A series of photos have been released by LIFE.com that show off the decrepit bunker where Adolf Hitler and his wife Eva Braun killed themselves.
Many of these images weren’t published in a special edition of the magazine, which was released immediately after war in 1945. Photographer, William Vandivert, was the first Westerner who was granted access into the bunker, which was carved underneath the Reich Chancellery and was ultimately reduced to dust by Allied bombs.
Vandivert said of the images, “These pix were made in the dark with only a candle for illumination … our small party of four beat all rest of mob who came down about forty minutes after we got there.”
The pictures also show war correspondents looking at the sofa and examining the area where he the Führer and his wife killed themselves. It is believed that Hitler shot himself in the mouth with his service pistol.
Other never-before-seen images show Berlin in ruins, with Russian and Allied soldiers marching their way through the German city.
Vandivert, who died in 1992, also noted for LIFE, “Almost every famous building in Berlin is a shambles. In the centre of town GIs could walk for block and see no living thing, hear nothing but the stillness of death, smell nothing but the stench of death.”
Today, the LIFE website stated, “A few of those images are republished here; most of the pictures in this gallery, however, never appeared in LIFE. Taken together, they illuminate the surreal, disturbing universe Vandivert encountered in the bunker itself, and in the streets of the vanquished city beyond the bunker’s walls.”
You can check out the pictures below.