Emil Maurice

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Emil Maurice wearing the Blood Order.

Emil Maurice (January 19, 1897, WestermoorFebruary 6, 1972, Munich ), of partial Jewish ancestry, was an early member of the National Socialist German Worker's Party. A watchmaker, he was a close associate of Adolf Hitler with a personal friendship dating back to at least 1919. With the founding of the Sturmabteilung in 1920, Maurice became the first Oberster SA-Führer (Supreme SA Leader).

In 1923, Maurice also became the SA commander of the newly established Stabswache, a special SA company given the task of guarding Hitler at National Socialist parties and rallies. He was imprisoned with Hitler and Rudolf Hess at Lansberg after the failure of the Beer Hall Putsch.

In 1925, two years after the failed Beer Hall Putsch, Maurice and Hitler refounded the Stabswache as the Stosstrupp Adolf Hitler which was renamed, later that year, as the Schutzstaffel (SS). At that time, Hitler became SS Member nr. 1 and Emil Maurice became SS Member nr. 2. Maurice became an SS-Führer in the new organization, although the leadership of the SS was assumed by Julius Schreck, the first Reichsführer-SS. Maurice became Hitler's chauffeur. He reportedly had a brief relationship with Geli Raubal, Hitler's niece, and lost his job as Hitler's chauffeur.

When the SS was reorganized and began to expand in 1932, Maurice became a senior SS officer and would eventually be promoted to the rank SS-Oberführer. While Maurice never became a top commander of the SS his status as SS Member #2 effectively credited him as the actual founder of the organization. Heinrich Himmler, who ultimately would become the most recognized leader of the SS, held SS Member #168.

Maurice was with Hitler during the Night of the Long Knives.

After Himmler had become Reichsführer-SS, Maurice fell afoul of Himmler's racial purity rules for SS officers, when he had to submit details of his family history before he was allowed to marry. All SS officers had to prove racial purity back to 1750, and it turned out that Maurice had Jewish ancestry – Charles Maurice Schwartzenberger (1805–1896), the founder of Thalia Theater in Hamburg, was his great-grandfather.

Himmler recommended that Maurice be expelled from the SS, along with other members of his family. However, the Führer stood by his old friend. In a secret letter written on the 31.8.1935, Hitler compelled Himmler to make an exception for Maurice and his brothers, who were informally declared "Honorary Aryans" and allowed to stay in the SS. Despite his Jewish ancestry, and his relationship with Hitler's niece, Geli Rabaul, Maurice was first and foremost a loyal companion to Hitler.


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