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Karl Holzfäller

Stolperstein für Karl Holzfäller und Charlotte Bloch © Koordinierungsstelle Stolpersteine Berlin
Markgrafendamm 35

Friedrichshain-Kreuzberg – Friedrichshain

02/05/1884 in Köslin / Koszalin
01/29/1945 in Zuchthaus Brandenburg-Görden

Karl Holzfäller
In October 1943, the accused Holzfäller made comments of a communist nature to Niendorf, a member of the Wehrmacht, in order to undermine his loyalty to the state. He influenced another Wehrmacht member named Petereit in a similar fashion. He has been found guilty of incitement to disaffection, aiding the enemy and planning high treason and shall be sentenced to death and the permanent loss of civic rights. The accused Katz and Schulze supported Holzfäller in influencing Niendorf and are therefore sentenced to eight years’ imprisonment each. The confiscated radio will not be returned. The accused bear the costs and expenses of the suit.
People's Court verdict of 5.1.1945

Karl Holzfäller was a mason who fought in the First World War and was awarded the Iron Cross. Towards the end of the war, he joined the revolutionary Spartacus League. He became a member of a workers' and soldiers' council and was a founding member of the KPD (Communist Party of Germany). He was a KPD cell leader in Berlin from 1920 to 1928. In 1931 he moved to Woltersdorf in Brandenburg where he worked as a mason and trained apprentices. During the Second World War, he corresponded with a former apprentice who was fighting in the Soviet Union about the local conditions and the difficulties facing the German soldiers. At this point, one of his sons had fallen in the Soviet Union. A friend of his son's who had also been stationed in the Soviet Union came to see him in 1943. Holzfäller greeted him with the words Aren’t you ashamed to turn up here in uniform when you know we lost our son? He added that his son had fallen because of a madman fighting the inevitable. He then tuned into Radio Moscow to convince the young man. Later, other acquaintances arrived. His indictment included precise details of the discussion that day and noted: The witness Niendorf reported Holzfäller to the Gestapo on 18th October 1943 after overcoming his qualms about filing charges against his friend's father. Karl Holzfäller was arrested on 11.11.1943 and sentenced to death by the People's Court of Potsdam. He was executed at Brandenburg-Görden Prison.

Karl Holzfäller was a city councillor 1921 – 1929, Constituency 5 Friedrichshain (KPD)

Biographical Compilation

Verein Aktives Museum e. V.

English Translation

Charlotte Kreutzmüller