Nazi Treasure Train Identified – May Contain Charlottenburg Palace’s Amber Room

by Sankalan Baidya
Nazi Treasure Train

Many of us probably haven’t even heard of a room made of gold, amber and other precious stones. A room like that existed and was lost in time during World War II. Reportedly, the last people to have a hold of the room were the Nazis. They loaded the dismantled room in a train that was lost in tracks of time.

However, treasure hunters now claim that they have managed to identify the legendary treasure train of the Nazis, which supposedly not only contains the Amber Room but also contains a pile of other treasures (mostly money, precious stones and precious metals).

The treasure hunters who claim to have identified the train say that it lies in the long forgotten tunnels that were once used by the Nazis during WWII in the Polish mountains. Even Polish ministry has confirmed the location. It is now assumed that the legendary train contains the dismantled Amber Room that was built in Charlottenburg Palace back in 1700s. In today’s money, the room is estimated to have a worth of $385 million! That’s quite some money we are taking about.

A quick history of the Amber Room

In 1701, Prussian King Frederick I had the Amber Room installed at his home – the Charlottenburg Palace. Peter the Great – the then Tsar of Soviet Union (currently Russia) went for a state visit to Prussia and immediately noticed the room. To please Peter, Frederick I gifted the room to Peter in 1716. It was a simple act by Frederick to ensure that the anti-Sweden alliance between Soviet Union and Prussia remains intact.

Under Frederick I’s order, the room was dismantled and sent to Peter the Great in 18 boxes. The room was then installed at St. Petersburg’s Winter House and was put on display as the art collection of the Europeans. In 1755 however, the room was moved back to Charlottenburg Palace by order of Tsarina Elisabeth. The room remained peacefully at the palace until in 1941, the Nazis captured it and moved it to castle museum of Königsberg.

In the coming two years, the Amber Room was proudly displayed as the museum but Alfred Rohde, the director of the museum was asked by Nazi command to dismantle the room again as the war was not in favor of Nazi Germany. The room was indeed dismantled and shortly after that, the Königsberg castle museum was reduced to rubbles by Allied bombings. That’s when the Amber Room was lost in time. No one was able to track its whereabouts.

The Treasure Train Story

It is said that threatened by the advancing Red Army of the Soviet Union, Nazis gathered whatever treasure they could and put in on a train, including the dismantled Amber Room and hid the train somewhere. They hoped that once the war ended, the treasure hidden in the train can be salvaged and used a new post-war life. That didn’t really happen and the legendary treasure train of the Nazis simple vanished in time.

Polish Government Speaks

Commenting on the identified train, officials of Polish government say that they are not really sure about the contents of the train. Conservation vice minister Piotr Zuchowski, according to Yahoo News, said to Radio Jedynka of Poland that the train is possibly a military train with weapons cache, wartime documents and even possibly some treasure like art work, jewelry etc. The Ministry did make an announcement on 29th August that the train may possibly contain the Amber Room of Charlottenburg Palace.

How Was the Nazi Treasure Train Found?

Let us make one thing clear that though we are calling it as Nazi Treasure Train, we cannot say for sure that this train is that legendary Nazi Train. Anyway, assuming that it indeed is what everyone thinks of it to be, its identification was not a result of hard work. In fact, according to Culture Ministry of Poland, someone on deathbed confessed to two men about its location. Of the two men, one is German and the other is a Pole. The name of the two men have not been disclosed because of security reasons.

According to reports of The Telegraph, the two treasure hunters eventually tracked down the train the long forgotten tunnels. They identified an armored train – 100 feet long, standing silent in the tunnels. As soon as the found the train, they reported their finding to Polish government and submitted their claims. According to Polish law, treasure hunters are entitled to get 10% of the hunted treasure while the government will retain the remaining 90%.

Once the claims were made by the two treasure hunters, the government of Poland made use of ground-penetrating radar and confirmed that indeed a train is stationed there in those tunnels. Though the exact location of the train has not been revealed, it is said that the train stands in an underground tunnel that the Nazis built next to a 4 kilometer long track stretch on Wroclaw-Walbrzych line of Polish State Railways. Officials think that the place might be booby-trapped or may be riddled with mines and explosives. Fire Brigade, Police and Army – all will be put to work to carry out the excavation of the legendary Nazi Treasure Train.

Nazi Treasure Train
A segment of an underground tunnel that was built by the Nazis under Poland’s Ksiaz Castle. This tunnel was part of Riese Project of Nazis.
Nazi Treasure Train
The original Amber Room that was photographed in 1931.
Nazi Treasure Train
One segment of the Amber Room reconstructed.

Sources: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7

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