tv Avenue of Spies CSPAN September 12, 2015 5:00pm-6:01pm EDT
story of the jacksons, and american family who aided the french resistance and nazi-occupied paris. he lived on avenue foch in paris. they were deported to german prison camps one month before the allies liberated that part of france. the world war ii museum hosted this event. [speaking french] i didn't think there'd be fans of general de gaulle in the audience. i would like to thank jeremy collins -- where are you, jeremy? [applause] larry?re you, he is some whereabouts.
these gentlemen were my co-conspirators. alex kershaw: we actually walked along this beautiful avenue very latest night a couple of times during the world war ii museum victory in europe tour. i thought, wouldn't it be a great idea if i could persuade a new york publisher to pay me a certain amount of money to go back and get drunk 2-3 times every year? and it worked. unfortunately, i had to ask a write a book at the end of it. i want to read you a quick quote. i don't want this to be too much of a slideshow. i was fortunate in finding some remarkable images given to me by the last living hero of my book, phillip jackson, who is 89 years old today. he will see some images of him
later. i wanted to redo a quick section, a short section. i hate reading from books because people always fall asleep. this is really the theme of the book. it is by a very distinguished and brave french men. ledie.jean pierre >> we lived in shadows as soldiers of the night, but our lives were not dark. there were arrests, torture, and death for so many of our friends and comrades, and tragedy awaited all of us just around the corner. we did not live in or with tragedy. we were exhilarated by the challenge and the rightness of our cause. it was in many ways the worst of
times and in just as many ways, the best of times. the best is what we remember today. i think you can say that is the entire narrative of world war ii, memory serves us in many wonderful ways. it makes the horror more diminished as we go on. dr. sumner jackson, born in maine, poor childhood, worked in . quarry breaking rocks finally ended up working for a doctor as his chauffeur and the doctor encouraged him to go back to college. .e did so doctorme qualified as a
and massachusetts general hospital. this is him on the left. he joined as a volunteer the harvard medical unit in 1916, on his way to france to serve as a combat surgeon. this is another picture of dr. jackson, 1917. if you look at the back of the you look at the guy at the head of the table, operating, that is jackson. some people say that the woman beside him to his right is his future wife, coquette jackson. phillip jackson, their son, told
me that they fell in love while jackson was operating on doughboys inded the trenches. the first very long kiss was just off the picture. philip told me that it was a very long kiss. it is france, after all. she was a remarkable woman, very strong spirited, a fantastic and boasted that she be france's number one , who won 31r championships. had the miss woman. she was a very good tennis player. they were married in the 1920's.
for 10 years, she tried to get pregnant and it didn't work out. 1929, phillip jackson, their only son, was born at the american hospital in paris. at least a crate of champagne was trunk to celebrate his arrival because she was in her 30's. lip, a beautiful photograph. the thing to note about this photograph is the ravens behind them, these are railings at .umber 11, avenue foch this was taken in the front garden at 11 avenue foch. a very privileged upbringing,
but on the most exclusive street in paris. sumner started a private practice, specializing in urology and edit of treating hemingway, fitzgerald, the lost generation. -- that was actually taken on june oh each, eanaeu beach, one of the landing beaches on da. day. the gentleman on the left played an important role in saving philip's life. he taught philip to swim in the rough waters of the english channel. sumner was determined that philip would learn to box so he could defend himself.
sumner hired a professional boxer to give phillip lessons, wim had phillip learn to s in the english channel. this is the arc de triomphe here. you can see the jacksons at number 11, right at the beginning of the avenue foch. there were two entrances -- is theou go -- this address today. a friend of mine took this photograph. it is what is called a rez-de- chaussez. that is where he had a private medical practice. he made a lot of money because if you are an expert in urology, you would have to solve issues of venereal disease.
