Who were the SS Helferinnen shown in the famous Hoecker album?

Discussions on the role played by and situation of women in the Third Reich not covered in the other sections. Hosted by Vikki.
steve248
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Re: Who were the SS Helferinnen shown in the famous Hoecker album?

Post by steve248 » 30 Jan 2023 21:05

Hans,

I am not belittling (West) German justice in the Auschwitz trial held in Frankfurt/Main but if the evidence was not there, there was no case. Happens in every democracy.

But in the light of the Demjanjuk trial in Germany there is now "guilt by association" which I am sure the legal system names it something else, those exonerated in Fr/Main would probably not be so lucky today.

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Matt Gibbs
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Re: Who were the SS Helferinnen shown in the famous Hoecker album?

Post by Matt Gibbs » 31 Jan 2023 11:04

Hans,

For the original poster, the research will include names, that's my very simple point.

It may even suggest avenues for records where those names turned up, in archives.

What justice may or may not now be served I am not qualified to be discussing.

Regards,
Matt

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Re: Who were the SS Helferinnen shown in the famous Hoecker album?

Post by Mary Jane » 31 Jan 2023 21:52

Matt Gibbs wrote:
30 Jan 2023 19:21
There's an online thesis by Hayden Mueller that includes three helferin from Auschwitz as a case study. I have not got a copy but it's bibliography might help you regarding names and sources?

https://digitalrepository.trincoll.edu/theses/782/
Matt, thank you so much! Anne-Marie Länger is identified in the very first picture I shared here, thanks to your help. The thesis mentions her and includes her pictures. There she is, standing just next to Karl Höcker, to the left (to the viewer). She is the oldest lady in the picture, born 1918. I may prepare a photo comparison later, just like I did for Johanna Rautschka. Anne-Marie Länger's name was on the list provided to me by the Auschwitz Memorial.

What's more, I eliminated the name Rosa Micheler off the list; since in the thesis it says that she served at Auschwitz from October 3, 1944 to February 5 1945, that is after the date the Höcker photographs taken showing the SS Maiden at Solahütte.

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Re: Who were the SS Helferinnen shown in the famous Hoecker album?

Post by Mary Jane » 02 Feb 2023 21:16

Now the records (and hence the details) of all these women are present in the SS Women Personnel Files in NARA, USA. But they are not in digitized form and I don't have access to them.

Likewise, the Bundesarchiv has their records. There are some complications on my part in accessing the Bundesarchiv records. 1. I am not in Germany. 2. I am an independent researcher not affiliated to or financed by anyone. Hence, I can't hire a third party to do this.

At this stage, I need to use secondary sources to keep gaining information about these women, like I have already been doing.

So, if you are able to recommend any sources (books, articles, theses, etc.) which you think that can help, please share.

Thank you.

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Re: Who were the SS Helferinnen shown in the famous Hoecker album?

Post by VanillaNuns » 03 Feb 2023 19:54

Hello Mary Jane,

Please keep us updated with your progress. I have always found these photographs from the album fascinating and wanted to know more about the women pictured.

Good work so far. 👍

Hey: If we get more contributions, is there any chance of the forum staff pinning this most interesting topic. Because I think a lot of our members will find the updates worthwhile.

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Re: Who were the SS Helferinnen shown in the famous Hoecker album?

Post by CraigM » 03 Feb 2023 21:23

VanillaNuns wrote:
03 Feb 2023 19:54
Hello Mary Jane,

Please keep us updated with your progress. I have always found these photographs from the album fascinating and wanted to know more about the women pictured.

Good work so far. 👍
I completely agree. I too would like to encourage you to continue your research Mary Jane. I feel a sadness looking at these young women with smiling faces, realising that they are all almost certainly dead now, or maybe one or two of them are very old women. I look at their smiling faces and wonder what happened to each and every one of them, particularly in the weeks, months and early years after the war. I doubt that they'd have been as happy and smiling in the second half of 1945 as they are in the photos. Like Lost German Girl, some folk are fascinated to know what happened to them. Some must have had horrific experiences at the hands of the Russians (you know what I mean). Life for these women in the aftermath of the war would have been very very different from the happiness shown here.

