Youth around Hitler
, a Hoffmann picture book
Heinrich Hoffmann (October 12, 1885 in Fürth - December 11, 1957 in Munich) was a German photographer, who is best known for his numerous pictures of Adolf Hitler. He joined the NSDAP in 1920 and was chosen personally by its new leader Hitler as his official photographer. Hoffmann became a constant companion and close friend of Hitler's, and by 1945 had taken over 2.23 million photographs of the Führer . His photographs were published as postage stamps, postcards, posters, and picture books. It was at Hoffmann's suggestion that royalties were received from all uses of Hitler's image, even on stamps, which made both himself and Hitler very rich, although Hitler was already wealthy on royalties from Mein Kampf.
Hoffmann married Therese "Nelly" Baumann in 1911. A daughter, Henriette ("Henny") was born on February 3, 1913, followed by a son, Heinrich ("Heini") on October 24, 1916. Henriette became the wife of Reichsjugendführer Baldur von Schirach in 1932. Tragedy befell the Hoffmann family when Therese Hoffmann died a sudden and unexpected death in 1928.
During the Third Reich Hoffmann wrote many books on Hitler such as The Hitler Nobody Knows (1933) and Jugend um Hitler (1934). In 1938 Hoffmann wrote three books, Hitler in Italy, Hitler befreit Sudetenland, and Hitler in seiner Heimat. His last book, Das Antlitz des Führers, was written shortly before the outbreak of the Second World War.
On a personal note Hoffmann, and his second wife Erna, introduced Hitler to his Munich studio assistant Eva Braun, who would become Hitler's mistress and ultimately his wife on April 29, 1945 and partner in suicide the following day. In addition, Baldur von Schirach, the Reichsjugendführer (National Youth Leader), who provided introductions to many of the picture books, wed Hoffmann's daughter Henriette.
At the end of the war Hoffmann was tried and sentenced to four years for Nazi profiteering