed it as their own. However there are parts of the station that are still in great condition, showcasing amazing architecture and furniture.

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7. Anderlecht Veterinary School – Brussels – It doesn’t seem too odd that this place is nicknamed the Lab of Horrors, considering all of the deceased animals still being stored here. The school was abandoned in the 1990s and each building is being slowly remodeled. But the Anderlecht Veterinary School is the last building to be remodeled, making it a little eery to go inside. Some of the people who are renovating the buildings have said they are too scared to go inside this building because it still stores old medical equipment, deceased animals, and animal parts that have been sewn together.

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8. Aniva Rock Lighthouse – Sakhalinskaya Oblast, Russia – This lighthouse was originally built by Japan in the 1930s, but the Russians took it over and used it throughout World War II. It was powered by nuclear power. During the 1990s, the lighthouse became abandoned and hasn’t been used since.

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9. Ararat County Gaol: J Ward – Ararat, Australia – Rumored to be one of Australia’s most haunted buildings, this was originally built in the 1860s during Victoria’s gold rush. But in 1887, the gold rush was over and they decided to turn this into J Ward, which is a maximum security psychiatric ward which was designated for the criminally insane.

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10. Bhangarh, India – This building may look beautiful during the day, but at night the government forbids anyone from entering the grounds. The story behind Bhangarh is that its haunted by a 16th century musician who was unfortunately rejected by a princess. Because of this, he now bestows death without the possibility of rebirth on everyone. Even if this isn’t true, people still seem to listen to the government’s warning and avoid it after the sunset.

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11. Chateau Miranda – Celles, Belguim – This building was built in 1886 by a French man who wanted to flee the revolution. During World War II however, the National Railway Company of Belgium took control of this building and turned it into an orphanage. In 1991, the owners refused to sell the property causing it to be abandoned.

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12. Chris McCandless’s Bus – Alaska – If this bus doesn’t sound familiar, make sure to read the book or check out the movie titled Into The Wild. This is one of my all-time favorites. I won’t ruin the story completely, but this is the bus that Chris McCandless lived in during the summer of 1992 while he lived off the land. The bus was left there in the 1960s and provided shelter for hikers throughout the years.

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13. Church Of The Nine Ghosts – Lukova, Czech Republic – This church was left abandoned in 1968 but the community fought back and did not want it to go away. A local artist decided to place nine phantoms in the church to draw attention to the spirit of the church. As you can see there are more than nine now, but it definitely has an eery feel when you see it.

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14. City Hall Station – New York City, New York – This particular line in New York wasn’t used much and was ultimately closed in 1945. It was built in 1904.

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15. Craco, Italy – This town in Italy was originally an outpost in the year 1000, but after 500 years people began living there permanently. Because of the location of the city, they are susceptible to natural disasters and they began to take its toll on the people and architecture. In the 1990s, this town was abandoned by all.

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16. Discover Hut – Antarctica – An Antarctic exploration team built this hut in 1904, using it as a place to seek refuge. Because it is so cold in Antarctica, this building has been completely preserved and everything has been left in amazing condition.

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17. Floating Forests – Sydney, Australia – These ships can be found in the harbors of Sydney. They were originally meant to be dismantled after World War II, but when the ship yard closed down, they left the SS Ayrfield along with other ships, untouched. Rather than the ocean taking their toll on them, nature has reclaimed them as their own, growing forests on board.

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18. Glenwood Power Station – New York City, New York – This building was designed by the same architects that built Grand Central Station, as you can see by the beautiful architecture. The building was used from 1908 until 1968, but has been abandoned ever since. While the building isn’t a total loss, there have been a few movies filmed here.

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19. Hashima Island – Japan – Housing 5,000 coal workers, this island was filled with coal and had a booming economy. Once there was no more coal left to extract, everyone left leaving the entire island abandoned.

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20. Hotel de Salto – San Antonio del Tequendama, Colombia – This gorgeous hotel opened its doors in 1923. It had a few good decades of great business until the local river contaminated it forcing them to close their doors. It was closed for some time, but has since been reopened as a museum. People have reported that this hotel is haunted by some of the guests that committed suicide on the grounds.

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21. I.M. Cooling Tower – Monceau, Belgium – This interesting looking hole was used to create electricity and cool down water. It was open from the 1930s and closed recently in 2006.

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22. Isla de las Munecas – Mexico City, Mexico – Rumor has it that the caretaker of these grounds found a young girl who had passed away. He started hanging up dolls to keep her spirit happy. As if that wasn’t creepy enough, the same caretaker who found the girl was found dead in the exact same spot as the young girl.

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23. Military Hospital – Beelitz, Germany – This building was originally used as a hospital, but during World War I they transformed it into a military hospital. They continued to use this hospital until 1995, but the building was just too old to be used continuously. A few of the buildings on the grounds were used for research and other things, but now the grounds lay mostly abandoned.

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24. Old Atlanta Prison Farm – Atlanta, Georgia – This prison was in use from 1945 until 1995, and held low-security inmates that maintained the surrounding farms. They were in charge of the crops, raising livestock, canning veggies, along with maintaining the dairy cows. Since it was abandoned, nobody has taken care of the building, inside or outside. There was even a fire in there, but fire fighters refused to fight it. Since this is an abandoned prison, you can definitely expect to find some paranormal activity throughout.

