A Rare Enigma three rotor Enciphering Machine circa 1942-44 13-1/2 x 11 x 6-1/4 in. (34.3 x 28 x 15.9 cm.)
Lot 230
A Rare Enigma three rotor Enciphering Machine Germany circa 1942-44
13-1/2 x 11 x 6-1/4 in. (34.3 x 28 x 15.9 cm.)
Sold for US$ 92,500 inc. premium
Auction Details
World War II
New York
5 Jun 2014 10:00 EDT

Auction 21651
Lot Details
A Rare Enigma three rotor Enciphering Machine Germany circa 1942-44
An enigma three rotor enciphering machine, with later enigma stamps on inner front panel, numbered 19993, in its original oak wooden box, with hinged front panel, standard QWERTY keyboard of 26 keys, white on black backgrounds, battery switch, ebonite plug board, reproduction set of instructions on interior of lid, lacking bulbs at upper lid, later version of the number added onto a plate in the interior of the lid.

This example of the standard three rotor enigma machine "Modell 1" was used principally by the army (Wehrmacht), and with its original oak case, probably made in the middle part of the war. By the end of the war the Luftwaffe machines which were also standard model 1's were being cased in Panzerholz, a metal wood laminate used because of wood shortages. The enigma machine had been adopted by the German military in the late 20s as their favored enciphering device. Alan Turing, the famous mathematician, had begun work on breaking the enigma codes back in 1936, joining Knox, Foss and others who had been working from the 1920s. In 1938 the French passed over two enigma instructions manuals, and in late 1939 polish work unraveled most of the deciphering into the army 3 rotors, but the naval and submarine 4,5 and up to 8 rotors machines took much longer to crack. Bletchley Park in the UK, was set up in the fall of 1939, continued this important work as the German military tried to add further complexity to the code

Without this intense mathematical research of the various enigma machines, and the unscrambling of every message sent by German military, the war would have been considerably longer, this work contributing significantly to the success of the allies.
13-1/2 x 11 x 6-1/4 in. (34.3 x 28 x 15.9 cm.)
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