Luftwaffe commander's Knight's Cross realises increase of 175%

paulfrasercollectibles

2015-06-26 13:53:45

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Luftwaffe commander's Knight's Cross realises increase of 175%

A Knight's Cross presented to a Luftwaffe commander sold for $110,000 on September 9

A Knight's Cross of the Iron Cross with Oak Leaves, Swords and Diamonds awarded to Luftwaffe commander Albert Kesselring has sold for $110,000.

The lot, which includes a signature from Adolf Hitler, headlined Alexander Historical Auctions' September 9 sale in Maryland, achieving an increase of 175% on a $40,000 estimate.

Kesselring medal crossKesselring received the medal in 1939 for his role in theinvasion in Poland

The medal was the highest accolade available to soldiers serving under the Third Reich and was issued in a total of four grades, of which this is the second highest.

Kesselring (1885-1960) was a Nazi generalfeldmarschall responsible for orchestrating aerial assaults across Europe. He played a significant rolein the Battle of Britain.

After the war, he was accused of ordering troops under his command to commit war crimes in Italy and was sentenced to death at Nuremburg.

However, many on the allied side saw him as a conscientious and honourable opponent worthy of respect.

A number of public figures, including Winston Churchill, spoke out in his defence and his sentence was later commuted to life imprisonment.

He was freed in 1952, partly because his health had begun to fail but also because the Soviet threat necessitated the reformation of the military in West Germany.

Many former Nazis had their sentences waived for this reason.

We have this autographed typewritten letter from Winston Churchill available.

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