In the 1930s, German dictator Adolf Hitler found himself in the position of being extorted by his own nephew over some dirty family secrets that threatened to bring down Der Fuehrer’s regime. The threats brought the two Hitler’s to conflict and compelled William Patrick Hitler to commit irrational acts.
Alois Hitler was Adolf Hitler’s half-brother. Alois had moved to England in 1910 where he married an English woman and had a son named William Patrick Hitler, born in 1911.
Alois abandoned his family in 1914 and returned to Germany where he married again bigamously. He never saw his son again until 1933. Alois remarried in 1916 and had another son named Heinz.
When William was in his early 20s, he and his mother had experienced hardships. They subsided mostly from public assistance. William was delighted when he heard his uncle Adolf had risen to power in Germany. He hoped his uncle would be willing to help him and his mother by giving him a high paying job in the German Government.
Following Adolf Hitler’s rise to power, William gave a few interviews to English newspapers in which he discussed his father, whom he couldn’t remember, and his uncle and half-brother, whom he had never met. He expressed a desire to meet his uncle and learn more of his family.
When Adolf read the articles he made arrangements to have his nephew and former sister-in-law flown to Germany for a meeting.
William wanted to benefit from his uncle’s influence in Nazi Germany. Uncle Adolf found him a job in a bank. Later, William worked at the Opel car factory and then as a car salesman.
Dissatisfied, William persisted in asking his uncle for a better job and there were rumors he might sell embarrassing stories about the family to the press if he did not receive one. Among the rumors would have been his father’s bigamous marriage.
In 1938 Hitler asked William to relinquish his British citizenship in exchange for a high ranking job. Fearing a trap, William panicked and fled Germany. He then tried to blackmail Hitler with threats to leak the dictator’s dirty family secrets to the press. Returning to London he wrote an article for Look magazine titled, “Why I Hate My Uncle.”
In 1939, William and his mother went to the United States on a lecture tour where he made a few lectures in which he vehemently criticized his uncle and further exposed his anti-Semitism.
He discussed his uncle’s ideology in length of which he was critical. He went on to disclose the fact that mental illness and mental retardation ran in Hitler’s family. The dictator had one relative who was committed to a mental asylum, another who committed suicide, another who was described as feeble-minded and another who was mentally challenged.
During his regime, Hitler had many who were diagnosed with such disorders exterminated, deeming them as unfit for German society.
Back in Germany, Hitler was enraged by reports of his nephew’s revelations. But, as his generals were quick to point out, he had more important matters to attend, the conquest of Europe.
While William was traveling the United States on the lecture circuit, the Battle of Britain began when the German Air force, the Luftwaffe, began hammering London in a relentless bombing campaign intended to bring the British to their knees. It was fortunate William had gone to America as during the last air campaign over England in 1942, the home William shared with his mother in Liverpool was completely destroyed.
His plans to capitalize on the lecture circuit were quickly coming to an end. No one was interested in anything a Hitler had to say. His money dwindling, he made plans to join the United States Navy. The two Hitler brothers would soon be on opposing sides.
William’s half-brother Heinz became a German officer stationed on the Russian front. Heinz received Christmas cards from his Uncle Adolf. Although, he kept in constant contact with his father and uncle he had no contact with William who was regarded as the black sheep of the family. Heinz later died in a Russian POW camp.
In Germany, the tide of the war had turned against Adolf Hitler. Allied armies successfully invaded Germany and began the siege on Berlin, the German capital. Hitler took up residence in an underground bunker where he committed suicide on April 29, 1945.
With the death of Hitler the world began to once again move toward peace. But, peace would not be forthcoming for William. He was honorably discharged from the navy in 1947. He married a woman named Phyllis Jean Jacques with whom he fathered four sons, Alexander Adolph, Louis, Howard and Brian.
He continued to write articles about his uncle and continued to lecture. But, the horrifying and shocking stories of the Holocaust were now known around the world and it wasn’t safe for Hitler’s anywhere. The burden of his last name proved too much for William. He and Phyllis opted to have their names legally changed to disassociate himself with his infamous Uncle.
He had no grandchildren as all of his sons chose not to have children in an effort to end the Hitler bloodline. William died in 1987 and is buried in Coram, New York.
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