Search for Names, Places and Biographies

Already layed Stumbling Stones

Gretel Schwieger * 1937

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

GEB. 30.9.1937
ERMORDET 24.6.1940

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, Magdalene Schütte, 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

Gretel Schwieger, born on 30 Sept. 1937 in Lokstedt, murdered on 24 June 1940

Gretel Schwieger was born in Lokstedt in 1937, and by the time the "Reich Committee [for the Scientific Registering of Serious Hereditary and Congenital Illnesses]” ("Reichsausschuss [zur wissenschaftlichen Erfassung von erb- und anlagebedingten schweren Leiden]”) was established, she had nearly reached the age of two. Her father, a master shoemaker specializing in orthopedic footwear considered himself "believing in God” ("gottgläubig”), [a Nazi alternative to other Christian denominations], while her mother belonged to the Protestant Church. The parents described Gretel as "gottgläubig” as well. Based on the files, one cannot ascertain whether she was already born with disabilities or whether she stagnated in her development and went blind only due to meningitis.

On 2 Nov. 1939, she was admitted to the internal medicine ward of the Rothenburgsort Children’s Hospital, whose ward physician was Lotte Albers. Nothing is known about the nearly eight months of her hospital stay. Gretel died late in the morning on 24 June 1940. Since the proceedings stipulated by the "Reich Committee” began in Hamburg only in the summer of 1940 or later, Dr. Bayer [the director of Rothenburgsort Children’s Hospital] probably acted based on his personal relations. The physician Lotte Albers and the ward nurse Gudrun Kasch later testified that Gretel Schwieger was murdered through Phenobarbital (Luminal), a drug used for killing.

Gretel’s father notified the Rothenburgsort records office of her death, the cause of which was indicated as "encephalitis” – inflammation of the brain.

In the year 1940, apart from Gretel Schwieger, who was the first firmly established victim of the "Reich Committee” in Hamburg, two additional children murdered in 1940 were listed, though not identified by name. Until May 1940, The Rothenburgsort Children’s Hospital recorded no deaths of children with diseases subject to mandatory reporting, though certainly children suffering from such conditions died at home.

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

Stand: January 2019
© Hildegard Thevs

Quellen: StaH 213-12 Staatsanwaltschaft Landgericht NSG, 0017-001, 002; 332-5 Standesämter 1131+363/ 1940; 352-5 Gesundheitsbehörde – Todesbescheinigungen, StA 4b, 363, 1940.

print preview  / top of page