NS Frauenschaft - Ranks and Organization

Discussions on the role played by and situation of women in the Third Reich not covered in the other sections. Hosted by Vikki.
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Matt Gibbs
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RANK STRUCTURE

Post by Matt Gibbs » 10 Dec 2006 11:40

Hello folks
Can anyone give a clue as to the perceved or actual laid down rank structure within the Women's Organisation of the NSDAP..?
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Matt Gibbs

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Post by Vikki » 13 Dec 2006 05:33

Hello Matt,

I think this is more an answer as to organization of the NS Frauenschaft, but it may give some clues as to rank too.

The 1936 Yearbook of the Reichsfrauenführung, Deutsches Frauenschaffen: Jahrbuch der Reichsfrauenführung, has an chart showing the breakdown of the organization's offices, from the Reichsfrauenführerin at the top to Block- und Haushaltsgruppe at the bottom. At the Reich level, under the NSDAP Reichsleitung itself, is the Reichsfrauenführerin, who is directly in charge of the Red Cross (female), Nursing Sisters, and the Frauenamt der DAF (Women's Office of the German Labor Front), as well as the NS Frauenschaft and Deutsches Frauenwerk.

At the level of Reich administration, the NS Frauenschaft is broken down into nine Hauptabteilungen or departments, each reporting directly to the Reichsfrauenführerin:

I: Kasse
II: Geschäftsleitung
III: Organisation und Personal
IV: Presse Propaganda
V: Kultur-Erziehung-Schulung
VI: Reichsmütterdienst
VII: Volkswirtschaft/Hauswirtschaft
VIII: Grenz- und Ausland
IX: Hilfsdienst


Each of the lower-level geographic administrative units shown--Gau, Kreis, and Ort--have exact duplicates of this organization. The Gau-level offices of the Frauenschaft, for example, are shown as headed by a Gaufrauenschaftsleiterin (the chart uses this term rather than Gaufrauenschaftsführerin, perhaps because of the early date?). The same nine departments existed in each Gau-level office as at the Reich level, with the staff of each department reporting directly to the Gaufrauenschaftsleiterin of that Gau, but also (apparently) ultimately, through her, up to the corresponding Abteilung at the Reich level.

Each Kreis-level NSF office within a Gau had the same arrangement, headed by a Kreisfrauenschaftsleiterin, and with each department also reporting up through the Kreisfrauenschaftsleiterin of that Kreis up to the corresponding Abteilung of the Gau office. The same is true on the chart for the Ort-level organizations, except that the leadership position there is listed as Ortsfrauenschaftsleiterin - Ortsabschnittsleiterin.

The only ranks shown on the chart are those of Reichsfrauenführerin, Gau-, Kreis-, and Ortsfrauenschaftsleiterin, and Ortsabschnittleiterin. One would assume that each of the departments under the leaders, especially at the Reich and other high levels, would have had a supervisor of some kind, but as for title or rank....? Maybe simply "Abteilungsleiterin" or something similar?

Hope this helps. A scan of the chart might have helped, but the type is tiny as it is, and to get the two pages it covers in a single scan would have made it too small to read.


Best,
~Vikki

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Matt Gibbs
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Post by Matt Gibbs » 14 Dec 2006 00:23

Vikki
I have been having a go at typing the chart out in word and will have a go at making it a piccy to upload when I have some time! ;)
Thanks for adding all the info into the thread though, thats really useful. I have found a section about the re-org of the NSF in 1939 Yearbook that seems very interesting.
I am not quite sure yet but it seems to indicate the Gaufrauenschaftsführerin is a rank. It refers to this person being the liason for a whole bunch of other ranks, and the way the test reads leads me to think this is a "personal" title, if you see what I mean, rather than the name on an office door. When it describes someone in relation to this rank it seems to suggest they are in command. Also in the wartime yearbooks they gives the actual names, addresses and telephones of the Gaufrauenschaftsführerin, not just the phone number as an "office to contact", again making me think this is a personal title or rank as opposed to a label for someone who is the head honcho of a certain office.
Until we can turn up a book detailing structure and rank, we shall never know. Sadly the 4 yearbooks I have are full of great info my poor slow german reading cannot extract until I improve!
Best wishes to all
Matt Gibbs

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Post by Phil Nix » 29 Jan 2007 14:06

Hi Vikki
Here is your list with office holders.
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Post by ancasta » 29 Jan 2007 15:10

Great research there Matt. Very enlightening :D

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Post by Vikki » 30 Jan 2007 03:54

Thanks Phil! Great information!

Do you have any other information on the how/why of the reorganization in 1941?

Best,
~Vikki

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Post by Vikki » 13 Sep 2007 02:26

As Matt and I discussed a long time ago, here are the Organisation Plans for the Reichsfrauenführung for the years 1936, 1939, 1940, and 1941. Each is taken from the Jahrbuch der Reichsfrauenführung for that year. The 1936 Plan was nearly impossible to reproduce legibly because of the tiny size of the type, but I can try to answer any questions on the headings.

