My Father’s Country by Wibke Bruhns is the story about her father Hans Georg Klamroth a German business man and Wehrmacht officer executed in 1944 for his part in the Stuaffenberg assassination attempt.
It’s also one of the most interesting books I’ve ever read.
Because the author was only 6 years old at the time of her fathers death, she only has letters, diaries, and the words of others to gain insight into her father’s life.
Fortunately for her, her family kept quite a record of itself. Besides the family history there are extensive diaries and letters for her to use.
Indeed the story of H.G. as he is commonly referred to, is an interesting. Being groomed for the family business, young H.G. serves in WW I, travels to America for work, gets married and has five kids, and becomes a member of the Nazi Party.
In defense of H.G. he doesn’t become a Nazi enthusiastically, but more out of a sense of utility. This may explain H.G.’s role in the assassination attempt.
Though his role is hard to explain and at best he was merely aware of the situation, because his son-in-law was one of the major planners, he himself had nothing to do with the attempt.
Still that complicity was enough to have him hanged.
Getting to know Hans Georg Klamroth along with his daughter the author, is a very unique experience. From the family history, through childhood and adulthood the journey is quite surreal. You of course know where it will end up, but you have to keep reading to find out what else happens and how it happens from the perspective of all involved.
The story of the Klamroth family is an interesting one and one of historical significance and an interesting look at life from the German families perspective through the first half of the 20th century. A must read.