a lot of rich american businessman i came to paris and it ingood time, they had their pocketbook just in case. importantly, there is an exit to the left, and an affront entrance -- two entrances to a ground-floor apartment where, as people came and went all the time, to see dr. jackson. in june, 1940, sumner sent his son and toquette to the south of france as a not seize arrived in paris. nazis arrived in paris. he did not leave paris as parisians fled paris. in may, 1940, i will
be in paris with my artists in six weeks and he was. amazingly, he was, six weeks, almost to the day. this gentleman here is one of america's first spies. before the second world war, there was no foreign intelligence service. that was the job of people who worked for the state department. princeton graduate in 1929, a volunteer ambulance man volunteering in normandy during the blitzkrieg. he witnessed this huge, terrifying onslaught of armor and steel in the spring of 1940.
he was an ambulance driver. he was working for the americans and reporting the in practice -- impact. he found his way to paris in 1940, dropped off at the hotel bristol by none other than george kenneth. way to thend his american hospital of paris, where he went to the office of dr. sumner jackson, and said to .im, i need to hide for a while the theory is that he was being hunted by the gestapo, that they were on to him and knew he wasn't an ambulance driver, he was a spy. -- hoffman was interviewed and said that only me, sumnerhid jackson. he added that after a week, false papers were allowed to
have him get to the south of france, then spain, then back to the u.s. inwas sent to north africa 1942, and went on to have a cia.nguished career in the hide, jacksonm to took his first great risk of world war ii. oche, the most vicious and depraved and most cultured and malevolent of the germans in paris, they chose the nicest place to live, i am talking about the ff and the gestapo. when they came to avenue foch, named after the world war i french general, they literally
chose the nicest residences. the man -- the mansions owned by the rothschild family -- they all lived on avenue foch. by the fall of 1940, it was known by parisians as avenue boche because there were so many nasty gestapo officers living in the finest houses in paris. you will see that the arrow is pointing to number 72, that is helmutidence of he knochen. he is 37 years old. phd in medieval english literature, speaks four languages. as arived in disguise
military policeman because the seniors did not want these black bastards anywhere near power in paris. they had seen what they had done andarsaw and elsewhere, they wanted to have a very nice war, thank you very much, and occupy the most beautiful city in europe. they did not want men like this rising. taber he is that -- terrorizing. he is a nemesis of my book. i found him to be incredibly interesting. agent an intelligent involved in one of the great coups of counterintelligence during the early days of the second world war. extremely cultured, extremely sophisticated, really, highly functioning operator.
in the winter of 1940, the jacksons were wealthy. they had a country home enghien. smoker, snowed all of the time. they were cutting wood in the backyard. i actually went to the backyard one year ago and they were cutting the wood because of very cold winter in paris -- the coldest winter on record, over 100 days when the temperature went below freezing at night which is unbelievable when you think about it -- it is paris. phillip told me that he loved it wasotograph because one of the few occasions when he got to spend time with his dad, who lead hero-worshiped. his father was very busy and doing things like this bonded them.
, if you go on youtube you can find the newsreel for this image. it is a truly horrifying image. up here at the planes, when you think about what this means, it means the defeat of the black bastards, three of the most evil operators in nazi europe. heydrich, therdt architect of the holocaust. anybody that opposed him, his life mission was to kill, destroy, or deport them. to the right, you have helmut knochen, king of paris.
