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A German Photoalbum from before the War

[Rieger, Karl]: Family Photograph Album. Heilbronn: 1920s through 1940s. Cloth binding with string (broken). About 11 x 8 5/8 inches. 18 leaves, many with glassine interleaves. Most of the photographs are held by photo corners, although a few are pasted in and some are loose. The album is in very good condition. Please note that the reproductions below have been enlarged and cleaned up a good deal. The original pictures were probably taken with conventional cameras (and lenses) and were developed and printed to the normal standards of the time. Many of them show dust and scratches in the negatives. $850.00

The subject of this old family photograph album is not identified, but from internal evidence such as inscriptions on the backs of the photographs, he appears to have been Karl Rieger who was born about 1905 in the German city of Heilbronn. The photographs show him as a young man with friends as he and they take walking and youth hostelling trips together. Later in preparation for enlising in the Luftwaffe he learns to fly gliders. Then he is seen in uniform and at his base in Weikersheim (Baden-Württemberg), including in the dormitory with his fellow airmen. As some point he visited Munich because there are pictures of that city. Finally, there are very poignant scenes of a funeral, for apparently he has been killed in action. One last picture shows him as a young boy with his school class. The album was clearly put together by a loved one. It has photographs of his family, including with his younger brother at home, and possible girlfriends. In addition, there is one particular picture which is of the greatest interest. It shows a Mercedes-Benz 770 touring car—also known as the Großer Mercedes—with someone in civilian clothes standing in the passenger seat and three aides in the back. The face of the man is hidden by a hat, but he can be none other than Adolf Hitler. The time may have been the early 1930s when he was on a campaigning trip. The album is very typical of Germany at the time. It is a most interesting memento of that period.

Karl Rieger
At Home
Youth hostelling Boating with friends
Glider Glider
Airman Rieger Sergeant Rieger


In base office Home, on leave
In the air Funeral
Adolf Hitler Album cover
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