Best,
~Vikki
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Post by Vikki » 13 Sep 2007 02:29

1941:
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Post by Matt Gibbs » 14 Sep 2007 19:25

Brilliant Vikki
Something I started doing on overlays in long hand but now I can relax and leave it for now LoL.
ttfn
Matt

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NS Frauenschaft - Ranks and Organization

Post by Vikki » 19 Apr 2010 11:49

[Moderator's note: The three posts below were split from the thread at viewtopic.php?f=77&t=152919 and merged into this one. ~Vikki]

BB-WA wrote:So I'm just thinking here (dangerous I know). That could explain why von Riedesel appears on a SS-Hauptamt list which begs the question were all three women (Adriana op ten Noort, von Riedesel and Suadicani) at some point attached to the NS-Frauenschaft in occupied Germanic countries ie. Belgium, Netherlands and Denmark. This could possibly explain the SS-Hauptamt connection as the Germanic countries came under the SS-Hauptamt's sphere of interest.

On the other hand I've never found any reference to this "Hauptabteilung für Frauenarbeit" they worked in on any lists for the various office structures of the SS-Hauptamt. Maybe it is another misspelling from Jost's list (no disrespect meant)and he meant Hauptabteilung für NS-Frauenschaft. Possibly as a liaison office from the NS-Frauenschaft itself for women who were being posted as representitives to these countries?

...

BTW does anyone have a list of the office structure "Hauptabteilung" of the NS-Frauenschaft and its office holders they could post. Any help would be very much appreciated.



Hello Brian,

Just thought I'd save you and Torsten some time on the last part of your question. See viewtopic.php?f=77&t=127381 for a list and charts of Hauptabteilungen of the NS-Frauenschaft. (Thanks to Phil Nix, there is also a list of Hauptabteilungsleiters and -leiterinnen for the various periods of organization.) There was an entire Hauptabteilung of the NSF for Grenzland und Ausland, with subsections for Auslandsarbeit, Grenzlandarbeit, Volksdeutscharbeit, and Kolonialearbeit.

Hope this helps.

Best regards,
~Vikki

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Re: NS Frauenschaft - Ranks and Organization

Post by BB-WA » 21 Apr 2010 07:14

Hi Vikki

Thanks for the link, viewtopic.php?f=77&t=127381, somehow I missed / overlooked that post. Great lists you're a gem.

Also thanks to Phil, as usual, for the main office holders list. I had already seen Phil's other list for NS-Gaufrauenschaftsführerin but thanks for mentioning it.

My thinking (right or wrong ) brought me to a possible link for the three women to the NS Frauenschaft as the SS-Hauptamt doesn't seem to have any Hauptabteilungen in any of its office structures but the NS Frauenschaft certainly does. As you pointed out "There was an entire Hauptabteilung of the NSF for Grenzland und Ausland, with subsections for Auslandsarbeit, Grenzlandarbeit, Volksdeutscharbeit, and Kolonialearbeit". So maybe they were linked to this Hauptabteilung in some way. Appart from Phil's list is there any further breakdown on the Abteilung office holders within this depatment?

Just one question as I'm a little confused here and going slightly off topic, please bear with me. Gertrud Scholtz-Klink was initially Frauenführerin der NS Frauenschaft 00.02.1934. - 00.05.1945, as well as being the Leiterin of other organizations before she became Reichsfrauenführerin in November 1934.

00.11.1934. - 00.05.1945. - Reichsfrauenführerin
00.07.1934. - 00.05.1945. - Leitung des Frauenamts der Deutsche Arbeitsfront
00.06.1934. - (00.00.1945.) - Leiterin des Reichsfrauenbunds des Deutschen Roten Kreuzes - I see this later changed to Leiterin, Amt III, DRK on the 1939 list
02.03.1934. - 00.05.1945. - Frauenführerin, NS Frauenschaft
02.03.1934. - 00.05.1945. - Leiterin, Deutsche Frauenwerk

At the head of all the lists is "Reichsfrauenführerin - i.e. Scholtz-Klink". My question is, is the office of Reichsfrauenführerin and NS Frauenschaft one in the same? I always thought they were separate offices / organizations, thats why I'm confused with "which" office / organization the lists represent.

Even in Matts post above he mentions his list is from the
1936 Yearbook of the Reichsfrauenführung, Deutsches Frauenschaffen: Jahrbuch der Reichsfrauenführung, has an chart showing the breakdown of the organization's offices


He also wonders if the title Reichsfrauenführerin is an office or just a title.

Regards
Brian

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Re: NS Frauenschaft - Ranks and Organization

Post by Vikki » 27 Apr 2010 03:10

Hello Brian,

BB-WA wrote:At the head of all the lists is "Reichsfrauenführerin - i.e. Scholtz-Klink". My question is, is the office of Reichsfrauenführerin and NS Frauenschaft one in the same? I always thought they were separate offices / organizations, thats why I'm confused with "which" office / organization the lists represent.


