Albert Speer

Connections

Adolf Hitler
(Politics)
Nazi Party
(Politics)
Albert Speer, Jr.
(Visual Arts)
Wehrmacht
(Military)
Karl Fiehler
(Politics)
Julius Schulte-Frohlinde
(Visual Arts)
Rudolf Hess
(Politics)
 

See also

Albert Speer

Knowledge Identifier: +Albert_Speer

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Albert Speer

German architect who was, for a part of World War II, Minister of Armaments and War Production for the Third Reich add

Category: Visual Arts

Born in 1905, deceased in 1981.

Countries: Germany (71%), United Kingdom (11%), Russia (5%)

Main connections: Adolf Hitler, Nazi Party, Albert Speer, Jr.

Linked to: Allies of World War II, Playboy, Golden Party Badge, Technical University of Munich

 

Timeline


 

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Albert Speer was born in 1905 add something


1918

In 1918, the family moved permanently to their summer home, Schloss-Wolfsbrunnenweg, in Heidelberg add something


1923

Speer began his architectural studies at the University of Karlsruhe instead of a more highly acclaimed institution because the hyperinflation crisis of 1923 limited his parents' income add something


1924

In 1924 when the crisis had abated, he transferred to the "much more reputable" Technical University of Munich add something

 

Rudolf Wolters - In 1924, Wolters met Albert Speer, who was a year behind him


1925

In 1925 he transferred again, this time to the Technical University of Berlin where he studied under Heinrich Tessenow, whom Speer greatly admired add something


1927

After passing his exams in 1927, Speer became Tessenow's assistant, a high honor for a man of 22 add something


1928

Despite this opposition, the two married in Berlin on August 28, 1928; seven years were to elapse before Margarete Speer was invited to stay at her in-laws' home add something


1930

Speer stated he was apolitical when he was a young man, and that he attended a Berlin Nazi rally in December 1930 at the urging of some of his students add something

 

Karl Fiehler - During the 1930s a number of model buildings, prime examples of grandiose Nazi architecture, had been erected by Paul Ludwig Troost, the predecessor of Albert Speer as Hitler's "Court Master Builder", in Munich


1931

In 1931, Speer surrendered his position as Tessenow's assistant because of pay cuts and moved to Mannheim, hoping to use his father's connections to get commissions add something

 

Speer joined the Nazi Party in 1931, launching him on a political and governmental career which lasted fourteen years add something

 

On March 1, 1931, he applied to join the Nazi Party and became member number 474,481 add something


1933

Speer designed the 1933 May Day commemoration in Berlin add something

 

The organizers of the 1933 Nürnberg Nazi Party rally asked Speer to submit designs for the rally, bringing him into contact with Hitler for the first time add something

 

When the commission was completed, Speer returned to Mannheim and remained there as Hitler took office in January 1933 add something

 

Speer in 1933

1933

 

Richard Riemerschmid - After the Nazi regime came to power in 1933, Riemerschmid was forced out of the Werkbund, and in 1943 Hitler forbade the award of the Goethe Medal for Art and Science to him as urged by Albert Speer


1934

When Troost died on January 21, 1934, Speer effectively replaced him as the Party's chief architect add something

 

Julius Schulte-Frohlinde - On the recommendation of Albert Speer, in 1934 Schulte-Frohlinde went to work under Robert Ley's German Labour Front


1937

Speer designed the German Pavilion for the 1937 international exposition in Paris add something

 

Gustav Frohlich - In 1937, he rented his house in Berchtesgaden to Hitler's architect, Albert Speer


1938

In January 1938, Hitler asked Speer to build a new Reich Chancellery on the same site as the existing structure, and said he needed it for urgent foreign policy reasons no later than his next New Year's reception for diplomats on January 10, 1939 add something


1939

From 1939 onward, the Department used the Nuremberg Laws to evict Jewish tenants of non-Jewish landlords in Berlin, to make way for non-Jewish tenants displaced by redevelopment or bombing add something

 

The outbreak of World War II in 1939 led to the postponement, and eventual abandonment, of these plans add something

 

Alfred P. Sloan - "Nazi armaments chief Albert Speer told a congressional investigator that Germany could not have attempted its September 1939 Blitzkrieg of Poland without the performance-boosting additive technology provided by Alfred P. Sloan and General Motors"


1940

In 1940, Joseph Stalin proposed that Speer pay a visit to Moscow add something

 

