Susanne Hirzel

Susanne Zeller, née Hirzel (7 November 1921 in Untersteinbach – 4 December 2012), was a member of the resistance group "White Rose", for which she was arrested and convicted, but avoided the death penalty.


Susanne Hirzel, daughter of Ulm pastor Ernst Hirzel and granddaughter of the geographer Robert Gradmann, was initially an enthusiastic member of the League of German Girls (where Sophie Scholl was her group leader), but distanced herself increasingly from those in power.[1]

She became a student at the State Academy for Music in Stuttgart, where by spring 1942 her exceptional musical ability was being recognised.[2]

Hirzel and White Rose

In late 1942, while a music student, she again met Sophie Scholl, who called for resistance. At the end of January, at the request of her brother Hans she distributed envelopes containing the fifth "White Rose" leaflet in mailboxes in Stuttgart. This secret operation was prepared together with Franz J. Müller in Ulm Martin Luther Church behind the organ. Her father Ernst Hirzel was then pastor at this parish.

After the arrest and execution of the Scholls, Susanne and her brother Hans were also arrested and convicted in the second "White Rose" trial (in which Kurt Huber, Willi Graf and Alexander Schmorell were sentenced by the People's Court under Roland Freisler to death). Hirzel was sentenced to six months' imprisonment because her knowledge of the leaflets could not be established.

After the war

After the collapse of the Nazi dictatorship in 1945, she became a cello teacher. She wrote a number of books on cello technique.[3]

Like her brother Hans, a functionary of the Republican party and their Presidential candidate, Susanne Hirzel was active in right-wing circles, particularly among the Republicans. In her memoirs A Swabian Youth she writes, inter alia, to the effect that 'The Allies had been "trying to eradicate as many Germans" in their air raids on German cities, and the German concentration camps were of the "model" that Stalin used and that the British followed in the Boer War'. Furthermore she gave interviews to Junge Freiheit in 2002 and to the anti-Islamic blog Politically Incorrect in 2010. She lived most recently in Stuttgart and became actively involved in the civil rights movement Pax Europa (BPE) against the "Islamisation" of Germany, seeing parallels between the subversion of democracy by the Nazis and the aims of the Jihad.[4][5][6][7]

After retiring she published her memories of life in Nazi Germany, in her book, From Yes to No. A Swabian Youth 1933–1945 (2000).[8]

The Ulmer DenkStätte Weiße Rose in the foyer of the EinsteinHaus, the headquarters of the Ulmer Volkshochschule (Adult Education Centre of Ulm) includes a portrait of Susanne Hirzel.


  1. ^ Article about Susanne Hirzel at at, accessed 25 May 2018
  2. ^ White Rose History, Volume II (Academic Version): Journey to Freedom By Ruth Hanna Sachs 'in her second year... her prodigious musical ability had gained recognition from her professors and peers alike'
  3. ^ 'Susanne Hirzel: Cello technique – the thumb position: scales, triads, and thirds for cello' (hirzel-susanne-ue31285) at, accessed 25 May 2018
  4. ^ D. L. Adams (October 2009):The White Rose: An Interview with Mrs. Susanne Zeller–Hirzel at Archived 2016-12-15 at the Wayback Machine Accessed 20 June 2018
  5. ^ Vgl. das Interview Hirzel: Die „Weiße Rose“ und der Counter-Jihad; PI, 8. Oktober 2009
  6. ^ Werner van Bebber: CDU streitet über Islamkritiker in eigenen Reihen. In: Der Tagesspiegel, 24. Oktober 2009, accessed 25 May 2018
  7. ^ Von der Weißen Rose zu den Republikanern., 24. April 2009, accessed 25 May 2018
  8. ^ Susanne Hirzel (1998), Vom Ja zum Nein: Eine schwäbische Jugend 1933–1945, ISBN 978-3931402280
November 7

November 7 is the 311th day of the year (312th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. 54 days remain until the end of the year.

This day marks the approximate midpoint of autumn in the Northern Hemisphere and of spring in the Southern Hemisphere (starting the season at the September equinox).

White Rose

The White Rose (German: die Weiße Rose) was a non-violent, intellectual resistance group in the Third Reich led by a group of students and a professor at the University of Munich. The group conducted an anonymous leaflet and graffiti campaign that called for active opposition to the Nazi party regime. Their activities started in Munich on 27 June 1942, and ended with the arrest of the core group by the Gestapo on 18 February 1943. They, as well as other members and supporters of the group who carried on distributing the pamphlets, faced show trials by the Nazi People's Court (Volksgerichtshof), and many of them were sentenced to death or imprisonment.

The group wrote, printed and initially distributed their pamphlets in the greater Munich region. Later on, secret carriers brought copies to other cities, mostly in the southern parts of Germany. In total, the White Rose authored six leaflets, which were multiplied and spread, in a total of about 15,000 copies. They denounced the Nazi regime's crimes and oppression, and called for resistance. In their second leaflet, they openly denounced the persecution and mass murder of the Jews. By the time of their arrest, the members of the White Rose were just about to establish contacts with other German resistance groups like the Kreisau Circle or the Schulze-Boysen/Harnack group of the Red Orchestra. Today, the White Rose is well-known both within Germany and worldwide.

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