A one-of-a-kind, gold-plated Walther PPK once belonging to Nazi officer Hermann Goering will be auctioned off by Rock Island Auction Company in September.
The Walther PPK, deemed the most historic Walther the auction site has ever had up for bid, is chambered in 7.65 mm auto. The pistol has just over a 3-inch barrel and features three piece ivory grip panels factory carved in a traditional Germanic oak leaf and acorn pattern inlayed on a gold-plated frame.
With the initials “HG” emblazoned on the left grip, the Walther also prominently showcases the Goering family crest. The crest was created by Hermann Goering himself after WWI. It features an armored fist holding a large ring with the words “Der Eiseme,” Goering’s nickname, which means “Iron One.”
Included with the Walther is a large ring worn by Goering at parties and a pair of cuff links, both have the Goering family seal and crest engraved into them.
With an estimated value between $250,000 and $400,000, the Walther PPK, cuff links and ring are to be auctioned off beginning Sept. 9. The auction closes a few days later on Sept. 11.
Goering, the man behind the pistol was born in 1893 in Rosenheim, Bavaria. The son of a judge, he entered the German army in 1914 as an Infantry Lieutenant. He was later transferred to the air force where he distinguished himself as an air ace with 22 downed Allied planes under his belt.
After World War I, Goering became a show flier and pilot in Denmark and Sweden. When the Nazi Party came calling in 1922 Goering jumped at the chance to head back onto the battlefield. Quickly rising in rank due to his powerful personality, Goering eventually claimed the accolades of Commander of the Luftwaffe, President of the Reichstag, Prime Minister of Russia and Hitler’s designated successor.
Goering was arrested by Allied forces in May 1945 and put on trial in Nuremberg for war crimes in 1946. He was charged and eventually found guilty of conspiracy to wage war, crimes against peace, war crimes and crimes against humanity. He was sentenced to die by hanging on Oct. 15, 1946.
Two hours before his designated execution, Goering committed suicide by cyanide pill in his Nuremberg cell.