When we read this here at the Goldwater, most of us immediately had a vision of the auctioneer saying: the following item on the list up for your bidding is…. a pair of once worn underpants. In fact, the exact description in the auction manifest handed out to bidders was: "A monogrammed pair of Adolf Hitler's striped white linen under shorts. The shorts are surprisingly large - 19-inches long, with a waist of about 39 inches.”
2,000 dollars for the gentleman with the striped tie over there, 3,000 from the gentleman on the phone…
And there you have it. Auctioneer Bill Panagopulos sold a pair of Adolf Hitler’s underpants today for no less than 6,700$ in the end. It would appear they were left by the infamous German leader during a stay in the luxury Parkhotel Graz in Austria after he stayed there in April 1938, just after the ‘Anschluss’ with Austria if you will (for those of you who don’t know what that means, read some history).
Bill, the owner of Alexander Historical Auctions in Chesapeake City, Maryland, said:
"People tend to either buy fearsome Hitler memorabilia, or things that make him look like a buffoon. such as this.
"To minimise a monster, you make people laugh at him. We've sold underwear belonging to Eva Braun, who was Hitler's wife, before, but never any belonging to Hitler himself. I think this is the first pair to come to market.
"They were retained in the family who owned the hotel, which is very prestigious, for almost 80 years, and when we got them they were wrapped in tissue paper in a box. They were as clean as if they had just come back from the cleaners.
"It's a fascinating thing. It's as close as you can get to Adolf Hitler, literally."
The seller of the pair of undies was the grandson of the hotel’s owner.