Exhibition “Jehovah’s Witnesses, victims of two German dictatorships – the prisoners of Roter Ochse”

Königlich-Preußische Straf-, Lern- und Besserungsanstalt "Roter Ochse"
Königlich-Preußische Straf-, Lern- und Besserungsanstalt “Roter Ochse”

Special Exhibition from November 22, 2007 to February 13, 2008

Hours :
Tuesday through Friday : 10 am to 4 pm
First Saturday and Sunday of the month : 1 pm to 5 pm

Free Admission Location :
Roter Ochse Memorial
(First Floor)
20b, rue Kirchtor
06108 Halle (Saale)

The Roter Ochse prison was opened in 1842 in Halle, Prussia (Germany).  When Hitler came to power in 1933, the Nazis sent large numbers to this prison, including political opponents and those that they considered as resisters.  Among the latter, 285 men and women who were Jehovah’s Witness suffered intense persecution there. Fifty-seven youths from this small community were beheaded at Roter Ochse because they refused induction into the German army on religious grounds. Such was the case of Marcel Sutter from Mulhouse, Alsace.

Under the GDR (East Germany) from 1950 until December 1989, more than 9,000 people were incarcerated at Roter Ochse and subjected to interrogation by the Stasi. Among these were numerous Jehovah’s Witnesses. After years of internment in the Nazi concentration camps, they were again pursued and thrown into prison, this time by the communist East German government.

The exhibition tells their deeply moving stories, including those of Fritz Adler and Lothar Hörnig.