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Magdalene Schütte * 1939

Marckmannstraße 135 (ehemalige Kinderklinik) (Hamburg-Mitte, Rothenburgsort)

GEB. 5.10.1939
ERMORDET 8.1.1943

further stumbling stones in Marckmannstraße 135 (ehemalige Kinderklinik):
Andreas Ahlemann, Rita Ahrens, Ursula Bade, Hermann Beekhuis, Ute Conrad, Helga Deede, Jürgen Dobbert, Anneliese Drost, Siegfried Findelkind, Rolf Förster, Volker Grimm, Antje Hinrichs, Lisa Huesmann, Gundula Johns, Peter Löding, Angela Lucassen, Elfriede Maaker, Renate Müller, Werner Nohr, Harald Noll, Agnes Petersen, Renate Pöhls, Gebhard Pribbernow, Hannelore Scholz, Doris Schreiber, Ilse Angelika Schultz, Dagmar Schulz, Gretel Schwieger, Brunhild Stobbe, Hans Tammling, Peter Timm, Heinz Weidenhausen, Renate Wilken, Horst Willhöft

Rothenburgsort Children's Hospital

In the former Rothenburgsort Children's Hospital, the National Socialists implemented their "euthanasia program" from the early 1940s.
Hildegard Thevs was able to research 33 names of murdered children.

A plaque on the building has commemorated the more than 50 murdered babies and children since 1999:

In this building
between 1941 and 1945
more than 50 handicapped children were killed.
An expert committee classified them
as "unworthy life" and assigned them
to be killed in specialized children's wards.
The Hamburg health administration
was involved in this.
Hamburg medical officers supervised
the admission and killing of the children.
Doctors of the children's hospital
carried them out.
None of those involved
was prosecuted for this.

Further information (in German) on the Internet at:

35 Stolpersteine für Rothenburgsort – Hamburger Abendblatt 10.10.2009

Stolpersteine für ermordete Kinder – ND 10.10.2009

Stolpersteine gegen das Vergessen – Pressestelle des Senats 09.10.2009

Die toten Kinder von Rothenburgsort – 09.10.2009

35 Stolpersteine verlegt – Hamburg 1 mit Video 09.10.2009

Wikipedia - Institut für Hygiene und Umwelt

Gedenken an mehr als 50 ermordete Kinder - Die Welt 10.11.1999

Euthanasie-Opfer der Nazis - Beitrag NDR Fernsehen 29.05.2010

Hitler und das "lebensunwerte Leben" - Andreas Schlebach NDR 24.08.2009

Magdalene Schütte, born on 5 Oct. 1939 in Hamburg, murdered on 8 Jan. 1943

Magdalene Schütte was born as an illegitimate child. Her mother worked as a domestic help. She belonged to the Baptist Free Church. At the time she gave birth to her daughter she was 19 years old.

The father, a farm worker by trade and later a soldier, was three years older and lived as a subtenant in the grandparents’ home.

Diagnosed as an "idiotic child” at the age of two and a quarter years, on 7 Jan. 1942, Magdalene Schütte was admitted to what was then the Alsterdorf Asylum (Alsterdorfer Anstalten), where Gerhard Kreyenberg prepared a hereditary health report (Erbgesundheitsgutachten). According to this, all of the child’s relatives were healthy. On the instructions of the youth welfare office, after approx. five months Magdalene was transferred to the Rothenburgsort Children’s Hospital. It is not known who arranged for the admission to "Alsterdorf” and for the transfer.

Magdalene was a child confined to bed (a so-called "Liegekind”), not able to move in accordance with her age and dependent on others. She was incapable of speaking, did not play with toys, though she did observe her environment and seemed to understand a few things when addressed, reacting to it by laughing.

Apparently, she was discharged in Sept. 1942, though not returning to Alsterdorf. No documents are available concerning these two stays in hospital. Until this time, she had obviously not yet been reported to the "Reich Committee [for the Scientific Registering of Serious Hereditary and Congenital Illnesses]” ("Reichsausschuss [zur wissenschaftlichen Erfassung von erb- und anlagebedingten schweren Leiden]”).

On 25 November of that year, the mother took her daughter Magdalene to Rothenburgsort again. She believed Magdalene now had somewhat better vision, which may have meant "fixing her eyes” on someone or something. However, according to her, Magdalene had difficulties swallowing when eating, tore paper apart, and threw everything to the ground, though she was rather calm and timid. In the course of the admission examination, physician Lotte Albers determined that there were hardly any differences to the results "back then.” Body size and weight were below the norm, though Magdalene was a bit better at sitting up and putting her legs in position when standing up, but she was extremely tense. In addition, the doctor noted, she had a sore back and did not play or speak. She made a diagnosis of "Little’s Disease,” the contemporary term for spastic paralyses.

During her six-week stay in the children’s hospital, "blood glucose curves,” probably daily profiles, were prepared and glucose tolerance tests – giving carrot potato soup – carried out. It was not possible to clarify whether or not they played a diagnostic or therapeutic role for Magdalene or instead simply served toward Wilhelm Bayer’s research into improving babies’ and infants’ nutrition.

On 4 Dec. 1942, an encephalograph was administered. Magdalene lived through the procedure which showed merely a moderate widening of the main cerebral ventricle.

According to a note dated 30 Dec. 1942, she made no progress at all. No clues exist regarding talks with the mother about the "treatment.” Lotte Albers injected Magdalene with a large dose of Phenobarbital (Luminal), with the ward nurse, Margarethe Rieckmann, holding the little girl.
Magdalene died on 8 Jan. 1943. She reached the age of three years and three months.

The following day, her grandmother, Johanna Schütte, notified the Rothenburgsort records office of her death. The cause of death provided was "Little’s Disease, convulsions.”

Translator: Erwin Fink
Kindly supported by the Hermann Reemtsma Stiftung, Hamburg.

Stand: January 2019
© Hildegard Thevs

Quellen: Ev. Stiftung Alsterdorf, Archiv V 274; Erbgesundheitskartei; Wunder, Kreyenberg; StaH 213-12 Staatsanwaltschaft Landgericht – NSG, 0017/002; 332-5 Standesämter, 1187+30/1943; AB 1943.

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