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Sale 45 Lot 9

FRIEDRICH PAULUS
(1890 - 1957) German field marshal who headed the 6th Army's drive on Stalingrad. Paulus found himself surrounded there and surrendered his starving army on Jan. 31, 1943. He returned to Germany to testify at the Nuremburg War Crimes trials. Rare A.L.S. "Friedrich Paulus" with a second signature in Cyrillic letters, 1p. large 4to., Moscow, June 17, 1951. As a prisoner of the Russians, Paulus pens a letter to his son, Ernst. He reports that he is well and asks how the family is doing, since he hasn't received mail from them in a long time. He congratulates Axel for his upcoming birthday, and writes about a still life of lilac flowers that he just completed. He states that his life is uneventful, and hopes that the family can go on a summer vacation without him. He writes that Nelly sent him post cards, and he would like to hear again from Pussy. Fine condition. Included in the lot is an excessively rare original watercolor painted by Paulus and signed "P" at right, captioned "Ljunowo" and dated 1945. The image shows an office-like structure with trees, bushes and a wood fence before it. This was no routine building: Ljunowo, about fifty miles from Moscow, was the site of the National Committee for a Free Germany - a German anti-Nazi organization that operated in the Soviet Union during World War II. The NKFD activity focused on propaganda, printing its own newspaper and transmitting from a radio station. Additionally, leaflets were sent to German soldiers at the front and POWs in the Soviet camps. Towards the very end of the war so-called "Seydlitz-Troops" were sent to the German lines in uniform with orders to blend in with the defenders and spread confusion. Some rejoined their former comrades and others followed their orders. Many were caught and executed. Paulus was one of the highest-ranking members of the NKFD, leading us to believe that the structure he painted was indeed their headquarters.
Estimate $ 1,000-1,500

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