Johanna Kirchner, Germany

Johanna Kirchner, a German opponent of the Nazi regime, came from a social-democratic family. When she was fourteen she joined the Socialist Worker Youth and when she turned eighteen she became a member of the Social Democratic Party of Germany. In 1933, when Hitler came to power, Ms. Kirchner was forced to flee to Saarbrücken when it became known that she was helping to free an anti-Nazi from the Gestapo. When the Second World War broke out, Ms. Kirchner fled to France where she led the Saar Refugees’ Committee in distributing illegal leaflets. In 1942, Ms. Kirchner was arrested and handed over to the Gestapo. She went to prison. Two years later she was sentenced to death and was beheaded.


Edited by Lauren Goldfarb