25.03.

1949: The German Emperor’s Son who Became a Nazi Obergruppenführer

1949: The German Emperor’s Son who Became a Nazi Obergruppenführer
Photo Credit To http://resources21.kb.nl/gvn/SFA03/SFA03_SFA022821549_X.jpg

Hitler used August Wilhelm for propaganda purposes because the prince gave the Nazi regime greater prestige.

Prince August Wilhelm of Prussia died on this date in 1949 in the city of Stuttgart. He was the fourth of six sons of the last German emperor, Wilhelm II from the Hohenzollern dynasty. August Wilhelm was born in 1887 in Potsdam. Unlike his father, who had been forced to leave Germany after his abdication, prince August Wilhelm continued to live near Berlin during the interwar period.

He forged close ties with the Nazi Party (NSDAP), becoming its formal member in 1930. He allegedly received the low member number 24, making him symbolically part of the elite circle within the Party. The next year he also became a member of the SA (Sturmabteilung).

Hitler used August Wilhelm for propaganda purposes because the prince gave the Nazi regime greater prestige. He took him along to his public speeches and the prince’s name appeared don electoral lists of the Nazi Party. In 1938 he received the rank of SA-Obergruppenführer, the highest in that organization save for the Supreme SA-Leader. August Wilhelm became the only Prussian prince to hold such a high rank in the Nazi hierarchy.

The prince allegedly supported the Nazis because he saw it as a way to return to the German imperial throne. Hitler, however, later worked to marginalize the prince and showed no intention of restoring the Empire.

After the end of World War II, the prince was captured by American troops and spent several years in prison. He died at the age of 62, soon after he was released.

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