Glossary beginning with W

Walther Funksearch for term

1890-1960. Reich Minister for Economic Affairs (1938 - 1945) and President of the German Reichsbank (1939 - 1945). As a defendant at the International Military Tribunal, he was found guilty of crimes against peace, war crimes and crimes against humanity. Funk was sentenced to life imprisonment but was released in 1957 due to illness.

Wannsee Conferencesearch for term

Conference called by Reinhard Heydrich and held at a lakeside villa in Wannsee, a suburb of Berlin, on January 20, 1942, to coordinate the logistics of the "final solution."

Warsaw Ghettosearch for term

Established in November 1940, the Warsaw Ghetto was surrounded by a wall and contained nearly 500,000 Jews and several thousand Gypsies. In 1941, about 45,000 Jews died there from overcrowding, hard labor, lack of sanitation, starvation, and epidemics. During 1942, most of the ghetto residents were deported to Treblinka, leaving 30,000 Jews in the ghetto. A revolt lasting 28 days took place in April-May 1943, when the Germans attempted to raze the ghetto and deport the remaining inhabitants to Treblinka.

Werner Bestsearch for term

1903-1989. Received a doctorate in law, 1927, joined Nazi party, 1930, and the SS, 1931, highest rank SS Lieutenant General [Obergruppenführer], civil servant in Hesse, 1929, commissioner for police in Hesse, 1933, Heydrich's legal adviser and chief of Office for Administration and Legal Affairs in the Central Office of the Security Police, 1935, chief of Office I (Personnel) in the Central Office for Reich Security, 1939-1940, chief of civil administration with the military governor in France, 1940-1942, Reich Plenipotentiary in occupied Denmark, 1942-1945, sentenced to death by Danish court in 1946, pardoned in 1949 and released in 1951.

Werner Heydesearch for term

Born in 1902. Doctorate in medicine, licensed as a physician in 1926, specialized in psychiatry and neurology, 1929, joined Nazi party, 1933, and the SS, 1936, promoted to SS Lieutenant Colonel, 1943, advisory psychiatrist for the concentration camps, 1934, chief of the medical department of the T4 "euthanasia" program, 1940-1941, interned by the United States Army, 1945, escaped, 1947, practiced medicine as psychiatrist in Schleswig-Holstein under the name of Sawade, 1949-1959, indicted by the attorney general in Frankfurt, 1959, committed suicide in pre-trial detention, 1964.

Wewelsburg, Cult and Terror Site of the SSsearch for term

Built in 1603-1609 as a secondary residence of the prince bishops of Paderborn. In 1934, the SS rented the castle, which was to become a shrine for dead SS leaders. The Reich Labor Service began construction work, which was continued with prisoners from Sachsenhausen from 1939 on. In 1941, the concentration camp "Niederhagen" was established at Wewelsburg. Of the 3,900 prisoners there, at least 1,285 died of starvation and homicide. On March 31, 1945, Himmler issued orders to blow up the castle. Two days later, American troops liberated the remaining prisoners. In 1982, an exhibition and memorial site was opened on the site.

Wilhelm Stuckartsearch for term

1902-1953. Lawyer who joined the Nazi party in 1922 and participated in the Hitler Munich putsch in 1923. Became undersecretary in the Reich Ministry of the Interior in 1935 and co-authored the Nuremberg laws. At the January 1942 Wannsee Conference, Stuckart proposed compulsory sterilization of persons of "mixed blood" [Mischlinge] and divorces for those in mixed marriages. Arrested in May 1945, he denied attending the Wannsee Conference. In April 1949, he was sentenced to prison for 3 years and 10 months, the sentence was counted as having been served during his pretrial imprisonment.

Wilhelmstrasse Trialsearch for term

Case 11 of the American Nuremberg Tribunals, November 1947 to November 1948, was also known as the Ministries Trial. The defendants included Ernst von Weizsäcker and other officials of the German Foreign Office, which had been located on Wilhelmstrasse in Berlin.

Wittenbergesearch for term

From1938 to 1945, the Kurmark Pulp and Rayon Staple Factory was in Wittenberge. At times over 1000 people were forced to work there, producing synthetic fibers (used for example in uniforms and munitions), and nutrient yeast. From 1942, the Neuengamme Concentration Camp had a branch on the factory grounds, in which several hundred prisoners had to live and work under inhuman conditions.

Synonyms: KZ-Branch Camp Neuengamme
Wöbbelinsearch for term

A satellite camp of Neuengamme near Ludwigslust, Germany, opened on February 12, 1945, that served as a labor camp and transit facility for prisoners evacuated from other Nazi concentration camps threatened by the Allied advance. Units of the U.S. Army liberated the camp on May 2, 1945 and found 4,000 prisoners and 1,000 corpses. The total number of those who died at Wöbbelin cannot be determined.

Wolfgang Langhoffsearch for term

1901-1966. Düsseldorf actor and theater director, arrested as a communist in February 1933 and sent to Börgermoor. He was released and subsequently fled to Switzerland in 1935. His memoirs, "Die Moorsoldaten" [We Are the Peat Bog Soldiers], published in 1935, describe this camp and the song of the same name. After 1945, Langhoff was appointed director of the Düsseldorf theater, and in 1946 he became supervising director of two major East Berlin theaters.