heydrich,is boss, just outside paris. on the left, you have general karl oberg, who arrived with heydrich to take control of the ss in france. toy got into a mercedes visit helmut knochen's favorite stay forhere heydrich a week. there, they planned the murder of french jews. they also are responsible for s.lling 90,000 resistance
heydrich, he is 38 years old here. what struck me about these men is that they are so young. 37 and 38, they have the future of entire civilian populations in their hand. heydrich is assassinated in progress three-week after this photo was taken. chen, dr. boneso in german. heydrich is his protector and mentor. there had been a nasty incident when knochen have blown up several synagogues and harrison made it look like french men have blown up the synagogues to
create a wave of anti-semitism. it was discovered by the senior commanders and they had him sent back to berlin. back to sent knochen paris. during the weeks that heydrich spends in paris, meeting various , they talked about what they would do in france. the plan was that the ss would take complete control of france. becausedrich was killed of the shuffling that went on with a revolving door of the senior command of the gestapo, knochen becomes head of the
gestapo in paris, the most powerful man in paris in the most powerful man within the gestapo -- the german secret police. under the control of ss general karl oberg. hospital, sumner jackson has been waging his own war against the nazis. he fortified -- he fortified several documents for pows so they did not have to return to prison camps, they went elsewhere. he became involved in a state line belonging to the liberation movement. document -- it is the escape and invasion report from a 19-year-old gunner who flew on one of those up there. magnificent, magnificent
machine. shot down in july, 1943. phillip jackson delivered it to huge airr and saw this battle above paris on bastille day, 1943. he finally made it back to england for months later, completing what was called a home run, around 300 americans managed to get back to england and made a home run. when he got back, he was interrogated for one week a british intelligence. been he reports having kept for three days at 11, avenue foch by dr. sumner jackson. foundnalty for aiding airmen was instant death. this is one documented example
of one of the airmen that sumner jackson helped. he was taken to the american hospital where he met sumner jackson, sumner jackson then took him back to his home on avenue foch. resistancee french becomes more active, it looks as if the war is turning against the germans. many communist and others in .rance joined the resistance incidences of bombing and assassination start to rise quite alarmingly. more than ever, even more gestapo and ss have set up headquarters on the avenue foch, waging an unrestricted war against the resistance. by 1940 three, the gestapo had only one mission, and that was to destroy all opposition to german rule.
ss, killings, they hired career criminals, emptied jails in paris, had gangs of assassins working for them, all designed to undermine the french resistance. ane, you have number 84, ex-policeman. very good at tracking down british agents. on the fifth floor, you have the creme de la creme of british intelligence. several members of the s.m.e. most british agents were captured by the gestapo and that is where you ended up, on the fifth floor of number 84 where they had torture chambers. you can notice the gestapo symbol all along the avenue foch here.
gentleman 1943, this lived just literally as a neighbor of jackson's. he grew up next to the family. in august, he walked out of his front door, took a step to the left, walked four yards, and knocked on the door of the jacksons. toquette invited him inside. he said, i belong to the resistance network. can we use your home as a dropbox for intelligence and a meeting place for resistance agents in paris. it is a perfect lace, it is a doctor's office. people come and go, there are two exits. he told me when i interviewed him that when he asked toquette
if he could use the house, she did not hesitate for a second. from the summer of 1943 until the summer of 1944, several high profile allied agents deposited information at 11 avenue foch. it was used as a dropbox, became an important part of the network that spread throughout france. instigators the main . she was the one that organized activities there. sumner was often busy at the hospital. this is a beautiful shot -- i wish i could make it bigger -- i really don't care because it is cartier shot. i shouldn't be using this, but anyway. it is taken from the stairwell at 72 avenue foch, knochen's
office after he left in a hurry. paris was liberated on the 25th , by the french second armored division and the fourth american infantry division that landed at utah beach. the french did not liberate themselves entirely. veterans from utah beach actually fought on the streets of paris. 25, the jacksons had been deported from france. betrayed exposed and , arrestedbefore d-day by the paramilitary police, taken to vichy, handed over to
the french gestapo, and the gestapo in the south of france and then split up. toquette was taken to paris, deported on august 18, 1944, literally a week before the americans in french and arrived. she could hear the sound of american artillery as she waited to be deported. were sentd sumner into germany to a concentration where theyor camp spent most of the winter of 1944 -1945. this is a picture of ravens broke, a female camp bruck, a bcl place. -- a bestial place. political prisoners, people who opposed nazis.
they were sent to ravenbruck. toquette was 58 when she arrived there. she and several other americans who were imprisoned with her as well as other french women clubbed together and became a tight-knit group and managed to survive the winter of 1944-1945. these women are shown wearing the uniform of the camp. this is quite unusual. most of the women in her group were forced to construct an january in december and wearing summer dresses. many of them died from hypothermia, disease, typhus. by the spring of 1945, toquette herself was admitted into the infirmary, seriously ill.
