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When they learn that Austria has been annexed into the Third Reich in the Anschluss, the couple return to their home, where a telegram awaits informing the Captain that he must report to the German Naval Headquarters in Bremerhaven to accept a commission in the German Navy. Strongly opposed to the Nazis and the Anschluss, the Captain tells his family they must leave Austria immediately. That night, as the von Trapp family attempt to leave, they are stopped by a group of Brownshirts waiting outside the villa. When questioned by Gauleiter Hans Zeller, the Captain maintains they are headed to the Salzburg Festival to perform. Zeller insists on escorting them to the festival, after which his men will accompany the Captain to Bremerhaven.
Later that night at the festival, during their final number, the von Trapp family slip away and seek shelter at the nearby abbey, where Mother Abbess hides them in the cemetery crypt. Brownshirts soon arrive and search the abbey, but the family is able to escape using the caretaker’s car. When the soldiers attempt to pursue, they discover their cars will not start as two nuns have removed parts of their engines. The next morning, after driving to the border, the von Trapp family make their way on foot across the mountains into Switzerland to freedom.
H/t Power Line
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