Lake Tegernsee´s secret treasure

Authors: Cécile Prinzbach. No genre - BR - 2001 - 45 min

Spring 1945: The allies increase their air strikes on German towns and advance further into Europe. The war is as good as lost. In Munich, a young Swiss architect, who works for the Bavarian Administration for Palaces, Gardens and Lakes, decides to save priceless works of art before they are plundered or destroyed in bomb attacks. It is a dangerous undertaking, as removing works of art from museums is seen as defeatism, and every action which demonstrates a lack of belief in an ultimate German victory, is considered as high treason.

Tino Walz, who was 33 years-old at the time, sets off on a dangerous journey through Germany. He marks his overloaded Opel with the Swiss cross in order to protect himself from air strikes and street patrols. He eludes numerous controls by saying he is a courier from the Swiss Embassy. Without Tino Walz, an important collection of Dürer graphics, irreplaceable paintings by Ludwig Cranach and the Bavarian crown jewels would have been destroyed in bomb attacks.

Tino Walz is now 86 years old and tells his story for the first time ever.