she was given a couple weeks to live. , 59 years old.e look at her face. breasts,chin to her thousands of scars from life, which she had for the rest of her life. 59 years 59 years old, 20 years older than anyone else who survived in her group. taken on april 29, 1945. she was rescued by the swedish red cross at the 11th hour. she and 200 other women were taken in white buses and escorted across the baltic. this is a shot of her taken from a moving film where she is coming off the boat looking into
the camera. phillip and his father were placed on a prison ship on the baltic. onre were three prison ships the fourth of may, 1945, that set out into the baltic. over 9000 concentration camp survivors. backip was aboard the seal -- sealbeck. there were almost 2500 people stuffed onto the boat the length of this building. conditions were horrendous. hundreds of people died in the three days he was aboard this prison ship. of may, 1945,
under orders to sink any ship in khe baltic, sank the sealbec and two other boats killing almost 9000 people. it is the greatest maritime disaster of world war ii. from his ship, only 250 people survived. he told me when he was in the hold of the ship, he climbed up adder becauser -- l he wanted fresh air. he was gagging. an old german guard took pity on him and said you can come onto the deck. saw the on the deck and typhoon, a beautiful plane, coming towards them. he saw a rocket fire. he was a brilliant mathematician, a very good engineer. he became a very accomplished engineer. he thought the angle of the rocket was slightly to the left. it is not going to hit me. he watched the rocket come down and it hit 50 yards away.
he saw three more rockets come, and they hit the ship. he managed to jump off the boat. he told me he spent up to five minutes as the ship sank looking for his father, trying to find some there -- sumner. sumner was in the hold. he did not live. phillip jumped into the baltic and had about a mile to swim to shore. the bestell you today thing that ever happened to him had someone father teach to swim in the english channel rather than swimming pool. he knew how to swim in open water. he was picked up by a craft, a german craft. they thought he was a german sailor. they recognized his head had been shaved. inmate,lized he was an
and they allowed him to stay on the boat. machine-gunned people from the beach. a killed as many of -- they killed as many of the people who got to the beach as they could. i should add, and this is what is disturbing about world war ii still today, the german civilians also went out on the and alsof the baltic killed these survivors. the rage, the madness, the terror, the beastie gallantly -- bestie allete --, was so intense towards the end of the war. this was phillip. he was lined up against the wall naked with 200 other survivors. gun.s mounted a machine he tells the story that as they were mounting the machine gun, they heard tank fire.
and british arrived a few minutes later. the ss being smart decided to scamper. that is how phillip jackson, age 17, survived. he was taken in by the british army and became a translator the summer of 1945. you can see the american star. with theas involved americans interrogating germans. he could speak german very well. finally, his mother, toquette, who had survived in paris, said, phillip, where are you? come home to paris, i want to be with you. she had lost the love of her life. she had a son. she wanted him to return. phillip told me he did not want to go back because going back would be two different -- would be to confront the loss of his father and what he went through. eventually, he went back.
phillip is a highly decorated veteran of the french resistance. you can be highly decorated simply because of the suffering you endured because you opposed not season -- naziism. you might not have made a difference in battle, but here -- a year in prison qualifies you as a member of the resistance. phillip on the right looks remarkably like his father. people have always commented to him he is the spitting image of his father. a bit of the back woodsman in maine is in him. he is testifying at a trial for the ss. nine men, all were hung after philips testimony. he pointed to each one of them, face them in court the mesh court, heaced them in
said i saw all of them do this and this. everyone he named was hung. these guys were not hung. knochen on the right, this is 1954 in paris. knochen ran the gestapo in france. he was directly responsible for the deportation of the jacksons. he was found guilty of war crimes by the french. the british had sentenced him to murdereforehand for the of troops in august of 1944. this is the first day of their trial in paris for crimes against humanity. both were sentenced to die. both were released 10 years later because of the cold war politics. we commuted, sadly i believe, we
commuted a lot of the sentences of convicted ss war criminals because we wanted to keep the germans happy. it was the cold war. we treated them with kid gloves. pardoned infinally 1968 by general degaulle, of all people. he went back to germany and worked in insurance and die a wealthy man in 2003 -- died a wealthy man in 2003. he said the greatest regret of his life is that he had been involved in the holocaust. but he did not know what was going to happen to the people he deported to the east. he had no knowledge of auschwitz. he knew nothing about that. but he was very sorry he was involved with the people that sent them somewhere else. very skilled, fabulous, to the
very end. also lived to see retirement in prosperous west germany. that is phillip, taken in 2014. you can see the blurred image behind him. that is where phillip lives today surrounded by other highly decorated veterans of not just the second world war but also into china -- indochina. any highly decorated french veteran gets to live there, which is where i interviewed him several times. that is the dome. under that dome is napoleon's tomb. he lives a stones throw from napoleon's tomb. at the risk of making you wince, this is me and phillip.
