Hitler’s Wealth of Royalties and Unpaid Taxes

Like that of many fascist leaders and dictators, Hitler’s wealth was not earned by entirely honest means. The Nazi leader amassed a great deal of money by the time of his suicide at the end of the Second World War, and he largely did it through the abuse of his power. The majority of Hitler’s wealth was gained by charging royalties for his image and neglecting to pay taxes on the income.

The leader of the Third Reich accrued something to the tune of nearly $3 million (when translating to United States currency) in unpaid income taxes, and possibly even more. This amount only takes into account the money he made by charging for the use of his image. This increased Hitler’s wealth a great deal, and it was already fairly high. His image was practically everywhere during the Second World War, even on German postage stamps. Not only did he charge for his image, but he also gained money from his numerous public appearances.

He attempted to hide his dishonest fortune when making out his will, but this is precisely how his tax evasion was discovered. Herman Rothman, a Jewish British Intelligence agent, read over the Fuhrer’s will and discovered some discrepancies that keyed him into Hitler’s wealth. Not only did Hitler save an enormous bundle through tax evasion during the war, but he had already been engaging in such practices before he rose to power. This was further increased by the money made from use of his image, public appearance, and copies of his book, Mein Kampf.

By the time of his death, the Fuhrer may have been worth a total of well over $5 billion in American currency. Raking in Reichsmarks as the result of his business acumen and refusal to pay back taxes, Hitler’s wealth grew to the point that it could arguably still be claimed by relatives today. It becomes apparent from the evidence that the Fuhrer was a man who was very much in love with his fortune, and was not willing to sacrifice a penny of it for anything, the Mail Online reports.

Hitler’s wealth was by far greater than the integrity he demonstrated in accumulating it. He was arrogant in the proliferation of his own image and evasive of his own nation’s tax policy, adding to an already great fortune. While he may have attempted to keep the exact size of his fortune a secret, the widespread Nazi occupation of Europe lessens any amount of shock from the discovery that Hitler’s wealth was largely earned through unjust means.

Ian Harvey

Ian Harvey is one of the authors writing for WAR HISTORY ONLINE