Letter from a female bank manager, written just before the end of the war, in 1945.
In a report to her head office, the twenty year old manager of an Upper Bavarian district savings bank, explains what happened at her bank in late April 1945.
Reference: Cash desk, 30 April 1945
At the close of business on April 27th we had a closing balance of RM (Reichsmark) 128,817.65. Shortly after we closed that day, American troops marched through the town and entered the cash offices. They demanded that the safe was opened and only RM 2,923.82 remained. The missing RM 125,893.83 is due to the following:
In April 1945 the war was coming closer to our walls and on April 27, as the sun was going down, artillery fire began raining on the town. The Sparkasse building was hit hard. At 7:10 p.m the consulting room of our bank was struck by a bomb. Due to this unfortunate circumstance, it was possible for anybody to penetrate the interior of the Sparkasse easily.
The Sparkasse building is located on a busy street and only the street side of the building was hit. This made everyone, even the most uninformed, realise that this building must have been a bank, or a similar company. This may be the reason why the first American troops, which arrived on April 28 1945, paid great attention to the safe, which was already visible from the street. The front line soldiers forced the employees to open the steel safe.
At around mid day on April 28th America soldiers put pistols to a women and demanded that she open the safe. The employee did not have the keys, but told the soldiers that the two cashiers held them. Whilst this was happening, other soldiers were searching the other rooms. We noticed afterwards that a typewriter was missing. The American soldiers repeatedly threatened our employees with knives and pistols and the safe was eventually opened. Everyone was told to leave the room and for the rest of the day we were not able to see what the soldiers were doing. There were therefore no witnesses to what happened after the safe was opened. We do know however that the security clock was adjusted several times. The soldiers tried to force the security lockers open with pickaxes and hatchets, because the customers had the only keys. Many lockers were damaged but the one they did open was empty.
Many French and Polish troops accompanied the American soldiers during the last hours. They also made threats with pistols and similar things.
The local police station was officially still in charge and our caretaker informed them several times what the Americans were doing. Each time she was given the answer: "There's nothing we can do about it, the troops are doing the same thing elsewhere. No American military police, or responsible authority, could be found. The caretaker was also told by the police station that they too were not allowed to enter the cash office.
On 30th April 1945, when the majority of the American soldiers had left, we entered the Sparkasse, accompanied by the military policeman Bink. Only RM 2923.82 remained.
Quelle: Privatarchiv CVL