|Brian Hitler, one of the three
sons of William P. Hitler, like
his two other brothers,
changed his name and gave up
the idea to have children
April 20, 1889
Adolph Hitler is born.....
Alois & Klara Hitler are happy to announce that :
Their son Adolf is born on Sunday April 20th 1889 at 6pm in Braunau-am-Inn, a small
village in Upper Austria, part of the Austro-Hungarian empire of the Habsburgs. He
will be baptized in the Catholic Church in two days. Click here to see a full family
tree of our beloved last son Adolf.
Hitler's Father, Alois Sr., was a custom agent and appears to have been an
authoritarian person, excessively proud of his social status and his title of Herr
Oberoffizial Hitler. He felt insulted when someone called him only "Herr Offizial". His
origins are dubious : his mother, Maria Anna Schickelgruber was born in 1795 in a
family of an Austrian peasant named Johann Shickelgruber who had 11 children. In
1837, she was 42 years old, and still single, when her first and only child was born.
She named the boy Alois but she refused to reveal who the child's father was, so the
priest of Döllersheim baptized him Alois Schicklgruber, and entered "illegitimate" in
place of the father's name on the baptismal register. Maria soon took up residence
with her father at house #22 in Strones. After an unknown period, the three
Schicklgrubers were joined by Johann Georg Hiedler, an itinerant journeyman miller.
On May 10, 1842, five years after Alois was born, Maria Anna Schicklgruber married
Johann Georg Hiedler in the nearby village of Döllersheim. Maria was 47, her new
husband was 50. Sometime after Maria got married, Alois was sent to live with
Johann Georg's brother, Johann Nepomuk Hiedler, who had a modest but
prosperous farm in the village of Spital. Maria and Johann Georg then moved to
The reason Alois was sent away is not known, the poor health of Maria might be a reason. She died during the
sixth year of her marriage, at the age of 52, in Klein-Motten (Austria) where she was living with her husband in
the home of kins, the Sillip family. The Döllersheim parish record states Maria died of consumption resulting
from pectoral dropsy in 1847. Alois was only 10 years old so he was raised by a man who probably was not
his biological father. He will stay in this family under the name of Alois Shickelgruber until 1850.
A rigid, even pedantic man
Alois left Johann Nepomuk's home in 1850 after a few years of primary school to start as an apprentice with
a shoemaker in Spital but soon after went to Vienna. In 1855, he entered the Austrian Department of Financial
Supervision as a border guard. In 1864, he became a civil servant ; in 1875 a customs official in Braunau ; in
1892, temporary chief customs official in Passau : in 1894, chief customs official in Linz and he retired in
1895. He was described by his colleagues as "rigid, precise even pedantic" or "unsympathetic, inaccessible
and hard to work with." But he was hard working and a man of duty and fairness who led his life indifferent to
people's gossips and to the narrow-mindedness of rural XIXth century Austria.Rumor has it that he even
bought the coffin of his first wife while she was not yet dead.
The exact origins of how Alois Hiedler's name evolved into Alois Hitler are strange: in
1876, when he was 39, Alois, now a customs official in the Austrian service, probably
at the request of Johann Nepomuk, succeeded in persuading the Rev. Zahnschirm of
the parish of Döllersheim (Austria) that Johann Georg Hiedler had expressed the
desire to legitimize the boy. The alleged father was then dead since 1854 but Alois
produced three witnesses including Johann Nepomuk to testify the sincerity of this
desire and the priest, although reluctantly, consented to have the birth records
altered. In the old register, under the entry of 7 June 1837, the parish priest was
persuaded to change the mention "illegitimate" into the name of Johann Georg
Hiedler - accidently misspelling it -or at the request of Alois- writing down the name
of Johann Georg Hitler in the process. Alois Shickelgruber was henceforth Alois
Hitler and as soon as 1877 was thus mentioned in the records of the ministry of
finance, its employer. The name Hiedler is supposed to be from Czech origin and
could be derived from Hidlar. The village and the parish of Dollersheim were
successively destroyed by the Nazis after the invasion of Austria and the whole place
became a training field for the army.
