This is SS Obersturmfuhrer Edmond Baumgartner. Kommandant of the SS penal facility at Dachau and later the main facility at Danzig.
I ran across him because in November of 2015 his helmet was discovered among the items in the estate of Former US army air corps Colonel Alton Moody. Moody had bought home a number of SS souvenirs; most likely obtained from SS facilities at Dachau in the summer of 1945.
The helmet is an early F.W.Quist produced double decal M35. Dome acceptance stamp dated 1938, Aluminum liner frame dated 1938, a Carl Tesch produced chinstrap dated 1938 and stamped by the SS acceptance office in 1938. Quadruple-dated, matching helmets are not often found. Rather incredible that this specimen remained undiscovered for 70 years.
I bought the helmet from the collector who found it and I quickly noticed the hand-written name, rank and Unit is the liner. “SS Ustuf Baumgartner Edm. 4/SS “DF”; 4th company, SS standarte “Der Fuhrer”. It’s quite unusual for a helmet to be so thoroughly ID’d by a previous owner; especially an Officer. It was sure that there would be some records able to be found among the surviving records of SS officers in the US national archive.
The US archive in Washington provided about 70 pages of documents concerning Baumgartner
Edmond Baumgartner was born on September 8, 1909 in Austria. Serving in a mountain troop regiment of the Austrian army from 1930 until he joined the SS in October, 1933 (SS number 139490) and became a NSDAP member in May of 1937.
Photos from Baumgartner’s race and resettlement file show his photos as well as that of his wife; Hannah Urch, a “volksdeutch” born 1915 in Kranichsfeld Yugoslavia (modern day Slovenia). Married in May of 1935; They had a daughter: Gudrun, born in December of that year. (it was a shotgun wedding)
At 6 foot 3 with a face like a Mafia Hitman (He looks like Luca Brazzi from “The Godfather”); Baumgartner seems like an intimidating fellow.
Baumgartner’s awards included the medal for the Austrian anschluss; March 2, 1939, the Sudenten medal February 3rd 1940; SS service medal June 28 1941 and the war service cross w/swords on september 1, 1942. These are not his actual awards; just illustrations of examples.
One of the more interesting entries in the Baumgartner files is the case of his conviction of negligence during the July 20 bomb plot. It seems that on the day of the assassination attempt during the furor; phone calls were flying round the Reich as various offices reported in to their superiors or were contacted to report. Baumgartner was not present in his office. The secretary was not able to answer as to his whereabouts; nor the whereabouts of Baumgartner’s adjutant; SS Ostuf Gottlieb Biedermann. Both officers were absent until the morning of July 21.
Baumgartner got 14 days house arrest and ended up being relieved of his position as Camp commandant. He ended up transferring to the Mountain troops in August 1944 and by war’s end he was with an armored unit; captured to the British at Radkersburg in March 1945.
Released from British internment He returned to Austria and joined the Police in Graz. When his association with the SS was discovered he was arrested. Various Legal difficulties continued through the mid 1950s and he became a factory worker.Through the late 60s early 70s he faced charges of murder while acting as Camp Kommandant back in Danzig. The court’s investigations was halted for lack of substantiating evidence in November 1971. Baumgartner died in Berlin in 1998 at the age of 89.