History: Deutsches Museum shows former Nazi encryption device, the so-called "Hitlermühle"

The origin of the Nazi encryption device "Key Device 41", also known as "Hitlermühle", was a secret for many decades - as was the life story of its inventor, Fritz Menzer.

History: Deutsches Museum shows former Nazi encryption device, the so-called "Hitlermühle"

The origin of the Nazi encryption device "Key Device 41", also known as "Hitlermühle", was a secret for many decades - as was the life story of its inventor, Fritz Menzer. A new series of films by the Deutsches Museum now shows that Menzer was also active after the Second World War. Filmmaker Robert Jahn said he played an important role in German and American cryptology at a press event on Tuesday.

In the seven episodes, it also becomes clear that the inventor Fritz Menzer kept the extent of his activity during the Second World War and in the post-war period a secret from even those closest to him. "I didn't know anything about it," said Menzer's daughter, Gudrun Jackson. At home, her father, who died in 2005, said nothing about his invention. "I still can't believe it today," Jackson said.

In 2017, hobby treasure hunters discovered one of the two "Hitlermühlen" mills that are now part of the Deutsches Museum exhibition in a forest south-east of Munich. "Without this find, we probably wouldn't be here today," said Gerrit Faust, spokesman for the Deutsches Museum. The idea for a film project was born, which should shed light on the creation of the machine and the life of its inventor. It is important to prepare the topic "without glorifying it, but also without keeping it secret," said Carola Dahlke, cryptology curator at the Deutsches Museum.

Deutsches Museum App Encryption machines in the Deutsches Museum Key device 41

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