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25. Old Masonic Lodge – Bannack, Montana – Montana benefited a lot from the Gold Rush, and because of this, a lot of buildings were built to accommodate the miners. But once the Gold Rush was over, those miners picked up and moved along to the next city, leaving buildings like this behind.

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26. Oradour, France – The story behind the destruction of Oradour is heartbreaking. In 1944, the entire town which was made up of 642 men, women, and children were murdered by Nazi soldiers. They thought that they were hiding an officer from them. Come to find out after the slaughter, they were in fact in the wrong town, and all of those people died because of a mistake. There is a new village nearby, but the remains of Oradour are still there and serve as a reminder of the lives that were lost.

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27. Orpheum – New Bedford, Massachusetts – This theater was one of the hot spots when it opened its doors in 1912. But in 1959 they shut their doors and it has been abandoned ever since. It has occasionally been used to store items such as groceries and tobacco. There is currently a movement to restore the Orpheum back to its original state and reopen it as an entertainment venue.

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28. Pripyat, Urkaine – This town was once home to a nuclear power plant, but when that plant had a meltdown in the 1980s, everyone left. Pripyat has been empty ever since, but it has an odd feeling just looking at it. You can almost imagine all of the residents hustling and bustling during their busy day.

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29. Ross Island – India – When India was under British rule, this island was used as the administrative headquarters. There is a lot of beauty on this island from both nature and the architecture. In the 1940s, the island was left abandoned due to earthquakes along with the Japanese invasion.

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30. Ryugyong Hotel – Pyongyang, North Korea – This massive hotel has 105 stories in all. While they were in the process of building it, North Korea fell under a terrible famine and they stopped construction on it for 16 years. They have since finished the hotel, but there are many areas throughout that have been left completely abandoned.

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31. Six Flags Jazzland – New Orleans, Louisiana – When Hurricane Katrina wreaked havoc on New Orleans in 2005, Jazzland was one of the places that received a lot of devastation. They aren’t sure what to do with this piece of land, whether tear it down or try to reopen it, so for now it just stays there completely abandoned.

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32. Spreepark – Berlin, Germany – Spreepark was the only amusement park in East Germany during the 1960s when parts of Germany were under Soviet rule. When the Berlin Wall was torn down, everyone from East Germany started visiting West Germany which had more modern amusement parks, which left Spreeland a thing of the past.

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33. Underwater City – Shicheng, China – The city of Shicheng was built over 1300 years ago and was thriving. When a river was flooded for an electro-hydraulic system 56 years ago, the entire city of Shicheng was found underwater. It still remains underwater and serves as a reminder of the civilization that once occupied this city.

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34. Unoccupied Irish Homes – Ireland – This looks like an amazing neighborhood that new families would dream to occupy, but the eery thing about these homes is that they are completely abandoned. Not one single home has residents, and they’ve actually never been lived in. When the housing market crashed in Ireland in 2008, it left tons of neighborhoods just like this unoccupied and abandoned.

Some of these definitely gave me the chills, like the abandoned doll factory! Seriously, why leave all those dolls right where they were? They couldn’t have taken the dolls and disposed of them instead. With abandoned buildings, especially abandoned prisons, I really wish the walls could talk and tell us the stories of what happened there. Maybe they could reveal some secrets about why the place was abandoned or why it’s haunted and by who. Would you dare to wander through any of these locations? Let us know in the comments.


Contents

The draining of Germany's gold and foreign exchange reserves inhibited the acquisition of materiel, and the Nazi economy, focused on militarisation, could not afford to deplete the means to procure foreign machinery and parts. Nonetheless, towards the end of the 1930s, Germany's foreign reserves were unsustainably low. By 1939, Germany had defaulted upon its foreign loans and most of its trade relied upon command economy barter. [1]

However, this tendency towards autarkic conservation of foreign reserves concealed a trend of expanding official reserves, which occurred through looting assets from annexed Austria, occupied Czechoslovakia, and Nazi-governed Danzig. [2] It is believed that these three sources boosted German official gold reserves by US$71m ($1.3b 2020) between 1937 and 1939. [2] To mask the acquisition, the Reichsbank understated its official reserves in 1939 by $40m relative to the Bank of England's estimates. [2]

During the war, Nazi Germany continued the practice on a much larger scale. Germany expropriated some $550m in gold from foreign governments, including $223m from Belgium and $193m from the Netherlands. [2] These figures do not include gold and other instruments stolen from private citizens or companies. The total value of all assets allegedly stolen by Nazi Germany remains uncertain.

Advancing north from Frankfurt, the US 3rd Army cut into the future Soviet zone when it occupied the western tip of Thuringia. On 4 April 1945 the 90th Infantry Division took Merkers, a few kilometres inside the border in Thuringia. On the morning of the 6th, two military policemen, Pfc. Clyde Harmon and Pfc. Anthony Kline, enforcing the customary orders against civilian circulation during an evening curfew, stopped two women on a road outside Merkers. Since both were French displaced persons, with one of them pregnant attempting to find a doctor, the military policemen decided to bring them back to Pfc. Richard C. Mootz. Luckily for Mootz, he and the women had something in common: they could all speak German. While getting to know them better and escorting them back into the town, they passed the entrance to the Kaiseroda salt mine in Merkers.

