Rudolf Hess Crashed His Messerschmitt in Scotland

One of Hitler’s better-known lackeys, Rudolf Hess, was on his way to negotiate a cease-fire in 1941 when his plane ran out of fuel and went down. Now that a fuselage and accompanying letter have been put up for auction, the world has been informed of the true story. As it turns out, the Messerschmitt aircraft piloted by Rudolf Hess went down in Scotland and was quickly salvaged by farmworkers who maintained their secrecy for over seventy years.

The farmers who salvaged the plane did not know the identity of the man who had abandoned it shortly before crashing. They did the proper thing and had him taken away by authorities, but their actions regarding the plane that had almost claimed the life of Rudolf Hess were more questionable. Knowing that the Scottish Home Guard would have some interest in the aircraft, they were quick to hide as many pieces as possible. It was years before they were able to sell the parts.

One reason they might have waited so long to sell the parts of the plane that they had taken is that they believed the pilot to be of a much lower rank. They found out much later that the man who had given his name as Captain Albert Horn was in fact Rudolf Hess, a man who was heir to Hitler’s metaphorical throne. The plane’s engines promptly found their way to museums, namely the Imperial War Museum and London’s Royal Air Force Museum, The Telegraph reports.

The German deputy never got to his peace meeting, as he was imprisoned for four years following his capture. After being committed to life in prison for war crimes, he eventually committed suicide a few decades later. Now, the explanatory letter regarding the fuselage of Rupert Hess, as well as the scrap itself, is set to sell for approximately three thousand pounds at auction. They may fetch even more, however, given not only the rarity of the Messerschmitt but also the importance of the man who piloted it.

Rudolf Hess may have been on his way to end the war, though this cannot be made entirely certain. Given that he lied during his trial in 1945, nothing the man says can be fully accounted for without corroboration. Either way, he was an important figure during his time in history, and the plane that Rudolf Hess flew was of a highly sought-after sort which will likely garner high bids at auction.

Ian Harvey

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