The carbon copy is a transcript of the closing speech by a German lawyer Dr Alfred Seidl (1911-1993) for Rudolf Hess (Rudolf Heß, 1894 –1987) a leading member of the Nazi Party in Nazi Germany, and the second official heir to Hitler’s position following Herman Göring, in case of the Fuhrer’’s death. Hess was one of the inventors of antisemitic laws, starting in the 1930s, that led to the holocaust shortly after.
In 1941, Hess was arrested after an airplane crash in Scotland in what appeared to be an self-directed unsuccessful flight allegedly with a goal to arrange peace talks with the Duke of Hamilton. He was imprisoned in Britain throughout the war until 1946, when he was sent to the Nuremberg trials. There he was given a life sentence for crimes against peace and conspiracy with other German leaders to commit crimes.
Unlike the rest of the accused at the Nuremberg trials Hess never participated in Word Was II due to his imprisonment in Great Britain.
On August 17, 1987, being the last imprisoned person at the Spandau Prison in Berlin, Hess, notorious for his decades-long uncooperative mood and isolation, committed suicide at the age of 93 at the prison’s library.
All contemporary carbon copies of original typescripts of any proceedings from the Nuremburg Trials are today very rare; they were made in only very small quantities exclusively for dissemination to court officers. Only a small number of examples are preserved in institutional collections worldwide, while examples of any kind only seldom appear on the market.