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Rudolf Hess arrives in Scotland

Posted in Anniversary, World War 2 on Friday, 29 April 2011

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10 May marks the anniversary of the parachuting into Scotland in 1941 of Rudolf Hess, a prominent Nazi politician and Adolf Hitler’s deputy in the Nazi Party during the 1930s.

picture, Rudolf Hess, parachute, Scotland

Rudolf Hess, the deputy of the Nazi Party, parachutes into Scotland in 1941. Illustration by Angus McBride

On the eve of Germany’s planned war with the Soviet Union, Hess took off from Augsburg in a Messerschmitt Bf 110. Hitler ordered  squadron leaders to scramble fighters to stop him but Hess arrived over Renfrewshire, Scotland, and parachuted down to a farm near Eaglesham, breaking his ankle during the jump and being arrested by a farmer with a pitchfork.

He was subsequently installed in the Tower of London (the last political prisoner to be held there) in isolation. Hess proposed a peace treaty but his terms were refused. Instead, he was held in Wales until being tried at Nuremberg in 1945. He was then held at Spandau Prison until his death in 1987.

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