this is phillip's favorite restaurant. there are some people in tipsy inwho got quite that restaurant with me relatively recently. can you put your hands up, please, the criminals? [laughter] it is a restaurant called pasco. i expect to eat for free now forever for mentioning that. this is his favorite restaurant. i was very fortunate to spend a lot of time with phillip. proud ofand extremely his french heritage and american heritage. extremely proud he is the son of a guy from maine that risked it all and gave his life for the allied cause in world war ii, in a war that we do not know enough about, a private war, a disturbing more, a war in which a knock on the front door could mean your death at any moment.
thank you so much for being a wonderful audience. [applause] >> if there are questions, please raise your hand and i will come to you with a microphone. starting here with the lady to your left. >> how did toquette get in touch with phillip? there were no cellphones in those days. mr. kershaw: that is a great question. phillip's daughter who lives in boston, i became very good friends with her, she was kind of my liaison. she gave me a treasure trove of letters. there are some beautiful, heartbreaking letters written by toquette to phillip and phillip to his friends in paris. phillip in may of 1945 fox his mother and father -- thought
that his mother and father had been killed. he did not know toquette had survived ravensbruck. he writes to some friends in paris saying i am all alone, my parents died in the camps. he did not find out until june of 1945 that his mother was alive. she wrote, and he wrote to her immediately and paris. there is a beautiful letter from mainete to relatives in about jack, telling the family in maine what her husband was, who he was really. it is a really beautiful letter. it is heartbreaking. did the two germans, oberg and knochen, why didn't israel hunt them down?
were they not that important? were they not known? mr. kershaw: i think if i was french and jewish or french and patriotic and had served in the resistance, they would be top of my list. that is a good question. i don't know why they were not hunted down. i know both of them were very aware they were marked men. they were very afraid to be tried in france. when they were brought to france, they knew it was going to be very serious. that is a good question. he would has to -- you would have to ask the same of the entire german nuclear physicist program. what happened to them? they put a man on the moon, basically. there were political considerations. the cold war had begun in 1945. we shook hands and danced with the russians in april of 1945.
but that was the end of our so-called relationship. the cold war was really hotting 1946-1947, and we needed the cold war against communism in europe. west germany, we had to maintain that at all costs because without west germany, guess what? you don't have europe anymore. we did what we had to do to keep the germans happy, that included going easy on some of their senior ss officials. i think it is unforgivable. i am not a politician in the state department in 1947 trying to get the germans to allow us to put bases all over the country, you know. to your left again, alex. >> i have a comment and question.
we pronounce the name of the famous university in maine as burden -- bowden. you have an interesting group of books you have written. how do you select the subjects you write on and what you have in mind for your next book? mr. kershaw: that is a very good question. it is getting hard now, tragically, which is why the museum's mission is so important because we can no longer rely on meeting people that were in world war ii. it is getting harder to find people. i am very much about forming a relationship and the human side of the war. not so much interested in strategy and tactics. i'm very interested in the human experience. the books i have done have been based on interviews with people. this one, i was very lucky because i had phillip, who is my main source in the book. it is getting difficult.