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Re: Who were the SS Helferinnen shown in the famous Hoecker album?

Post by Mary Jane » 03 Feb 2023 21:24

Annemarie Langer

Image

Image
Photograph dated 22 July 1944.

Image
Annemarie Langer when younger.

The information about her and her pictures come from https://digitalrepository.trincoll.edu/ ... ext=theses [Thesis by Hayden Mueller, Das SS-Helferinnenkorps: Drei Phasen, Drei Frauen; 2019, Trinity College.]

English translation belongs to me to the best of my ability:

“Annemarie Langer was born in Kiel on October 26, 1918. She was beautiful and had grey eyes, dark brown hair, and pale clear skin. She was 1.65 m tall, just enough to reach the minimum standard. She had a middle school education and completed hers Reichsarbeitsdienst from November 1, 1935 to April 1, 1936. She served no mandatory year or country year. …

Her father worked as a shoemaker and was a member of the NSDAP. Her mother's profession is not known, but she was still alive when Anne-Marie applied to the SS school for assistants.

Langer had a younger sister who was a member of the BDM. It was considered important that Langer's sister was a potential candidate for the SS volunteer corps.

When Langer was drafted into the SS School for Female Assistants, she worked as a telephone operator and therefore had to have essential telecommunications skills.

Her training period as a telephone operator at the SS-Reichschule was short, between February 20 – March 20, 1943. …

She was finally transferred to Auschwitz in February 1944.

On July 31st 1944 she was dismissed from the SS volunteer corps. There was no trial against her in the post-war period.”

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Re: Who were the SS Helferinnen shown in the famous Hoecker album?

Post by Mary Jane » 03 Feb 2023 21:56

VanillaNuns wrote:
03 Feb 2023 19:54
Hello Mary Jane,

Please keep us updated with your progress. I have always found these photographs from the album fascinating and wanted to know more about the women pictured.

Good work so far. 👍

Hey: If we get more contributions, is there any chance of the forum staff pinning this most interesting topic. Because I think a lot of our members will find the updates worthwhile.
Thank you VanillaNuns!

Details of Annemarie Langer arrived and she has been matched in the Höcker album.

I hope we keep making progress with this!
CraigM wrote:
03 Feb 2023 21:23
VanillaNuns wrote:
03 Feb 2023 19:54
Hello Mary Jane,

Please keep us updated with your progress. I have always found these photographs from the album fascinating and wanted to know more about the women pictured.

Good work so far. 👍
I completely agree. I too would like to encourage you to continue your research Mary Jane. I feel a sadness looking at these young women with smiling faces, realising that they are all almost certainly dead now, or maybe one or two of them are very old women. I look at their smiling faces and wonder what happened to each and every one of them, particularly in the weeks, months and early years after the war. I doubt that they'd have been as happy and smiling in the second half of 1945 as they are in the photos. Like Lost German Girl, some folk are fascinated to know what happened to them. Some must have had horrific experiences at the hands of the Russians (you know what I mean). Life for these women in the aftermath of the war would have been very very different from the happiness shown here.
Thank you Craig.

I have been reading the book Female Administrators of the Third Reich by Rachel Century. Google it, since it may be of interest to you as well. It analyzes the post-war experiences of the women.

In her statement in the Frankfurt trials, I find these words by Charlotte Schünzel Bartsch striking: "My life ended after Auschwitz."

She is in the meantime in the Höcker album, but I am yet to match her since I need her photographs. I don't know if she has been given any kind of sentence.

Hardly any of the women in the Höcker album are alive today.

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Re: Who were the SS Helferinnen shown in the famous Hoecker album?

Post by Hans1906 » 03 Feb 2023 23:35

Hi Mary Jane,

From my personal point of view, I find your attempts to be pointless.

The few relatives will probably never comment on this topic, nothing else is to be expected.

The topic is too complex, the research about the "Ravensbrück" camp alone moved, and moves, thousands of people and they are very competent experts, these people don't write in an Internet forum.

