A Device Of Destruction: Hitler's Phone To Be Sold As Much As $300,000
The mobile device of destruction, which was the telephone that Adolf Hitler used to order the deaths of millions of people, will be sold at auction in the United States this February. Hitler's phone was recovered from the Fuhrer bunker and was stored in a box at an English country house since 1945.
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The phone dubbed as the "arguably the most destructive weapon of all time" could be sold for as much as $300,000 when it goes up for sale on Feb. 19. The phone is already chipped and on its backside, the name Hitler and a swastika are engraved. It is a Bakelite phone made by Siemens. The Alexander Historical Auctions in Maryland called the phone as "Hitler's mobile device of destruction" that sent millions to deaths around the world, according to Fox News.
The auction house noted that the British officer, Ralph Rayner, recaptured the phone from Hitler's bunker while visiting Berlin on the orders of Field Marshall Bernard Montgomery just days after the end of the war. He was probably the very first non-Soviet victor to enter Hitler's bunker.
Rayner's son, Ranulf, 82, inherited the phone after his father's death in 1977. Ranulf told CNN that his father did not see it as a relic of Hitler's glory days, more as a battered remnant of his defeat, a sort of war trophy. He added that his father never thought it would become an important artifact.
According to Ranulf, his father said that he could still smell burning flesh. He remembered his father's description of the underground shelter where Hitler spent his final days. He described it as a "dreadful hellhole."
Ralph Rayner also recaptured a porcelain Alsatian, which was made by slave laborers in Dachau concentration camp. Ranulph hopes that Hitler's phone and the Alsatian model will be bought by a museum, rather than by a private collector. He further said that he does not want them to be hidden again. "I want them to remind the world of the horrors of war."