Near the close of World War II, two hell-bent-for-leather American units moved relentlessly toward the village of Berchtesgaden, nestled in the Bavarian Alps. The much-decorated 101st Airborne Division had fought its way from Normandy, Bastogne and through much of Germany, and the illustrious 1269th Engineer Combat Battalion had followed suit, starting south at Marseilles. Both forces would converge on Hitler's hideaway, and awaiting them was a dazzling treasure trove nefariously collected by none other than Reichsmarschall Hermann G?ing. The greedy, art-loving Nazi leader had accumulated a vast and dazzling array of paintings, precious jewels, and many other objets d'art ?four trainloads' worth. Following the age-old adage of "To the victor belong the spoils," the rendezvousing American soldiers helped themselves to the cr?e de la cr?e of the Nazi loot.
Kenneth D. Alford is an internationally recognized historical consultant for television productions involving Nazi looting and is the author of several books. Retired from a career in banking, he lives in Richmond, Virginia. LTC (Ret.) Thomas M. Johnson retired from a military career in the U.S. Army and began a successful career writing militaria books. His edged weapons books have brought him international recognition and are considered a baseline upon which many other references are based. He and his business, Johnson References Books & Militaria are located in Fredericksburg, Virginia. Mike F. Morris, a noted collector of military memorabilia, began his passion for amassing military objects in 1963. A few years later he established the successful Commercial Gun Shows and German Military Objects in Texas. Mike is the co-author of Luger Holsters and Accessories and makes his home in Fredericksburg, Texas.