With InstaRead Chapter-by-Chapter Summaries, you can get the essence of a book in 30 minutes or . We read every chapter and summarize it in one or two paragraphs so you can get the information contained in the book at a much faster rate. This is an InstaRead Summary of The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History by Robert Edsel with Bret Witter. Below is a preview of the earlier sections of the summary: Section One: The Mission The Monuments Men The Monuments Men were a group of men and women from multiple nations who worked for the newly created Monuments, Fine Arts, and Archives, or MFAA, to save works of art, monuments, and archives from the ravages of war.
This was the first time in history that a special division of the military was tasked with such a responsibility. Most of the men and women who worked for MFAA had careers in art or history before their military service.
Chapter 1: Out of Germany Heinz ‘Harry’ Ludwig Chaim Ettlinger was born in Karlsruhe, Germany in 1925. The Ettlinger family had settled in Kalrsruhe in the 1700s. In 1850, the Ettlinger family opened a clothing store, called Gebruder Ettlinger, that flourished until the 1930s. The store went bankrupt due to a ban on Jewish owned businesses. Unable to work or provide for the family, Harry’s parents decided to immigrate to Switzerland. Their applications were refused on several occasions until finally the Ettlingers were given permission to immigrate to the United States. They initially planned to leave Karlsruhe in January 1939 after young Harry’s bar mitzvah, but moved up the date of both their departure and the bar mitzvah as the threat of war loomed. The family left Germany in October 1938, just two months before Kristallnacht, the Night of Broken Glass, that saw the destruction of thousands of Jewish businesses and synagogues.
That same night, the men of Karlsruhe, including Harry’s grandfather, were rounded up and sent to Dachau, a nearby internment camp. Chapter 2: Hitler’s Dream Hitler, who had been an aspiring artist in his youth, wanted to build a cultural center in Germany much like the one in Florence, Italy.
This German cultural center would feature a museum showing the finest in Germanic art. It would be located in Linz, Austria, Hitler’s adopted hometown. Hitler imagined this cultural center as a monument to himself that would be similar to the monument to Charlemagne in Aachen. For this purpose, Hitler gave orders as his army conquered many European nations to confiscate works of art that had any Germanic connection, both from museums and private collections.