i did meet a gentleman about guy. weeks ago, amazing in the second world war, he was a waste gunner. he is 93 years old. of the u.s.esident escape and evasion society. there were not many members because there were not many members who qualified in world war ii. these were guys who made what was called a home run. if you got shot down about berlin or brussels, making a home run meant you were ferried by the french resistance down the escape line i mentioned earlier in the new client over the pyrenees, went to spain, and got back to england. in his case, he made a home run and went to the base where he had taken off four months before. i'm fascinated by the story.
you have a fugitive. the gestapo were chasing these guys all the time. i worked out maybe 50 people he did not know had risk their lives to help him to get back home. there is a beauty in that. they were not 50-year-old french guys with pot bellies. the beautiful thing about it is they were usually young women. the guys in france had been deported to work or they were in the army. there were not many men around. you have these 19, 20-year-old americans trusting these women with their lives. sometimes once or twice a day. they were getting off the train and there was an 18-year-old girl there to follow. i'm fascinated by this. , in his plane, they were two guys that made home
runs, which is astonishing. that interests me because he is a life and a wonderful guy. he was caught twice by the gestapo and escaped twice. pyrenees with a pair of shoes one size too small in a summer suit in march at 9000 feet with blizzards. i'm kind of interested in that, you know. anyway, yes. >> to your right. >> thank you. do you happen to know why the jackson family was deported as opposed to execute it? -- executed? mr. kershaw: very good question. i think there was maybe an element of politics involved. sumner jackson was an important american citizen. he was well known. by that stage of the war, made ss officersa few
were smart. they knew the war was not going to end well for them. being directly responsible for executing the jacksons might have been difficult to explain later. it was a general policy, the ss and gestapo would deport illegal -- political prisoners. they were to disappear into the concentration camp system. phillip told me it would not have been profitable, it would not have maximized his human utility to be shot by the ss. they would rather have worked him to death because they get free labor. this is the mindset of knochen and his kind. you make shoot people, them work and then you shoot them. an amazing british agent was in ravensbruck, a superstar if you
are british. 24-year-old special agent. aboutis a great movie her. she was in ravensbruck. she was deported with toquette from paris in august of 1944. towards the end of the war, was taken out with three other british agents and shot in the back of the head. the ss deported people. but right at the end, they realized in the spring of 1945, they realized they did need to get rid of these people because if they testified in a war crimes trial, they would point the finger like philip kent and say it was helmut knochen. they kill them. many of the bravest british agents were killed literally days from the end of the war because the ss did not want them to point the finger. great question. >> to your far right. >> i'm interested in knowing how
did heher americans enable to escape. and also, is this going to be a movie? mr. kershaw: i would love it to be a movie because i'm tired of writing these books, you know. [laughter] mr. kershaw: it does not have to be a big caribbean island, just a beach would be fine. i'm not going to read another book ever. what was the better part of the question? how many? i don't know. the only one i could mail, i could find documentary proof for was joe man off -- manos. he is still alive. he lives in sacramento, california. i managed to ask enough questions -- i asked him five
times, did you stay at 11 avenue foch? he was a bit fused. i read his report and it says he did state at 11 avenue foch. i don't know how many. for me, the great challenge of this book and one i did not succeed in overcoming is that nothing was written down. you did not write anything down if you were in the resistance. that was rule number one. you never wrote a name down, you never talked to anybody about anybody else. everybody had a codename. the jacksons were ridiculously vulnerable because they stayed in the same place and were known as the jacksons. other people in the resistance made sure they had codenames and moved constantly. jackson never wrote anything down. he was a very smart guy. the escapehe helped
line. we do know joe manus was taken by people in that line to the american office, sat in his office and saw sumner jackson written on the wall. he described the jacksons to me as underground. told me when i interviewed him he would not be alive without him. he did not think he would live. to this day, he is extremely grateful the jacksons wrist theirlives -- risked lives to hide in their home on the most lethal street you could find yourself on in occupied europe. i think there were probably several, at least several, but joe manos is the only one i could actually document and interview. >> we have time for a few more questions. we will get to some over here. >> what happened to fill it -- phillip?