For my "feeling" you are unfortunately on the wrong track.

You will not find your information in this forum, ever.
This competence is not available here.

This is just scratching the surface, nothing more, this internet forum doesn't provide more.


Hans

* That's not an indictment either, those of us who have seen a German concentration camp and then also "all around" are still stumbling over this past with every step.
If you have an "eye" for all this, then these artefacts are right in front of your eyes, even today, not only in the former Emsland camps.

It is not my intention to write about the former finds, such a thing is forbidden.

I never picked anything up near such camps, a friend at the time did just that.
The "sensation" was overwhelming for my friend, people are very different, you can not lump all people together.

Just being there is torture, these places are taboo, burned, unspeakable, they are dead landscapes.
The paradise of the successful lends itself perfectly to a hell for the unsuccessful. (Bertold Brecht on Hollywood)

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Re: Who were the SS Helferinnen shown in the famous Hoecker album?

Post by Mary Jane » 04 Feb 2023 02:53

^ Shut up Hans, enough with your drama.

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Re: Who were the SS Helferinnen shown in the famous Hoecker album?

Post by Mary Jane » 04 Feb 2023 04:47

As it is known, the US Holocaust Memorial Museum is in possession of the Höcker album.

They have been extensively studying it since it surfaced; and back in 2009, they confirmed the presence of Luzia Arndt and Hildegard Ritzmann in the album.

See page 56 below:
http://www.yu.edu/sites/default/files/l ... rev(1).pdf

So the 4th and 5th names are them, which are also included in the list of 25 names -who served in Auschwitz as the SS-Nachrichtenhelferinnen-
kindly provided to me by the Auschwitz Memorial Museum.

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Re: Who were the SS Helferinnen shown in the famous Hoecker album?

Post by VanillaNuns » 04 Feb 2023 05:32

Wait until Helge from Finland reads this topic. She is a bloodhound when it comes to ancestral research and the "Women of the Reich" section is her favourite section of the forum. Many of her contributions over the years have been invaluable.

It's good to see others getting involved too. Members who don't normally visit this section of the forum.

This project is gaining traction! 😀

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Re: Who were the SS Helferinnen shown in the famous Hoecker album?

Post by steve248 » 04 Feb 2023 10:10

The Zentrale Stelle Ludwigsburg within the last 15 years began investigating younger men and women who served in whatever position in KZ administrations. Naturally, some of the young women in the photo have subsequently died and any judicial investigation may no longer be active. However, it may be interesting to ask the Bundesarchiv Ludwigsburg (via their website) whether they have files on SS-Helferinnen investigations.

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Re: Who were the SS Helferinnen shown in the famous Hoecker album?

Post by Mary Jane » 05 Feb 2023 03:01

VanillaNuns wrote:
04 Feb 2023 05:32
Wait until Helge from Finland reads this topic. She is a bloodhound when it comes to ancestral research and the "Women of the Reich" section is her favourite section of the forum. Many of her contributions over the years have been invaluable.

It's good to see others getting involved too. Members who don't normally visit this section of the forum.

This project is gaining traction! 😀
Indeed :), I hope she comes up too.
steve248 wrote:
04 Feb 2023 10:10
The Zentrale Stelle Ludwigsburg within the last 15 years began investigating younger men and women who served in whatever position in KZ administrations. Naturally, some of the young women in the photo have subsequently died and any judicial investigation may no longer be active. However, it may be interesting to ask the Bundesarchiv Ludwigsburg (via their website) whether they have files on SS-Helferinnen investigations.
Thank you, this is a valuable direction.

Mary Jane
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Re: Who were the SS Helferinnen shown in the famous Hoecker album?

Post by Mary Jane » 07 Feb 2023 06:48

Update: I am waiting for the Bundesarchiv to send me the details of a total of 8 ladies. (2 are already identified.) 8 is the maximum number of (any available) names they can provide you with the details of for your own research or ancestral query purposes. Any more than that, you are either supposed to be there and do your own research, or hire a third party.

Fingers crossed.

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