I perhaps wasn't precise when I called the organizational charts plans of the NS-Frauenschaft. Most of them are actually O-charts of the Reichsfrauenführung, the national or Reich-level leadership of women's organizations--except for the earliest one, from 1936. It is specifically labelled as a chart of the NS Frauenschaft and Deutsches Frauenwerk. Directly subordinate to the Reichsfrauenführerin (Scholtz-Klink) it--and the later charts--shows the breakdown of Hauptabteilungen: the Reichsfrauenführung, or Reich-level leadership. Below the national level, however, in descending scale, it shows the same organization of Abteilungen at the Gau, Kreis, and Ort geographical levels. And in the same place of leadership as the Reichsfrauenführerin occupies over the organization at the national level, each lower level of the 1936 chart shows the organization as being led by a Frauenschaftsleiterin: depending on the geographical level, a Gaufrauenschaftsleiterin, Kreisfrauenschaftsleiterin, Ortsfrauenschaftsleiterin.

The script is tiny even in the book, so I've tried to post a closeup of that central "leadership" section of the chart.

Also, a caption in the lower right corner of each of later three charts specifically indicates that the organization of the Abteilungen in the territorial or local Frauenschaft leadership corresponds to that of the responsible Hauptabteilung (at the national level, in the Reichsfrauenführung).

My understanding of the O-charts is that for general areas of "women's matters," the lower units subordinate to the national leadership were the organizational units of the NS-Frauenschaft, led and administered at the various local levels by Frauenschaft officials. Specific services like the women's sections of the DAF and DRK (which were both simply offices within essentially male organizations) apparently did not fall under these national Hauptabteilungen and local Abteilungen; they are shown on each of the charts as being subordinate to the Reichsfrauenführerin herself, but not to the Hauptabteilungen of the Reichsfrauenführung.

That's my understanding, but I'd be glad to hear other information or details on the subject.

Best,
~Vikki
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Re: NS Frauenschaft - Ranks and Organization

Post by BB-WA » 28 Apr 2010 06:21

Hi Vikki

Thanks for that it does seem more appropriate here and probably should have posted here in the first place. I realise I was going slightly off course. Thanks also for the 1936, enlargement, that was the only one I could not read. Would it be possible to scan the whole document, sorry for being a pest.

I have also found a 1937, O-chart in the "Organisationsbuch NSDAP 1937" at http://www.dws-xip.pl/reich/biografie/d1.zip

The section on the NS Frauenschaft and Deutsche Frauenwerk are on pages 266 - 273. It's a PDF file and downloadable and in excellent resolution. Unfortunately my German lets me down badly and it's a locked PDF so I can't cut and paste to Google translate. Looks like a lot of typing is going to take place soon.

I have since made a large HTML document from the charts in this post and Phil's list with office holders. Just to track the structural changes made over time. The 1936, O-chart lists main offices as "Hauptabteilungen". From the 1937, O-chart the main offices are listed as "Abteilungen and Unterabteilungen" on the 1939, O-chart they are upgraded to "Hauptabteilungen and Abteilungen". Whether this took place in 1938 or 1939, I don't know.

Also unlike the 1936, chart the offices are the same at Reichs and Gau level (9) then diminishing at Kreis level (6) and again at Orts level (4). The chart makes no mention of the "Reichsfrauenführerin" as such but starts with the "Reichsfrauenführung NS Frauenschaft" in the top box then underneath the next box is "Deutsche Frauenwerk" then the main office listings the same as those posted here.

This is were I'm confused again. The 1937, offices correspond to those you have posted but are listed as "Abteilungen and Unterabteilungen" and the document specifically deals with the NSF and Deutsche Frauenwerk. I've been thinking on this (over active brain) and may have a solution, most likely not!

Here goes, the Reichsfrauenführerin/Reichsfrauenführung O-charts posted seem to remain basically the same with offices listed as "Hauptabteilungen" apart from some minor additions/deletions, re-naming and reshuffling within them. Is it possible the NSF and Deutsche Frauenwerk (two different organizations with there own memberships) had identical O-charts but that is why the main offices are listed as "Abteilungen and Unterabteilungen" in the 1937, O-chart. If this is so maybe the office holders had dual roles, such as same position in two organizations, or there are a lot of names to be found?

Maybe if someone has access to other "Organisationsbuch NSDAP" for different years they could comfirm this as it differs in the naming of the main offices at least in 1937.

Hope you could follow this and would welcome your or anyones thoughts on it.

Regards
Brian

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Re: NS Frauenschaft - Ranks and Organization

Post by Heimatschuss » 30 Apr 2010 21:10

Hello Vikki!

Nice 'family' photo of the Reichsfrauenführung that presumably shows Scholtz-Klink, Else Paul and all the Hauptabteilungsleiterinnen of the RFF.
Image

But who is who? The woman on the extreme right is obviously Erika Semmler from department V, compare viewtopic.php?f=77&t=165577&p=1460937#p1460937

Best regards
Torsten

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Re: NS Frauenschaft - Ranks and Organization

Post by Vikki » 01 May 2010 02:26

Heimatschuss wrote:But who is who?

Glad you liked it, Torsten. And I had the same thought as you. It would be interesting to see if we (mainly you :D ) can figure out the identity of each of the women in the picture, and which Hauptabteilungen they were in charge of. As it's from the 1936 Jahrbuch, we at least know the women should be from the "Hauptabteilungen to 1941" section of Phil's post above.

Best,
~Vikki

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