did he have a family of his own? mr. kershaw: he did. he has two daughters. i met both. barbara lives in paris. i went to lunch. phillip paid. i'm glad because the wine was quite nice. lorraine, his youngest -- oldest daughter lives just outside boston. she came over to the states in her late 20's. she's always sort of mystified by the american heritage she had, and came over in her late 20's and decided to stay. i think she has been here over 20 years now. she has got two sons. they are all very proud of their grandfather. me has become -- she told she felt something in her was american that she wanted to come and live here.
it is nice because he has got two daughters. one locally in paris he's a lot and then lorraine. lorraine was able to take the book to fill up about two weeks ago. i could not find a photograph, but i have a nice cheesy photograph of phillip with my book. enjoyed what were the 30 glorious years of postwar boom in france. he joined an engineering firm. death, theyher's had to leave 11 avenue foch. they could not afford to live there. they moved to the country home. his american diet -- his mother died in the american hospital. phillip worked for an engineering company. at 18, he joined as a draftsman, worked his way up to being vice as heent and has had,
told me, a very lucky life. he survived a concentration camp. he survived the sinking of a prison ship. he survived very serious skin cancer in the last 10 years. survived falling on his head from 20 feet up when he fell off , and is just very grateful to still be alive. i have one nice little story i just remembered. -- remember the gentleman let me see if i can find him. there you go. guy,guy is an amazing highly decorated member of the french resistance, recruited toquette. he was the jacksons neighbor all through his childhood. after the war, he never went
and saw to house get. he saw her that one time only when he walked into her front room and said, will you join the resistance? what he was saying is, will you put everything on the line? not just your life, not just your husband's life, but your 12-year-old son's life? guilt when they were arrested and felt terrible guilt because he felt responsible. it has been hit -- it had been his idea to go and ask them. i interviewed him two years ago. in the conversation, i said, you know phillip jackson is still life -- still alive? i realized he did not want to have any connection with the jacksons because he felt tremendous guilt.
he told me he felt tremendous guilt. he said i felt i could not face toquette after the war, i sent my father instead to go and tell her how sorry i was. toquette said you don't have to feel sorry because all of us were able to hold our heads high. we joined the resistance. we are very proud of that. a couple of weeks after i saw him, he went to see phillip for the first time. i don't know what they talked about, but i'm sure it was quite profound. he said to phillip i am very sorry your parents and you went through what you did, and i'm sorry your father died, it was my fault. phillip said of course it was not your fault. don't feel bad about it. as nintendo to this gentleman -- as an addendum to this gentleman, he is the last living survivor of the french
mountaineering party the client k-2 in 1950. the highest mountain climbed was in 1950 by the french. he is the last surviving member of the first team to climb the highest mountain in the world at that time. everest was 1953. he did not get all the way to the top. he was halfway up the mountain. he's a legend in france. he belongs to the team at concord beam -- that concord the most dangerous mountain in the world. one in three of the people that get to the top do not get to the bottom. he is an incredible guy. look at him. and took adiplomat lot of risks. can you see the
little red mark on his jacket? french, buttle and means so much to them. >> one last question in the middle, alex. >> where did you acquire the pictures of them, the jackson family? mr. kershaw: they are all from phillip. a very good friend of mine to this picture, john snowden, he has worked with me on most of my books. phillip pulled out all of his albums. we photographed them very because he would not, for obvious reasons, let me take the photographs. >> it is amazingly survived. -- it is amazing they survived. mr. kershaw: it is a treasure trove. i was very fortunate he allowed me to use so much of what he gave me.
thank you for being such a fantastic audience. [applause] >> you are watching american 48 hours of programming on american history every weekend on cspan3. follow us on twitter for information on our schedule of upcoming programs and to keep up with the latest history news. >> now, a roundtable of public historians and successes of remembering the civil war 150 years later and how it compared to earlier anniversary celebrations. they describe the changes in how parks have interpreted the civil war era over the years and challenges in engaging younger generations and minority groups. the emerging civil war blog hosted this event. it is about an hour and a half.
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