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A museum display case is simply too small for some stories. That's why filmmaker Robert Jahn has teamed up with the Deutsches Museum to present the exciting search for Fritz Menzer, the inventor of the legendary cipher device 41, in a documentary film series that can now also be seen on the Deutsches Museum's website and YouTube channel.

A simple toolmaker from the Erzgebirge becomes a central figure in the Wehrmacht's cipher department - but what happened to Fritz Menzer after the war? With animated images by the Italian artist Cosimo Miorelli and previously unseen photos and documents, the secret life of Fritz Menzer is revealed clip by clip. The result is an entire film package about the cipher device 41 and its inventor.

“Like the biography of its inventor Fritz Menzer, the creation of cipher device 41 is a wonderful opportunity to shed light on the German history of the 20th century with all its facets, including all its dark sides.”
Robert Jahn, filmmaker

Trailer for Fritz Menzer – A secret life

A thrilling search for clues over the course of seven episodes – Trailer

Who was the man who invented the legendary cipher device 41? With animated images and never-before-seen photos and documents, the secret life of Fritz Menzer is revealed clip by clip.

Fritz Menzer – A secret life

Das Schlüsselgerät 41 mit deutliche Spuren vom Auffindeort im Waldboden.

Now the Enigma must die

Cipher device 41

The cipher device 41 was deployed towards the end of the war. Fritz Menzer, the inventor, had identified vulnerabilities in the Enigma cipher machine.

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