“Treasure Trove: The Looting of the Third Reich” was written in the year 2000 after five years of thorough preparation. Major Charles E. Snyder, the author of the book, dedicated a lot of time to researching documentation about the acquisition of loot by the US GIs in the weeks following the end of World War II in Europe. Snyder conducted interviews with the soldiers who were present in the Obersalzberg at the time to trace the actions of key units such as the 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne, and others.
“Treasure Trove” primarily features some of the most notable pieces from the thousands of war booty items acquired by 1st Lieutenant D.C. Watts of the 506th PIR. Watts collected these in the area of the Obersalzberg, the Eagle’s Nest, Hitler’s Berghof, and nearby locations in the weeks following the end of WWII. Watts was an enthusiastic treasure hunter who prioritized items that his fellow hunters were usually interested in – documents, uniforms, silverware, etc.
As time went on, these pieces proved to be of much greater value than originally expected. Moreover, Watts also found a number of original Adolf Hitler watercolor paintings. Hitler had been collecting them in hopes of eventually displaying them in a museum in Vienna, Austria. In his book, Snyder describes Hitler’s paintings from Munich and Vienna in great detail and includes some color and black-and-white photographs of the said works.
The book includes hundreds of photographs of the items discussed by Snyder. They range from clothing pieces to kitchenware to paintings, among other things. The items were photographed in a Los Angeles area studio using three-color photography techniques. Snyder has an enormous collection of such photographs, but for this book, the most notable items were chosen based on their distinctive characteristics, history, value, and other factors.
For instance, many readers will likely recognize the representative Hallmarks and maker marks on many of these items. Take note of the monograms some of the objects have – these help researchers in tracing back the history of every object. The author made sure to include all of the most peculiar and unusual pieces, too, while including as wide a range of objects as it was possible to find.
The cover design and layout for “Treasure Trove” were done by a well-known graphic designer who focused on showcasing some of the most interesting treasures acquired by US GIs after WWII. The book was published with the help of a state-of-the-art dual-side multi-page press to ensure the high quality of the final product. Thus, the color photographs of the treasures provided in the book almost perfectly represent what the real items looked like.
With a total of 206 pages of narrative content and 32 additional pages of color photographs, “Treasure Trove” has been signed by its author, Major Charles E. Snyder, Jr., (USAF Retired). Many readers have already praised it as a great reference source. Experts from a reputable essay writing service reviews site who specialize in writing essays on WW2 have praised Snyder’s storytelling abilities while also acknowledging the author’s attention to detail and dedication to spreading the truth about WWII.
Snyder was born in Topeka, Kansas, in 1931. He attended high school in Silver Lake, Kansas, and in 1949 enrolled at Washburn College in Topeka. After graduating in 1953, Snyder was commissioned as a USAF officer and served in Korea and Vietnam among others. In 1974, Snyder retired as Major and spent the rest of his life living in Bowie, Maryland, with his wife, Bonnie. Snyder passed away on October 11, 2015.