An unidentified Jewish buyer paid $1.1 million for Hitler’s gold watch at Alexander Historical Auctions in Chesapeake City, Maryland auction house despite objections from the Jewish community.
The original sale projections of the Huber watch was placed between $2 million to $4 million, according to the Auctioneers, the watch was probably given to Hitler on his birthday in 1933 and then taken from his home by a French soldier in 1945.
Bill Panagopulos, the auction house’s president, confirmed the buyer was a European Jew and said outrage from Jewish leaders about the auctions has caused people to send death threats to his family.
“Many people donate Nazi artefacts to museums and institutions, as we have done,” Pangopulous said. “Others need the money, or simply choose to sell. That is not our decision.”
The watch was auctioned as part of a catalogue including a blue dress that belonged to Hitler’s wife, Eva Braun; signed pictures and correspondence of Nazi officials; and other items belonging to the Nazi leader.
The auctions were criticized in an open letter signed by 34 Jewish leaders, who accused the auction house of “abhorrent” transactions that were overriding the “memory, suffering and pain of others” for financial gain.