In 1873 he married a much older woman named Anna Glass-Hoerer (1822-1883) whose father was a high ranking
custom agent. In 1888, after the death of Johann Nepomuk Hiedler, he bought a farm in Hafeld, near Linz, with the
money he got from the Will of Nepomuk who would have put him on his Will to the condition that Alois took his
name and dropped the ridiculous Schickelgruber. In 1892, he sold the farm for 7,000 Kr. and moved the family to
Lambach, between Linz and Salzburg. Alois retired in 1895 with an annual pension of 2420 Kr. Never a "Hiedler"
had done so well in life. In 1898 Alois bought a house in Leonding near Linz where the family settled until his death
in 1903. Although his job with the customs did not make Alois Hitler rich or even wealthy, he gained a relative
wealth as an inspector. Hitler's family lived in modest circumstances but without money embarassment.
|Braunau on the Inn present days
|Klara Hitler, born Klara
Pölzl (August 12, 1860
- December 21, 1907),
was the mother of Adolf
Hitler. She was the
daughter of Johann
Pölzl and Johanna
Hiedler, and was born
in the village of Spital,
in the former Austro
Hungarian Empire, at
house #37, right next
door to the house
where her future
husband Alois Hitler
grew up under the care
of her grandfather.
Alois Schicklgruber-Hitler's was broad-shouldered,
bullet-headed, ramrod straight in his resplendent customs
uniform, his thick mustache curled in the style of Emperor Franz
Josef. He was a passionate beekeeper and a rabid womanizer
who did not care too much about the rumors arised by his
philanderings. He loved Austria, hated Prussia and resented the
loss of the Austrian-Prussian war of the 1860s and longed after
a revenge. He became with the year anticleric on the ground that
the Church had reactionary views about education. His son Adolf
will take the very reverse position probably by defiance. His love
life was hectic, the sort of love life one could then get in the inns
where he lived during his slow ascent up the bureaucratic
ladder. He had a succession of wives, mistresses becoming
wives : his first marriage in 1873 was to Anna Glassl-Hoerer,
who was 14 years his senior. The marriage was childless and
not a happy one : Alois started an affair with Franziska
Matzelsberger (1861-1884), a maid employed in the Pommer Inn
where the couple was living and they had a bastard son Alois Jr.
born in 1882. Tired of his infidelities and sick, Anna filed for
divorce and obtained a decree in 1880 ; she died of tuberculosis
Alois was considered by his contemporaries as "master at home and independent abroad."
But this did not prevent him to marry Anna Glassl in consideration of her father's job as a
customs Agent. Eventually Alois ended up taking over her father's position. Immediately after
Anna's death in 1883, Alois married Franziska, who had delivered a child in 1882 and whom
Alois immediately recognized as his son. The infant was named Alois Jr. (1882-1956). This
child was a source of troubles for his authoritarian father and at the tender age of 13, he left
home for Linz where his father got him a job as waiter in a inn ; he never came back home.
Alois Jr. wanted to be an engineer but he said later that his stepmother, Klara, Adolf's
mother, convinced her husband to keep his money for Adolf because she wanted Adolf to be
an engineer. In his Memoirs, he complained of severe beatings and even whipping.
Alois Hitler married his once related niece
In 1883, Alois Sr. and Franziska had another child, a girl named Angela (1883-1949) but then
Franzika died the year after of tuberculosis aged 23. Upon the death of Franziska, Klara Poelzl
(1860-1907) -who had years before lived with Alois and Anna Glassl as an adopted child
and/or a young mistress- came back to Alois's house as a maid-mistress-stepmother to look
after the children, Alois and Angela, who were still toddlers. Klara was nothing else than the
grand-daughter of Johann Nepomuk Hiedler, Alois's uncle, his alledged father's brother and
therefore Klara referred to her husband as "uncle". Actually if the technicalities of Alois 's
birth are correct, Klara was Alois's once related niece.
