Ludwig Soswinski

Soswinski Ludwig ( Vienna , 15 of January of 1905 – 9 of February of 1997 ) was a member of the resistance against Nazism , jurist, communist prisoner in several Nazi concentration camps . After the fall of the Third Reich , he worked as a staff member in several National Socialist victims’ organizations and was the co-founder and vice president of the Austrian Resistance Documentation Archive. 1


Soswinski, the son of a typographer, studied Law Sciences and worked as an official for the organization Socialist Students of Austria 2 (VSStÖ, for its acronym in German); Later, he was a reviewer at a consumer cooperative. After the armed uprising in mid-February 1934 against Austrofascism , led by Engelbert Dollfuß , he joined the Communist Party of Austria (KPÖ), which was then illegal. He was arrested for it in 1937 and received the amnesty in February 1938. After the Anschluss of Austria to the Third Reich , Soswinski was arrested by the Gestapo on March 13, 1938 and on April 1 of the same year was transported by the known train Like Prominententransport (transport of the celebrities) to the Dachau concentration camp .

A few months later, Sowinski assumed the role of kapo in the call room admission or Schubraum 3 (in which prisoners of their belongings is depojaba), where he was responsible for managing the accounts of the prisoners. Soswinski was responsible for transferring money from the accounts of wealthy prisoners (always with his consent) to accounts of prisoners without resources so that they could also buy in the canteen of the concentration camp. When the SS discovered these transactions in the spring of 1940, prison manager Egon Zill ordered treasury commanders to spend 45 days in the shady bunker cells and be transferred to the punishment unit for a year. In January of 1944 Soswinski was transferred to the extermination camp of Majdanek and later, after its dissolution in July of 1944, to the concentration camp of Auschwitz . 4

There, Soswinski worked as a kapo and belonged to an Austrian guerrilla organization founded in 1942 in the POW camp. Some components of the guerrilla organization were: Alfred Klahr , Hermann Langbein , Ernst Burger , Rudolf Friemel and Ludwig Vesely . In May 1943, he founded guerrilla group Auschwitz (KGA, for its acronym in German) with the union of the Austrian guerrilla organization and the resistance of the Polish prisoners. 5 In autumn 1944, Soswinski joined the KGA of the International Board . 6 After the evacuation of the concentration camp of Auschwitz, was transferred to the concentration camp of Mauthausen , where it belonged again to the resistance of the prisoners. He was released from Mauthausen in May 1945. 7

At the end of the war, Soswinski, who had married an Auschwitz survivor, belonged to the municipal council of Vienna and to the regional parliament by the KPÖ between the years 1945 and 1958. He was also delegate of the federation of members of the resistance of Austria , The Fascism Victims Association and the Mauthausen concentration camp community. In 1963 he was the co-founder and, later, the vice president of the Documentation Archive of the Austrian Resistance. 7


  • International Committee of Dachau ; Barbara Distel . Dachau Concentration Camp Memorial Site (edition): Konzentrationslager Dachau 1933 bis 1945 – Text- und Bilddokumente zur Ausstellung . (In German) Munich 2005, ISBN 3-87490-750-3 .


  1. Back to top↑ Austrian Resistance Documentation Center (in German)
  2. Back to top↑ Official website of VSStÖ (in German)
  3. Back to top↑ Audioguide of the memorial. Guidance plan and guided audiovisit offer. KZ-Gedenkstätte Dachau, Stiftung Bayerische Gedenkstätten. 28 May 2013. Page 1 [1] (pdf; 548 kB)
  4. Back to top↑ Selbstbehauptung und Solidarität (in German ) . Haus der Bayerischen Geschichte. Page 3 (pdf; 401 kB)
  5. Back to top↑ Kropf, Rudolf: Die Befreiung von Auschwitz (in German) . 67th edition, January 2005. Faculty of Social Sciences, Economics and Business, Johannes Kepler University of Linz. Page 3 (pdf; 81 kB)
  6. Back to top↑ Henryk Świebocki: Die “Kampfgruppe Auschwitz” . (In German) Wacław Długoborski, Franciszek Piper (edition): Auschwitz 1940-1945. Studien zur Geschichte des Konzentrations- und Vernichtungslägers Auschwitz. , Oswiecim 1999, III. Volume Widerstand , p. 155
  7. ↑ Jump to:a b Dr. Ludwig Soswinski zum Gedenken (in German) , Der Freiheitskämpfer . 1st edition, March 1997. Page 4 (pdf; 3 344 kB)