The two women told Mootz [3] that the mine contained gold stored by the Germans, along with other treasures. Once back in his unit, he attempted to tell his three other comrades, but they weren't interested in listening. He called other military personnel by noon, the story had passed on up to the chief of staff and the division's G-5 officer, Lt. Col. William A. Russell, who, in a few hours, had the news confirmed by other DPs and by a British sergeant who had been employed in the mine as a prisoner of war and had helped unload the gold. Russell also turned up an assistant director of the National Gallery in Berlin who admitted he was in Merkers to care for paintings stored in the mine. [4]

The next day was Sunday. In the morning, while Colonel Bernard D. Bernstein, Deputy Chief, Financial Branch, G-5, SHAEF, read about the find [5] in the Stars and Stripes ' s Paris edition, [6] 90th Infantry Division engineers blasted a hole in the vault wall to reveal on the other side a room 23 metres (75 ft) wide and 46 metres (151 ft) deep. They found 3,682 bags and cartons of German currency, 80 bags of foreign currency, 8,307 gold bars, 55 boxes of gold bullion, 3,326 bags of gold coins, 63 bags of silver, one bag of platinum bars, eight bags of gold rings and 207 bags and containers of Nazi loot that included valuable artwork. [7]

On Sunday afternoon, Bernstein, after verifying to the fullest the newspaper story with Lt Col R. Tupper Barrett, Chief, Financial Branch, G-5, 12th Army Group, flew to SHAEF Forward at Rheims where he spent the night, it being too late by then to fly into Germany. At noon on Monday, he arrived at General George S. Patton's Third Army Headquarters with instructions from Eisenhower to check the contents of the mine and arrange to have the treasure taken away. While he was there, orders arrived for him to locate a depository farther back in the SHAEF zone and supervise the moving. (Under the Big Three arrangements, the part of Germany containing Merkers would be taken over by the Soviets for military government control after the fighting ended.) [5] Bernstein and Barrett spent Tuesday looking for a site and finally settled on the Reichsbank building in Frankfurt.

The present whereabouts of the Nazi gold that disappeared into European banking institutions in 1945 has been the subject of several books, conspiracy theories, and a civil suit brought in January 2000 in California against the Vatican Bank, the Franciscan Order and other defendants. [8] The suit against the Vatican Bank did not claim that the gold was then in its possession and has since been dismissed. [9] [10]

The Swiss National Bank, the largest gold distribution centre in continental Europe before the war, was the logical venue through which Nazi Germany could dispose of its gold. [11] During the war, the SNB received $440m ($8b 2020) in gold from Nazi sources, of which $316m ($5.8b 2020) is estimated to have been looted. [12] [13]

On October 21, 1946, the U.S. State Department received a Top Secret report from US Treasury Agent Emerson Bigelow. [14] [15] The report established that Bigelow received reliable information on the matter from the American Office of Strategic Services (OSS) or CIC intelligence officials of the US Army. [16] The document, referred to as the "Bigelow Report" (oftentimes as the Bigelow dispatch, or Bigelow memo) was declassified on December 31, 1996, and released in 1997. [17]

The report asserted that in 1945, the Vatican had confiscated 350 million Swiss francs ($1.5b 2020) in Nazi gold for "safekeeping," of which 150 million Swiss francs had been impounded by British authorities at the Austro-Swiss border. The report also stated that the balance of the gold was held in one of the Vatican's numbered Swiss bank accounts. Intelligence reports, which corroborated the Bigelow Report, also suggested that more than 200 million Swiss francs, a sum largely in gold coins, were eventually transferred to Vatican City or to the Institute for Works of Religion (aka the Vatican Bank), with the assistance of Roman Catholic clergy and the Franciscan Order. [18] [19] [20]

Such claims, however, are denied by the Vatican Bank. "There is no basis in reality to the [Bigelow] report", said Vatican spokesman Joaquin Navarro-Valls, as reported in Time magazine. [21]

During the war, Portugal, with neutral status, was one of the centres of tungsten production and sold to both Allied and Axis powers. Tungsten is a critical metal for armaments, especially for armour-piercing bullets and shells. The German armaments industry was nearly entirely dependent on the supplies from Portugal. [22]

During the war, Portugal was the second largest recipient of Nazi gold, after Switzerland. Initially the Nazi trade with Portugal was in hard currency, but in 1941 the Central Bank of Portugal established that much of this was counterfeit and Portuguese leader António de Oliveira Salazar demanded all further payments in gold. [23]

In 2000, Jonathan Diaz, a French bus driver, found documents at the Canfranc International railway station that revealed 78 tonnes (86 short tons) of 'Nazi Gold' had passed through the station. [24] [25]

It is estimated that nearly 91 tonnes (100 short tons) of Nazi gold were laundered through Swiss banks, with only 3.6 tonnes (4 short tons) being returned at the end of the war. [26]


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