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Friday, 21 January, 2000, 06:57 GMT
Hitler's notes up for sale

The notes were used for a speech in 1939


Hitler's handwritten notes for one of his most well-known speeches are to go on sale in the UK.

The notes, which were swapped for a packet of cigarettes, are expected to fetch up to 20,000.

The Nazi dictator used the pointer cards to guide him through a speech to the Reichstag in 1939.

Wing Commander Ronald Mason, now 79, swapped them for the cigarettes with a desperate German civilian in Berlin at the end of World War II in 1945.

The airman, who had arrived in Berlin as an RAF flight lieutenant, said the German claimed to have worked in Hitler's office.

Threats against Jews

The deal was forged outside Hitler's ruined Chancellery.

Wing Commander Mason, who lives near Swindon, Wiltshire, also took a piece of marble from Hitler's desk.

The speech at the German parliament covered issues such as the Nazis taking power, unemployment and also made threats against the Jews.

In the speech Hitler said: "They (Jews) are laughing on the other side of their faces."

The six postcard-sized cards will go on sale at Dominic Winter Book Auctions in Swindon on 2 March.

Colour sketch

Mr Winter said: "The owner is local. He just walked in with them one day and asked us if we thought they were worth anything.

"We've had some Hitler material before but not of this magnitude. It should raise quite a bit of money."

The scribbled notes include a colour sketch of the Nazi swastika.

Wing Commander Mason told the Reuters news agency the German had told him the notes were "quite genuine".

He said: "Without much to do I gave him a packet of fags and he went on his way.

"When one realises how many lives were destroyed as a result of (Hitler's) actions, it's a very peculiar feeling to be holding something which he actually handled."

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04 Nov 99 |  UK
War ultimatum fetches 2,400

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