The photos, of course, have been seared into history — Hitler’s henchmen in the dock at Nuremberg.
And Luther Gulick was there (although they misspelled his name).
Here, found in Gulick’s World War II files, is a seating chart of the trial.
For five days in July, 1946, Gulick sat in Courtroom 600 in the Palace of Justice — the only major building in the medieval Nazi showcase that had not been bombed into rubble — taking part in the International Military Tribunal that sought justice for Germany’s numberless victims and innovated the prosecution of crimes against humanity.
This month marks the 70th anniversary of the court’s convening.
Nine days later, on Oct. 18, 1945, the Allies made the charges official, indicting 24 Nazi leaders.
The following month, with the number of major defendants now at 20, the trial opened.
Gulick had played a significant role in the Allied victory, serving on Roosevelt’s War Production Board and an alphabet soup of other defense and relief agencies.
Most important, perhaps, his work as a member of the Brownlow Committee in the 1930s had been instrumental in reorganizing the executive branch, creating the modern office of the Presidency that proved so vital in reversing the Great Depression and winning the war.
So it stands to reason Gulick would turn up in Nuremberg. But it was not his first trip to defeated Germany.
In July 1945, he traveled to Potsdam with President Truman and envoy Edwin Pauley to meet Stalin and Churchill to hammer out the details of German surrender and reparations.
He preserved many mementos of his visit.
He had even taken a souvenir from Der Fuehrer’s office itself.
So what was Gulick doing in Nuremberg?
A grisly mission. Supreme Court Associate Justice and Chief Prosecutor Robert H. Jackson had asked Gulick to examine and survey the more than 20,000 exhibits of evidence against Nazi leaders. His account sums up the horrors of the Holocaust.
He cited a report, evidently to Heinrich Himmler on the “Elimination of the Jews from Warsaw” including daily “progress” reports of thousands of Jews “disposed of” — documented in some cases by photos of corpses.
He found medical studies of grotesque human experiments, and documents and photos of a human “soap factory” with victims beheaded and scalped for their hair.
“Another exhibit is a lampshade of tatooed human skin.” And “a chemically shrunken head, mounted on a slab or mahogany” from the home of a concentration camp commandant.
Interviews with some of the defendants, Gulick concluded, found some “crafty and smart” but others “extremely stupid.”
Particularly shocking, he said, was “the casual callous every-day nature of the routine reports” documenting the atrocities “and the calm way all of the prisoners admit the facts and their own participation in the system but think they have no responsibility in the matter.”
The Judgment at Nuremberg on Oct. 1, 1946, acquitted three. Four got 10 to 20 years. Three got life. And 12 were sentenced to death. Goering killed himself with cyanide before he could be hanged. Martin Bormann, condemned in absentia, was never captured but remains later identified as his confirmed his death. The remaining 10 went to the gallows on Oct. 16, 1946.