CHILLING

'I Was Hitler's Secretary'

It began innocently enough. Christa Schroeder, a 22-year-old girl from Bavaria, moved to Munich in 1930 and began applying for jobs. She responded to an ad in a local paper, looking for a secretary. Little did she know it was for the Nazi Party. Because she was a good typist, she got the job. In a newly translated memoir, He Was My Chief: The Memoirs of Adolf Hiter’s Secretary, Schroeder chronicles her 12 years as Hitler’s right-hand woman. She recalls having Tea with the Führer, listening to stories about his childhood, and taking dictations from him. “It would certainly have been easier to have taken this dictation in shorthand but Hitler did not want this,” Schroeder wrote. “Apparently he felt himself as if on wings when he heard the rhythmic chatter of the typewriter keys.” Schroeder claims she was never a National Socialist, and joined only because it was required of all employees. Schroeder was eventually convicted as a war criminal and died in Munich in 1984.