Rare, secret Nazi book left at La Grange Park library

LaGrange Park Public Library Director of Circulation Services Ursula Stanek, center, holds the original book with librarians at the Holocaust Museum in Washington, D.C.
August 17, 2012 9:56:13 AM PDT
A rare, historically significant book stamped "Secret!" from Nazi Germany has found its way to the Holocaust Museum in Washington, D.C. after it was left at La Grange Park Public Library.

The book, "1938-1941: Vier Jahre, Hermann-Göring-Werke," was placed in the library's drop box bin, and may have ended up in the trash had it not landed on the desk of librarian Ursula Stanek, who grew up in Germany, according to the library. She recognized the stamp which read, "Geheim!" -- German for "Secret!"-- and the letterhead of Nazi commander Hermann Göring.

A visit to the Holocaust Museum in Washington, D.C. helped her realize its importance. The book, which details the four-year setup of the industrial complex site in the town of Salzgitter, had been given to workers at the state-owned steel mills run by Göring during World War II.

"That's when it occurred to me that this book might have historical significance," Stanek said through a release. And, it ends up the book does. The Holocaust Museum only had a reprint -- until now. The rare book left in the La Grange Park Library's drop box became part of the collection at the Holocaust Museum.

The library would like to talk to the person who left the book.


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