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Signed postcard photo of Hess in his Nazi uniform, accompanied by a series of 1987 letters concerning a petition for his release from Spandau Prison.

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Signed postcard photo of Hess in his Nazi uniform, accompanied by a series of 1987 letters concerning a petition for his release from Spandau Prison. Among the 6 letters are two typed letters in English signed by Hess' son Wolf, and a copy of a letter from Canada's Foreign Secretary (and former Prime Minister) Joe Clark, declining to involve Canada.
Collection, composed of 1) Postcard Photograph signed: "R Hess". B/w, 3½x5½. Photo shows a middle aged Hess wearing his paramilitary Nazi Party uniform, with collar insignia of a Haupt Dienstleiter. 2) Typed Letter signed: "W. R. Hess", 1 page, 8¼x11½. Grafelfing, (West German), 1982 November 2. On personal letter head to Hugh Trueman, Mississauga, Ontario, Canada. In full: "I have to apologize for not having answered your kind letter of August 22 for such a long time. I have been traveling abroad most of the recent months and a lot of private mail remained unanswered on my desk. First of all I would like to thank you for your interest in the sad fate of my father. I would very much appreciate if you could organize the petition you are mentioning in your letter. You are quite right: the only reason my father is still in Berlin-Spandau Prison is the lack of political courage among the three Western powers guarding him.  Regarding Mr. Hugh Thomas's book my only comment is: utter nonsense! Of course the man in Spandau is Rudolf Hess and he in fact has the scars from the shot during the first World War. With my best regards yours sincerely". 3) Typed Letter signed: "W. R. Hess", 1 page, 8¼x11½. Grafelfing, (West German), 1987 February 11. On personal letter head to Hugh Trueman, Mississauga, Ontario, Canada. In full: "Thank you for your letter of February 11, 1987, with enclosures. I appreciate very much the step you have taken and would be interested to hear about any reply. As you can see above my address is still the same. Sincerely yours."  4) Typed Letter signed: "Don Blenkarn" as a Member of Parliament, 1 page, 8½x11. Ottawa, Canada, 1987 February 2. On his personal letterhead from Canada's House of Commons to Hugh Trueman, forwarding a copy of his letter to Foreign Secretary Joe Clark. In part: "I very much agree with your assessment. It seems to me ridiculous that Rudolph [sic] should still be in jail at his age." 5) Photocopy of a typed letter from Blenkarn to Foreign Secretary Clark, forwarding a copy of a letter from Trueman with his endorsement of its content urging the release of Hess. 6) Carbon copy of a typed letter (1987 February 11) from Hugh Trueman to W. R. Hess stating that he has "at long last taken the first step in trying to have Canada publicly advocate your father's release," and explaining that he had delayed doing so because the effort seemed futile until the arrival of a new Soviet regime. [Gorbachev]. 7) Carbon copy of a typed letter signed from Joe Clark as Secretary of State for External Affairs, 1 page, 8½x11. Ontario, Canada, 1987 March 24. On official letterhead Don Blenkarn, M. P., House of Commons. In full: "Thank you for your letter dated February 2, 1987, enclosing a copy of a letter from Mr. Hugh Trueman, one of your constituents, concerning the Hess matter. I have taken note of Mr. Trueman's appeal in favor of Rudolph [sic] Hess who was convicted of war crimes by the Nuremberg Tribunal and is now serving a life sentence in the Spandau Prison in West Berlin. I understand he is in failing health. As you may be aware, Spandau is a prison directly under the control of the United States, Britain, France, and the Soviet Union, the four Occupying Powers who alone are competent to make any decision affecting Mr. Hess. I am informed that appeals have been made by individuals and groups in the Federal Republic of Germany for the release of Mr. Hess but that these have consistently failed as the Soviet Union has always refused to allow his release. Given this situation, it is difficult to see on what grounds Canada could or should intervene as this question is solely within the jurisdiction of the Four Occupying Powers. Yours sincerely". 8) Typed Letter signed "Don" (1987 March 25) from Blenkarn to Trueman transmitting Foreign Secretary Clark's TLS responding negatively to the request. 9) Certificate of registered mail (5¾x4), bearing Canadian and German postmarks, acknowledging receipt of a letter mailed from Trueman to W. R. Hess. (Receipt signature illegible, but not that of W. R. Hess). RUDOLF HESS (1894-1987), a decorated and frequently wounded German veteran of World War I, became a devoted follower of Hitler from their first meeting in 1920. As Hitler's personal secretary and then Deputy Fuhrer, he was the #3 man in the Nazi hierarchy, after Herman Goering and Hitler himself. Because he was not as personally ambitious as many of the Nazi leaders, his influence slipped in the 1930s, but he remained close to Hitler. On May 10, 1941, as Germany planned its surprise attack on the Soviet Union, Hess, apparently without Hitler's prior knowledge, flew by himself to Scotland with the intent of proposing peace between Germany and Britain. He planned to meet the Duke of Hamilton, believed to be sympathetic to Germany. Hess' proposal would have been return of most Western territories conquered by Germany, in exchange for Britain's full support in an attack on the USSR. Hess was arrested and held prisoner in Britain until 1946, when he was tried at the Nuremberg Tribunal with other surviving Nazis. Convicted of crimes against peace and conspiracy to launch an aggressive war, Hess was sentenced to life imprisonment. Contrary to Foreign Secretary Clark's letter, Hess was not found guilty of war crimes or of crimes against humanity. Hess was confined with other Nazis at Spandau Prison in Berlin, under guard by the 4 occupying powers. After the release of Albert Speer and Baldur von Schirach in 1966, Hess was the only prisoner there. The Western powers were willing to consider the release of Hess, but the Soviet Union always rejected the idea. (Stalin had believed that Britain had seriously negotiated with Hess about a separate peace, and this belief may have continued to shape the Soviet attitude.) Hugh Truman's appeal for Hess' release came too late. Although the new Soviet leadership under Mikhail Gorbachev was agreeable to release of the ailing Hess, he was found dead, an apparent suicide, on August 17, 1987. Spandau prison was demolished to prevent its becoming a neo-Nazi shrine. WOLF RUDIGER HESS (1937-2001), Rudolf Hess' son and Hitler's godson, an architect, was an unrepentant admirer of Hitler and a prominent figure on the German far right. After his father's death, he wrote a book claiming that Rudolf Hess had been murdered by British intelligence officers to prevent him from revealing secrets about the flight to Britain. The Hugh Thomas book (1979) denounced by Wolf Hess, had claimed that the "Rudolf Hess" imprisoned at Spandau was an imposter, and that the real Rudolf Hess had already been killed. Still classified British documents about Hess's flight, the subject of many conspiracy theories, are to be released in 2016. Charles Joseph "JOE" CLARK (b.1939) was Canada's Prime Minister (1979-1980), leading a weak coalition government which lost power after one year. Clark was replaced by Brian Mulroney as leader of the Progressive Conservative Party at the Party's 1983 convention, but he served as Secretary of State for External Affairs when Mulroney became Prime Minister (1984-1991). Hess photo rippled at horizontal edges, with slight tear to top edge. Otherwise, fine condition. Normal mailing folds and light toning to the letters. The postal receipt contains a small tear at top left.

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