Megalomaniac's dream embodied? Globe-shaped bar from 'HITLER'S YACHT' up for grabs at auction (PHOTOS)
The remarkable piece of history comes from the 'Grille,' an aviso ship of the Nazi Germany military fleet, which served as a state yacht during the interbellum. It looks like a globe, with two quarter spheres fashioned from welded steel bars for parallels and meridians. From outside, it appears to be floating in the air with the bartender in the middle. The lot comes with five padded brass barstools, one of which retains the original fabric.
According to US saleroom Alexander Historical Auctions, which is set to sell off the bar later this month, it was salvaged from the 'Grille' when she was being scrapped in the US in the early 1950s. The seller's father was friends with the owner of Doan Salvage Yard, where she was dismantled, and was offered the opportunity to purchase the curiosity.
The bar then was taken to a rural area near Elkton, Maryland, where it was installed in the basement of a house. It spent some time stored in a barn, but otherwise remained untouched for almost 70 years, the description says. The lot is offered "as is, where is," and is expected to earn anywhere between $150,000 and $250,000.
The 'Grille,' a lightly-armored and armed 135-meter ship, was built by Nazi Germany in the mid-1930s and was initially used by the German Navy to host top military brass and other state officials, including Hitler himself. For example, she carried the German military delegation to the coronation of King George VI and Queen Elizabeth in 1937.
During World War II, the ship served as a minelayer and patrol vessel. It was taken by the UK as part of war reparations, before being disarmed and sold into private hands. In 1948 Jewish paramilitary saboteurs, who believed its Lebanese owner would hand it to the national navy, sunk the ship. She was eventually transported to the US and sold for scrap in 1951.
Despite its shape, which any would-be ruler of the world would find appealing, the bar was probably not the part of the 'Grille' most favored by Hitler, who was a teetotaler. According to the captain's memoirs cited by the auction house, he often lectured staff about the virtues of temperance and on one occasion ambushed crew members, who had gathered at the saloon to share a bottle of champagne. Despite attempts to hide the bottle, Hitler spotted it, spilled its sparkly contents and "walked out without uttering a word."
If you like this story, share it with a friend!