Hitler visits Paris in 1940 with Speer and sculptor Arno Breker

1940

1941

When Germany invaded the Soviet Union in 1941, Speer came to doubt, despite Hitler's reassurances, that his projects for Berlin would ever be completed add something


1942

According to the minutes of a conference at "Wehrmacht" High Command in March 1942, "It is only Speer's word that counts nowadays add something

 

Erich Raeder - As the U-boats continued to be the arm of the "Kriegsmarine" that was doing most of the fighting, by 1942 Raeder was becoming increasingly overshadowed by Admiral Karl Dönitz, who made little secret of his contempt for the "battleship admiral" Raeder, and started to act more and more independently, for instance, dealing directly with Albert Speer in settling construction targets for the U-boats

 

Wehrmacht - The OKW was given the task of central economic planning and procurement, but the authority and influence of the OKW's war economy office was challenged by the procurement offices of the single branches of service as well as by the Ministry for Armament and Munitions , into which it was merged after the ministry was taken over by Albert Speer in early 1942

 

Joseph Goebbels - A more useful ally was Albert Speer, a Hitler favourite who was appointed Armaments Minister in February 1942

 

Werner Heisenberg - On 4 June 1942, Heisenberg was summoned to report to Albert Speer, Germany's Minister of Armaments, on the prospects for converting the Uranium Club's research toward developing nuclear weapons.


1943

Another legacy was the "Arbeitsstab Wiederaufbau zerstörter Städte" , authorized by Speer in 1943 to rebuild bombed German cities to make them more livable in the age of the automobile add something

 

By 1943, the Allies had gained air superiority over Germany, and bombings of German cities and industry had become commonplace add something

 

In response to Goldhagen's article, Speer had alleged that in writing "Inside the Third Reich", he erred in reporting an incident that happened at another conference at Posen a year later, as happening in 1943 add something

 

In spite of these losses, German production of tanks more than doubled in 1943, production of planes increased by 80 percent, and production time for "Kriegsmarine"'s submarines was reduced from one year to two months add something

 

Speer was so successful in his position that by late 1943, he was widely regarded among the Nazi elite as a possible successor to Hitler add something

 

Goebbels would note in his diary in June 1943, "Speer is still tops with the "Führer" add something

 

Much of the controversy over Speer's knowledge of the Holocaust has centered on his presence at the Posen Conference on October 6, 1943, at which Himmler gave a speech detailing the ongoing Holocaust to Nazi leaders add something

 

On December 10, 1943, Speer visited the underground Mittelwerk V-2 rocket factory that used concentration camp labor add something

 

Speer awarded an Org.Todt ring by Hitler - May 1943

1943

 

Service du travail obligatoire - On 15 September 1943 the Reich Minister of Armaments and War Production Albert Speer concluded an agreement with Vichy government minister Jean Bichelonne exempting many French companies working for Germany from Sauckel's requisitions


1944

In January 1944, Speer fell ill with complications from an inflamed knee, and was away from the office for three months add something

 

Speer's name was included on the list of members of a post-Hitler government drawn up by the conspirators behind the July 1944 assassination plot to kill Hitler add something

 

Karl Gebhardt - In early 1944, Gebhardt treated Albert Speer for fatigue and a swollen knee

 

Junkers Ju 290 - In the spring of 1944, after Albert Speer had taken over the direction of air armaments, the Luftwaffe High Command boldly announced that production of the Ju 290 was to be suspended despite it being urgently needed for maritime reconnaissance; suspending production meant that resources could instead be diverted to building fighter aircraft

 

Wilhelm Furtwangler - Furtwängler was treated relatively well by the Nazis; he had a high profile, and was an important cultural figure, as evidenced by his inclusion in the Gottbegnadeten list of September 1944 and Hitler, in gratitude for Furtwängler's refusal to leave Berlin, even when it was being bombed by the allies, ordered Albert Speer to build a special air raid shelter for the conductor and his family in his house


1945

Speer testified that he had planned to kill Hitler in early 1945 by dropping a canister of poison gas into the bunker's air intake add something

 

The second Chancellery was damaged by the Battle of Berlin in 1945 and was eventually dismantled by the Soviets, its stone used for a war memorial add something

 

By February 1945, Speer, who had long concluded that the war was lost, was working to supply areas about to be occupied with food and materials to get them through the hard times ahead add something

 

On March 19, 1945, Hitler issued his Nero Decree, ordering a scorched earth policy in both Germany and the occupied territories add something

 

In September 1945, he was told that he would be tried for war crimes, and several days later, he was taken to Nuremberg and incarcerated there add something

 

Leading members of the Flensburg Government after their arrest. Karl Dönitz is followed by Speer and Alfred Jodl .

