A World Time Clock for the Dictator

Germany, April 1939: Political dignitaries paid tribute to Adolf Hitler, presenting opulent gifts on the occasion of this 50th birthday. The supreme representative of the “District of Württemberg-Hohenzollern” and leader of the regional branch of the Nazi party Wilhelm Murr, handed him a world clock. It had been made specifically for Hitler by the Kienzle Clock Factories. Now, just a few months ago, the German Clock Museum had the opportunity to acquire this ideologically controversial clock.

Its massive pedestal reminds of the architecture of Nazi party buildings. The rim is decorated with a garland of swastikas. Even the dial showing Berlin at the center of a map of the earth reflects fascist ideas, as the Nazis’ intention was to turn the German capital into the center of global power after conquering the world.

From 1955 until the company filed for bankruptcy in 1996, Kienzle offered this world clock in many different variants. All references to Nazism had been eliminated from the clock case, although Berlin was still displayed as the center of the world. 


World Clock, Kienzle Clock Factories, Schwenningen, 1939, Inv. 2020-025.