Although 23 years younger than Alois Sr., Klara accepted Alois's marriage proposal after a
special Papal dispensation was given by the Holy See in January 1885 whereas Klara was
already very much pregnant. Their somewhat incestuous marriage produced two sons
Gustav (1885-1887) and Otto (d. after birth) who died in infancy, in 1886 a girl named Ida who
passed away in 1888. In 1889 the infamous Adolf who was born in Braunau, a small village of
3,500 people. Later on Adolf was followed by a boy called Edmund (1891) who died in 1900
and a girl named Paula (1896-1960).
It is worthwhile to note that Adolf Hitler was somehow in-bred. The union of Alois Sr. and
Klara was not the first to produce a generation of in-bred people within the Hitler or Hiedler
family. One might be entitled to estimate that the lack of fresh blood might be the cause of
some of Hitler's shortcomings or deficiencies and, in any circumstance, of a lot of our
troubles during the XXth century.
|Alois Hitler Jr. born in
1882 was an eccentric
and unable would-be
entrepreneur who will do
nothing in life until his half
brother Adolf became
Chancellor. He then
opened a restaurant in
Munich that will become a
popular drinking hole for
Alois retired from the Customs in 1895 aged 58 with a pension of 2120 Austrian Kr/year. In 1898, he bought a house in
Leonding near Linz where both Klara and him are burried. He died in 1903 from pleurisy and Klara from breast cancer
on the 21st of December 1907. Adolf was then 18 years old and he left home forever nevermore to enjoy the intimacy
of family life. We should note that Adolf was extremely fond of his mother who spoiled him and favored him a lot,
sometimes to the point that Alois Jr. was jealous and resentful.
Controversial Memoirs of Mrs Alois Hitler Jr.
When Paula Hitler was questioned after the war by the Allies, she showed a
real affection for her brother although (once Chancelor) Hitler had asked her to
drop her family name to adopt the name of Paula Wolf. She said to the
American officer interviewing her that Hitler used to send her each year a free
ticket for Nazi Party Nuremberg rallies and financialy helped her in several
instances. Not very smart, Paula always secured menial jobs and died a total
recluse in 1960. Paula is the only member from the Hitler family whose grave
is adorned with the name Hitler. If we must believe the unfinished "Memoirs"
of Bridget Hitler published in Dallas in 1979 (1), Paula disliked her brother
Adolf. She said once that she would never again see her brother but she was
forced in the 30s to leave Austria and come to live in Germany where she was
looked after by Adolf who even bought her a small cottage.
As a good German, she probably refused after WW2 to say anything too bad
against her brother but the transcript of her interview showed a sincere
|Paula Hitler's grave in in the
Bergfriedhof in Berchtesgaden under
the name Paula Hitler.
Alois Jr. traveled to the British Isles, spent some years in Paris where he worked at the Ritz,
then back in London and eventually in Liverpool working as bartender, restaurant manager
and even small hotel owner. An addicted gambler, he was never successful. He married
irish-born Bridget Dowling in Ireland and as she was only 17 and had not the blessing from
her parents to marry an Austrian, they eloped to London and got married : nine months later,
in 1911, they had a son called William Patrick, legally a British citizen.
Alois and Bridget never get along well even over the name of this son, one calling him Willie,
the other one calling him Pat. Eventually, Alois left home in 1913, went back to Germany and
disappeared after WW1, even pretending that he was dead. Bridget got hold of him in the 20s
but they never got back together. After the accession of Adolf to the Chancellery, Alois used
the influence of his brother to open a successful cafe-restaurant in West-Berlin where la
crème de la crème nazi used to show off -even Leni Riefenstahl could be seen there- and
Alois managed to keep it running during the war. Their son got some banking job in Germany
thanks to Hitler but was unsatisfied with it and flew to the USA with his mother in 1939 where
they led an anti-Hitler campaign.