1945

1946

On October 1, 1946, he was sentenced to 20 years' imprisonment add something


1947

On July 18, 1947, Speer and his six fellow prisoners, all former high officials of the Nazi regime, were flown from Nuremberg to Berlin under heavy guard add something


1951

Speer spent most of his sentence at Spandau Prison

1952

From 1952 the prisoners were able to order books from the Berlin central library in Wilmersdorf add something


1953

As early as 1953, when Wolters strongly objected to Speer referring to Hitler in the memoirs draft as a criminal, Speer had predicted that were the writings to be published, he would lose a "good many friends" add something


1954

By 1954, Speer had completed his memoirs, which became the basis of "Inside the Third Reich", and which Wolters arranged to have transcribed onto 1,100 typewritten pages add something


1966

Speer served his full sentence, and was released on the stroke of midnight as October 1, 1966 began add something

 

He said little, reserving most comments for a major interview published in "Der Spiegel" in November 1966, in which he again took personal responsibility for crimes of the Nazi regime add something

 

Eugene K. Bird - After the publication of the book, Bird campaigned to have Hess released from what had effectively become permanent solitary confinement after Albert Speer and Baldur von Schirach were released in 1966

 

Rudolf Hess - After the release in 1966 of Baldur von Schirach and Albert Speer, Hess was the sole remaining inmate of Spandau Prison, partly at the insistence of the Soviets


1967

Since 1967, it has served as the offices of the Royal Society add something


1971

In 1971, American historian Erich Goldhagen published an article arguing that Speer was present for Himmler's speech add something

 

Playboy - He did an extensive, in-depth interview for the June 1971 issue of "Playboy" magazine, in which he stated, "If I didn't see it, it was because I didn't want to see it add something


1973

In October 1973, Speer made his first trip to Britain, flying to London under an assumed name to be interviewed on the BBC "Midweek" programme by Ludovic Kennedy add something


1979

Indro Montanelli - Albert Speer, who had been in the convoy with fellow artist Arno Breker, corroborated the story in 1979


1980

Anselm Kiefer - A series of paintings Kiefer executed between 1980 and 1983 depict looming stone edifices, referencing famous examples of National Socialist architecture, particularly buildings designed by Albert Speer and Wilhelm Kreis.


1981

Speer died of natural causes in 1981 while on a visit to London add something


Albert Speer died in 1981 add something

 

While in London eight years later to participate in the BBC "Newsnight" programme, Speer suffered a stroke and died on September 1, 1981 add something


1982

The Cathedral of light above the Zeppelintribune

 

Derek Newark - In 1982, he played Martin Bormann in the TV series, based on Albert Speer's 'Inside the Third Reich'


1984

Reichsminister Speer rests on a doorstep

 

Albert Speer, Jr. - In 1984 he founded the company "Büro Albert Speer & Partner" in Frankfurt am Main, which currently has more than 100 employees and is one of the biggest and most well-reputed architectural and urban planning companies in Germany


2005

In 2005, "The Daily Telegraph" reported that documents had surfaced indicating that Speer had approved the allocation of materials for the expansion of Auschwitz after two of his assistants toured the facility on a day when almost a thousand Jews were murdered add something


2006

In his 2006 book, "The Wages of Destruction", Tooze, following Gitta Sereny, argues that Speer's ideological commitment to the Nazi cause was greater than he claimed add something


2007

A letter reported in the press in 2007 that Speer sent to a Belgian widow in 1971 made it clear Speer was indeed aware of the holocaust add something

 

In 2007, however, correspondence between Speer and a Belgian resistance widow Hélène Jeanty, made it clear that Speer had indeed been present for Himmler's presentation add something


2011

Entrance Villa Speer, Heidelberg, in December 2011

2013

Albert Speer: The "Good Nazi-:" Yesterday TV channel, UK, 17,00, 18 December 2013In the letter to Jeanty, written on December 23, 1971, Speer wrote: "There is no doubt - I was present as Himmler announced on October 6, 1943 that all Jews would be killed add something


2015

Josef Thorak - On 20 May 2015, two of Thorak's sculptures, a pair of colossal "striding horses" that had once stood outside the Reich Chancellery built by Albert Speer in Berlin, turned up during a police raid on a storehouse in Bad Dürkheim, along with other Nazi art


2975

Speer travelling by plane