Albert Speer, one of the most dubious personalities in German history. His complex nature is seen through his work, but also the way he presented himself. Albert Speer had a traumatic childhood but when his cunning intelligence and amazing work ethic were combined he saw himself become one the most relevant figures in the Third Reich. Albert Speer attended few speeches from Hitler before being overwhelmed by how strong and understanding the Nazi party was presented. Speer later joined the Nazi party on the 1st of March 1931, becoming the 474 481st member. Soon after joining Albert Speer met Karl Hanke, who was a essential part of the Nazi propaganda machine that expressed the Nazi beliefs and objectives. It is well known that Albert Speer’s rise to prominence was attributed heavily by good fortune and opportunity and would’ve never become Hitler’s “First architect of the Reich” without it.
Alberts Speers newly found friend Karl Hanke, gave him the opportunity to redesign Goebbels headquarters, based in Berlin. Speer described this moment as “the luckiest turning point in my life” as his design, colour scheme and quality of work proved to be a great success in the eyes of Goebbels and Hitler. This success allowed Speer to have numerous opportunities to redesign or create through his tireless work ethic and his architectural choices representing the Nazi ideology. Nuremberg rally, March 1933, Speer had been given the opportunity to design the “Victory of Faith” which of course was a huge success and gave Hitler further means to extend Speers creative talents. Speer was given a chance, after his success with the 1933 Nuremberg rally, to create and design what he called his ‘masterpiece’, the ‘Cathedral of light’ for the future Nuremberg rallies. Speer’s ‘Cathedral of light’ consisted of 130 anti-aircraft lights, spread evenly at 12 metre intervals and were all aimed at the sky to effectively create bars of lights around the audience.
The worldwide praise and propaganda, which was created throughout the rallies further increased Speers prominence within Germany but also throughout the world. Albert Speer had a close relationship to Hitler and unlimited access, further raising his status within the party and eventuate a path to Speer becoming the second most powerful man in Germany. The death of Fritz Todt on February 13th 1942, created a void within the Nazi war machine and Third Reich, in the form of an armaments minister. Hitler appointed Speer to the position as he could rely on him to do his job, but also because Hitler believed Speer would not break his trust.