Historians justly felt that this book was only written with the aim of gaining some
favors from his famous half-brother whose star was rising in post-WWI Germany.
After WW2, Alois Jr. changed his name to Hiller and again tried to cash on the Hitler
name by selling to tourists pictures of Hitler signed with his ex-name. Alois Jr. was
not far from being a crook and in fact he hated his brother that he resented for
having been "a draft dodger in 1912 and a fake artist whose works were sheer
painted copies of existing pictures, even watercolored pictures".
In January 1939, William Patrick wrote an article for Look magazine headlined "Why I
hate my uncle" (see pic above) and a similar article for French newspaper Paris-Soir.
He tried to bank on his uncle's bad fame and was shown in many places villipending
uncle Adi. He died suddenly in November 1987 after picking up a bronchial infection.
William Patrick Hitler and his German wife, Phillis, decided that their grave, located in
a small cemetery on Long Island, would display only their first name and the
inscription "Rest in Peace". His mother Bridget lies there too.
Hitler's three grand nephews were all American-born and have always adopted, in
reaction to their father, a low profile attitude. No historian, publisher or journalist has
ever succeeded in luring them into publishing anything or even coming out of their
secluded life style.
|Pauila Hitler born in 1896 was
simple-minded and worked as a
secretary in a military hospital
The 2005 discovery of a journal
written by Paula Hitler showed
she was once engaged to Dr.
Erwin Jekelius, an Austrian
associated with crimes against
humanity during the Holocaust
as one of the Third Reich's most
notorious euthanasia doctors.
Hitler was against the marriage
and Jekelius was sent to the
Eastern front. He died in a
Soviet prison in 1952 while
serving a 25-year-sentence for
killing 4,000 civilians including
hundreds of children during the
Nazi Euthanasia Program.
|In 1944 William-Patrick managed to be accepted into the US Navy (see picture) where he
served as a paramedic until 1947. The name of his recruiting agent was Hess !!! After the
war, William set up a business analysing blood samples for hospitals and married a German
woman called Phyllis Jean-Jacques. Their three surviving sons, Alex, 55, Louis, 53 and Brian,
39, (a fourth one died in a car accident in 1980) are still living in total seclusion, under a
different identity and all childless by choice, in Long Island, New York.
An amicable boy with a generous soul
In 1930, Alois Jr. published a book titled "Adolf Hitler" (New York American), which has been
totally under estimated by Historians. In his book, Alois, Jr., depicted Hitler as an "amicable
boy with a generous soul".
Frankly, one can wonder what they would have to tell us : after all they are as complete strangers
to the dramas occasioned by Nazism as any other young American born during or after WWII. In
1999, English journalist David Gardner found them in their retreat but they refused to talk to him.
Earlier in their life,they changed their name to Hiller and made the oath to have no descendance
in order to let the name Hitler go extinct. It was a stupid idea because anybody can check that
there are still at least five people carrying this name in the USA (one in IL., one in OH., one in NC
and 2 in WI.).
As for Angela Hitler, Hitler's half-sister, she enjoyed sustained and amicable relations with her
brother during their childhood. At some stage however in 1911 she had to go to Court to obtain
that Hitler relinquished to her his orphan pension as she was in charge of the younger Paula.
Before Hitler's accession to power, in 1929, she joined him in Munich to tend his household and
look after him. She became a totally subservient housemaid, devoted to her brother and always
sided with Hitler even when he was in conflict with one of her children, Leo, Angelika or Elfriede.
They fell out in 1936 under the fallacious pretext that she had plotted with Goering to buy from a
peasant a piece of land adjacent to Hitler's house in Berchtesgaden; a mean spirited incident that
tells a lot about Hitler's devious character. After that, Adolf and Angela's relationship would
slowly deteriorated and then irretrievably be broken forever.
