Bartels was close to Heinrich Himmler, who put Bartels to work on his pet project of rebuilding castles, and as such the Reichsführer-SS gave Bartels in June 1942 the rank of SS-Standartenführer. In this capacity it was Bartels who redesigned Wewelsburg as both the SS school and host of meetings of the leadership. Bartels was attached to the Wewelsburg Office, headed by Standartenführer Siegfried Albert Taubert, from 1934 to 1937. Bartels designs made liberal of the Black Sun occult symbol, specifically on the floor of the Marble Hall and as such helped to promote its later use by neo-Nazis and Nazi mystics. Slave laborers attached to Concentration camp Niederhagen built his villa there. He also redesigned the official residence of Joseph Goebbels after the propaganda minister had declared himself unsatisfied with the original plans designed by Albert Speer.
- Jonathan Petropoulos, Art As Politics in the Third Reich, UNC Press Books, 1999, p. 172
- Heinz Höhne, The Order of the Death's Head: The Story of Hitler's SS, Penguin Books, 2000, p. 153
- Avner Falk, Anti-semitism: A History and Psychoanalysis of Contemporary Hatred, ABC-CLIO, 2008, p. 141
- Viktor Reimann (translated by Stephen Wendt), The Man Who Created Hitler: Joseph Goebbels, William Kimber, 1977, p. 222
- Frank Uekötter, The Green and the Brown: A History of Conservation in Nazi Germany, Cambridge University Press, 2006, p. 75
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