- Hardcover: 224 pages
- Publisher: McFarland & Company (December 29, 2006)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0786424583
- ISBN-13: 978-0786424580
- Product Dimensions: 10.4 x 7.1 x 0.7 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5,987,413 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Hitler's Mountain: The Fuhrer, the Obersalzberg And the American Occupation of Berchtesgaden
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About the Author
Arthur H. Mitchell is a professor of history at the Salkehatchie Campus of the University of South Carolina. He lives in Allendale, South Carolina.
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Top Customer Reviews
My one suggestion would have been that he make more contact with the servicemen and their families that made use of the buildings and property that were formally under nazi control. They were such a influence in the town and surrounding mountains, and in turn the Obersalzberg and Berchtesgaden left their mark on them. Twenty-five years after the end of the war many of the bunker tunnels were finally reopened and it was incredible to still smell the smoke that was left from burning war documents. The destruction of these bunkers in later years is hardly mentioned.
There were so many fascinating stories of the `cold war' occupation that were skipped over both as a time period and of the GI's and their families dining and dancing in the former SS and nazi property. The General Walker hotel, the former Platterhof and the Berchtesgadener Hof and several other facilities in that particular area were usually filled to capacity with servicemen and their families.
Mitchell gives some background history of Hitler and of Berchtesgaden and Obersalzberg, but the focus is on the time that Hitler occupied the mountain; the details of the Berghof and his visits and life there. There are many black and white photographs interspersed throughout the book. There are numerous descriptions of the allied entry and descriptions of what they found, such as the only thing in Hitler's safe, much to their disappointment were 12 copies of "Mein Kampf", but at least they were autographed, and then their time there immediately at the war's end.
Some interesting insights are made, especially one of Hap Arnold's that they would not bomb the area because they wanted Hitler alive to keep making mistakes. The rumors and the facts of the Alpine Redoubt are covered as well as the step by step advance of the American and Allied forces, including generals that are normally overlooked like Patch and Devers.
One statement that I wish was explained was the "American occupation of southern Germany was both a great success and an unacknowledged failure". It is not a very flattering picture of the occupation forces that is told...even enlisted families living in luxury with 3 servants while Germans faced a grim existence.
This is a fascinating book on a subject that is still of interest but lost for the most part to those who found its' history compelling. It still makes a captivating book to read.