How Hitler Hid out in Liverpool; LEADER: For Decades Rumours Have Circulated Linking Adolf Hitler with Liverpool. Now a New Book Insists This Is No Urban Myth! FELICITY NEWSON Reports
Byline: FELICITY NEWSON
JUST imagine the scene at Lime Street station - the belch of steam as the train drew in and out of the swirling mist the emergence of Adolf Hitler - shabby, 23 years old and yet to leave his bloody boot-print on history."
These words are fictional - from Beryl Bainbridge's novel Young Adolf, inspired by allegations that Hitler came to Liverpool by train to stay with his brother Alois.
And until now the jury has been out on the truth of the rumour - but for the first time the myth seems to have been substantiated.
Respected journalist David Gardner has established that Hitler's three surviving great nephews still live in the U.S. - and they believe their infamous uncle DID spend six months in Liverpool.
The brothers, the eldest of whom is named Alexander Adolf, are the sons of William Patrick Hitler, who was born at 102 Upper Stanhope Street in Toxteth in 1911.
Though they have changed their surnames, David Gardner tracked them down and established their belief that a journal written by their mother Brigid chronicling her years in Liverpool - including Adolf Hitler's visit - IS authentic.
Brigid's memoir explains how she met dashing Austrian Alois Hitler at the Dublin Horse Show in 1909 and eloped to London to marry him.
Alois opened a restaurant on Dale Street, Liverpool, before buying a boarding house on Parliament Street and then a hotel on Mount Pleasant. He then went bankrupt.
Just nine months and nine days after the wedding, Brigid gave birth to William Patrick, on March 12, 1911.
Brigid goes on to describe how from November 1912 to April, 1913, Adolf Hitler was an unwelcome guest in their Toxteth flat.
Alois used to send money to his sisters Angela and Paula and having begun working as a salesman in the safety razor business, he wanted to persuade Angela's husband Leo Raubal to join up with him.
He supposedly sent money to Vienna for Angela and Leo to visit to discuss the proposition. However when Brigid and Alois went to Lime Street to meet their guests, they found his half-brother Adolf on the platform instead!
Apparently Adolf had used the name of his younger brother Edmund, who had died aged two, to dodge military service - and fled to England when Viennese police discovered the ruse.
In her account Brigid says: "In Mein Kampf, Hitler claims he left Vienna in May, 1912, to go to Munich. However this was false.
Evidence shows he arrived in Munich a year later than he says.
"He rearranged the facts of his early life into a more presentable version. To mention his trip to England without a reason would have been awkward, and the reasons would not have made good publicity.
"As for feeling grateful for the refuge granted him, it just wasn't in his make-up.
"Adolf remained with us from November, 1912, to April, 1913, and a less interesting or prepossessing house guest I cannot imagine.
"At first he remained in his room, sleeping or lying on the sofa he used as a bed most of the time.
"I had an idea that he was ill, his colour was so bad and his eyes looked so peculiar.
"I found him weak and spineless, but curiously enough I think he preferred my society to that of my husband.
"He would often come and sit in my cosy little kitchen playing with my two-year-old baby, while I was preparing our meals.
"He used to spread maps out on tables or the floor and pore over them for hours. He would never hesitate to interrupt my housework to explain how Germany was going to take its rightful position in the world.
"Whenever I tried to get away he would shout. He would whip himself up into a rage and go on until hoarseness or some interruption stopped him."
Brigid even claims she was responsible for Adolf's trademark clipped moustache. At the time, she says in her journal, he sported a similar handlebar moustache to Alois - and she suggested he should trim off the ends. …