Summary of case to date

With regards to Operation to scatter leaflets

In the university on February 18, 1943

On February 18, 1943 around 11 am, the trustee of the university called the State Police Headquarters, because an operation to scatter leaflets were taking place at the time. Two suspicious persons were supposedly apprehended by the university employee Schmidt (sic).

The trustee requested that two detectives be sent, which happened immediately. At the same time the State Police ordered that all the exits to the university be locked.

After the necessary police inquiries had been made, the lock-down of the university was lifted around 4 pm. Several persons had to be held for a longer time to check out their identification papers. All of those apprehended were taken to the State Police. Those apprehended by the university employee were Sergeant Hans Scholl, medic, born 1918, and his sister Sophie, born in 1921.

Although the university employee asserted to their face that they were the only ones who could possibly be the perpetrators, they denied it. Finally Sophie Scholl admitted that she had seen a pile of leaflets lying on a wall on the second floor [Note 1] of the university and, in high spirits, had thrown them over the edge. It was immediately suspicious that they did not have a reasonable explanation – indeed, it was outright unbelievable – for the empty suitcase [Note 2] they had with them. Later it was determined that the collected leaflets filled the suitcase exactly.

Despite uninterrupted interrogation, the two continued their denials till around 4 am. Only when Hans Scholl was shown an envelope from his desk in which there were 100 8-Pfennig stamps did he begin his confession.

It must be added that the preliminary investigation had already yielded the information that a man [Note 3] had bought 500 8-Pfennig stamps at a post office in Munich four days ago, and another 1200 8-Pfennig stamps the very next day. The man had said that he needed these stamps to mail leaflets.

Scholl confessed that he and his sister had brought the leaflets to the university and scattered them there. Additionally, he confessed that he had drafted the texts of both leaflets, namely of “Resistance Movement Germany” and “Fellow Students!”. He said that he and he alone had duplicated the leaflets at his residence. He claims he produced 5000 of the first leaflet and 2000 of the second.

He likewise confessed that he and his friend Schmorell, also a member of the armed forces, scattered around 1500 leaflets of the Resistance Movement in Germany throughout Munich the night of January 28/29, 1943. He likewise confessed that he mailed these and other leaflets to various cities in southern Germany. His sister Sophie had mailed similar letters in Augsburg and Stuttgart, his friend Schmorell in Salzburg, Linz, and Vienna. Schmorell also mailed the letters to Frankfurt am Main from Vienna. They got the addresses from telephone directories that are available [to the public] in the Deutsches Museum. His long-time friend Graf, who is also a Sergeant (medic) helped him write the texts of the leaflets, as did Graf’s sister.

A shredded piece of paper containing handwriting was found in Scholl’s coat pocket. Though it was similar to his handwriting, the identity [of the writer] could not be determined. After additional remonstrance [Note 4] [from the interrogator], he confessed that he received this leaflet draft (of the vilest sort) from his friend Probst, a member of the Student Company with the Air Force in Innsbruck, born 1919, married, father of 3 children.

With the above, the mailing and distribution of both leaflets in Munich and in the cities named [above] have been cleared up. The typewriters and duplicating machine have been secured. Additionally, the graffiti operation in Munich “Down with Hitler” has been cleared up, since both paintbrushes and template have been found. With this, all the graffiti and distribution operations of the last several months in Munich and southern German cities have been totally cleared up.

Schmorell is supposedly a fugitive at this time, the borders have been advised. Probst still must be taken into custody. It is worth noting that all four men are members of the armed forces, furloughed to Student Companies. [Note 5]

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Note 1: Second floor U.S., first floor German. Unclear as to whether this is a typo on the part of the person making the report or whether Sophie lied on purpose to divert suspicion, since the maintenance man had spotted them on the third floor.

Note 2: In this place alone, the suitcase was referred to as a Coupékoffer, or a suitcase used for train travel. Otherwise, it is only a Koffer.

Note 3: Gender specific, not “a person.”

Note 4: The writer used the word Vorhalt instead of Vorhaltung, the former generally considered Swiss dialect, not German.

Note 5: This document is not signed or dated, nor is the author’s name stated anywhere thereon. Date used here is estimate – well after the initial days of interrogations of the Scholl siblings, clearly before the arrest of Alexander Schmorell (February 24), and likely shortly before the arrest and interrogation of Christoph Probst.

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Source: ZC13267 (78 – 79)

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