Brother Karl Doberlein Translates Discovered Nazi Freemasonry Propoganda

In 2021 Brother Scott Graham and District 9 Deputy Paul A. Larson, both from Jefferson County Masonic Lodge No. 9 and Members of the Valley of Madison Scottish Rite, took on the task of cleaning and preserving documents and other artifacts that were located in the large walk in safe in the basement of the Wisconsin Masonic Center. 

There had been a water leak in the safe and repairs were being made to protect its contents. To this point some of the Masonic treasures that had been discovered were three original letters signed by President Harry Truman 33º, many old lodge registers dating back to the earliest Lodges in Wisconsin, and one other item that caught our attention: it was an original pamphlet, some 30 pages long, from the Office of NAZI Propaganda and obviously held some dark information based on the cover.

The information was a mystery to us because we could not translate it, we assumed that a Masonic Armed Service Member must have brought it home from the war in Germany, and we longed to find out what this terrible propaganda told about Freemasons as well as Jews and others that were persecuted by the Nazis. We asked around everywhere we could think of to find someone who spoke German, but no luck. It was made especially difficult since it was a high version of German, not exactly your conversational type German. We even contacted the local Universities and their foreign language departments but again no one was able to help us. Then, almost by accident, it was discovered that one of our own Lodge Brothers, Brother Karl Doberlein, spoke German so we asked him to take a look. At first we hoped he could maybe decipher a few of the words or just give us an idea what this historical document had hidden for so many years. 

After only a very short time Brother Doberlein returned to us a complete translation. A literal word for word transcript of what horrors this propaganda told. We were both extremely surprised and grateful to finally have some answers regarding this propaganda. Pictured at the top of this page, Brother Karl Doberlein (center) receives recognition for his exceptional efforts from Brother Scott Graham (right) and District 9 Deputy Paul A. Larson. 

It is a truly terrible topic, but history held this secret only for so long. It is a dark look into the past, but very important to study, so that it is never forgotten or ever repeated. We can’t thank Brother Doberlein enough for his incredible efforts. He is a very valuable member of our Lodge and has been a huge help in our work to discover the past.

By Brother Scott M. Graham; Photo by Brother Phil Graham