Tragedy in the in-bred family
Angela eventually married in Dresden a Pr. Hamitsch and stopped seeing her brother. However,
Angela's first marriage had produced a girl called Angelika (1908-1931), nicknamed Geli by Hitler,
with whom he fell in love. The uncle and the niece may have had a love affair but it is sure that
Hitler's rabid jealousy played a leading role in pushing the tender Geli to desperation and officially
to suicide. She was caught red-hand in a flirt with Emil Maurice, Hitler's chauffeur and Hitler was
so furious that he fired his chauffeur and locked Geli up.
|Hitler and his half sister Angela
Raubal at Berchtesgaden before
In 1931, leery of the seclusion in which Hitler held her, Geli officially took her own
life. Suicide was then declared to be the cause of the death but many historians
have raised their doubts on this issue: Hitler was excessively jealous of her and
of the attachment she had shown for Hitler's chauffeur, Emil Maurice. Emil was a
handsome Huguenot of French descent who knew how to fast talk pretty women
(see picture below Maurice standing next to Hitler).
Some maintain that she was pregnant from a Jewish artist and that she wanted
to go back to Vienna to deliver the baby and marry him which was refused by
uncle-lover Adolf. Others just underline that she wanted to be free and go back to
Vienna to resume her singing career.
Such are the main traits of Hitler's family life. It is no small wonder that with this
background the very banal Hilter family will produce one of the biggest tyrants of
all time. Yet the Hilter family totally conforms to its XIXth century
contemporaries; a family where love and affection matter as much as in any
other family of the time, whose family head, the father, is an authoritarian figure:
a father torn between his duties and his affection but in any circumstances a
father barely prone to any compromise. In the case of Hitler's father, Alois Sr.
was addicted to some very sadistic penchants or, to say the least, to some
violence, as well.
In the end, Hitler is the son of an old man : Alois Sr. was 52 years old when Hitler
was born. In some instances an aging father brings kindness and caring to the
rearing of a young child but, in the case of Adolf Hilter, it seems something of a
different nature took place during his younger days.
In Mein Kampf, Hitler will evoke as a fictional example the "tough moments of a
young boy who would follow the example he got in his childhood, the one from
his father. This is the father who would come home late, sometimes only God
knows when, he will beat, for a change, the poor creature who was the boy's
mother, will blaspheme God and the universe, and in the end the boy will be sent
to a reform school."
Many psychologists have concluded from this extract of Mein Kampf, that Hitler
was then referring to his own childhood and that he was plagued with lots of
beatings and thrashings. It is not sure. Alois's best friend, Josef Mayerhofer,
always said that "his bark was worse than his bite" and that "Alois never
physically abused his kids." However, the Hitler who wrote Mein Kampf was
writing for posterity and the German public and he went as far as indulging
himself in describing his father as the "dear old man" elsewhere in that book.
It is impossible to know where the truth stands with a man like Hitler: not only
because he lied like a used car dealer, but his whole life is barely propitious to
the emergence of any truth. Further more, Hitler wrote Mein Kampf when he was
still vying for power in post-war Germany and one can doubt that he purposedly
aimed to give the German people a negative image of his Austrian education,
background and family. Hitler in 1923 was a demagogue who knew too well the
force of a customized propaganda. But it seems certain that he eventually
disliked his father who wanted him to become a civil servant. That paternal
"bureaucratic" ambition, young Adolf -who always looked at himself as a great
artist- could not stomach it : it became the source of a virulent resentment and of
an attitude of reject that will change the young man's life and attitude.
One can be sure that encouraged in his ambitions, Hitler would have been a very
different man. Probably a rather mediocre architect whom the world would have
never heard of.
(1) Duckworth, Dallas Tx. (USA) 1979, ISBN 007156 1356 1
|Geli officially took her own life.
Suicide was then declared to be
the cause of the death but many
historians have raised their doubts
on this issue: Hitler was
excessively jealous of her and of
the attachment she had shown for
Hitler's chauffeur, Emil Maurice.
|Hitler and his chauffeur Emil
Maurice with whom Geli had a
romantic liaison. Hitler will fire
him but he will nevertheless
take part in the massacres of
the Night of the long knives