A look … at the collection – Newsletter 2 – 2011

A look … at the collection

Bronze Eagle

heavyweight bronze eagles have recently come into the possession of the Dachau
Concentration Camp Memorial Site. As an emblem of the Third Reich they originally
hung over the entrances to the main barracks of the SS training camp at Dachau.
Heinrich Himmler had inaugurated the barracks of the SS Death Head’s Unit
“Oberbayern” on March 29, 1936. Further Reich eagles made of bronze or stone
were hung above the entrances to the SS camp; they have not survived.

As the
US Army took over the SS grounds after liberating the Dachau concentration
camp, they left the two eagles where they were. The Americans removed the
swastikas from the garland of oak leaf and applied a dab of paint. Recast as
the Bald Eagle, the national symbol of the United States, they have remained
like this down to the present day.

We would
like to thank the Bavarian Riot Police Dachau, users of the grounds since 1973,
for handing over the objects.


Source picture above: Bavarian Riot Police
Source picture Teaser: Bundesarchiv Koblenz