1939 Poland : A Military Autopsy

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By: Richard Edes Harrison    Pub. Fortune Magazine

Date: October 1939 - New York, NY  

Dimensions: 13.75 x 21.25 inches (35 x 54 cm)

This is a WWII era map depicting Poland and the month long invasion by the Nazis and Soviets that led to the partitioning of the country between the two nations. The map appeared in the October 1939 issue of Fortune Magazine.

The work consist of seven total maps, the largest of which presents a topography of Poland as well as its railroad lines, roads differentiating from "wretched" to "paved," and various cities noting their populations.

Surrounding this primary map are six smaller maps that track the advancement of the Nazis and Soviets from September 1st to September 29th. Text at the top left and right corners of the map dive into further detail of the events that unfolded throughout this time referencing each of the smaller maps along the way.

To this day, many historians see the invasion of Poland as the official start of WWII. The German invasion began on 1 September 1939, one week after the signing of the Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact between Germany and the Soviet Union. On 17 September, the Soviet Red Army invaded Eastern Poland, the territory beyond the Curzon Line that fell into the Soviet "sphere of influence" according to the secret protocol of the Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact; this rendered the Polish plan of defense obsolete and the country was taken soon thereafter.

Condition: Map is in A condition, with some faint browning of the paper along the edges. Unlike most other Fortune Magazine maps, this map was issued as one complete page and thus did not need any joining.   

Inventory #11470

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