I have to confess that the the title is somewhat misleading because Hugo Gutmann was not a typewriter salesman as of yet when he recommended Hitler’s award of the Iron Cross First Class.
Hugo Gutmann was one of the 12,000 Jewish military who fought for Germany during WWI.
from 29 January to 31 August, 1918 Lt. Gutmann was Adolf Hitler’s commanding officer.
Hitler was awarded the Iron Cross, 1st Class, for his role as a messenger, running important information between units under fire. The decoration was given to Hitler on August 4th, 1918, by the regimental commander, Major von Tubeuf The 2 decorations Hitler only wore were his Iron Cross, and his Nazi Party Badge.
On 8 February 1919, Gutmann left the German Army, but still was registered army rolls as a reserve lieutenant. In 1933, he applied for and received his military pension – which had been protected, for all veterans including Jewish veterans ,by President Paul von Hindenburg. Despite the anti Jewish laws and losing his German citizenship Gutmann was allowed to keep his pension.
Around the time of the ‘Kristallnacht’ in autumn 1938, he was arrested by the Gestapo, but SS officers who know him and his relationship with Hitler had him released from custody.
But regardless this relationship, eventually his fate would have been the same as all other Jews in Germany and the occupied territories.
In 1939, Gutmann and his family moved to Belgium . In 1940 just prior to the invasion of the Low Countries,the Gutmanns immigrated to the United States. They initially settled in St. Louis where Hugo secured employment as a typewriter salesman. In the US he changed his name to Henry George Grant. He died in San Diego, California, on 22 June 1962. He was buried at Home of Peace Cemetery in San Diego.
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