Ruth von Kleist Retzow

Ruth von Kleist-Retzow (born Countess von Zedlitz-Trützschler, n . 4 of February of 1867 in Nieder Großenborau ., Current Borów Wielki – f 2 of October of 1945 in Kikowo ( Pomerania )) was a matriarch of the German nobility belonging to The Confessing Church and member of the resistance against the Nazis .


Ruth von Kleist-Retzow was the third of the six children of Count Robert von Zedlitz-Trützschler and Agnes von Rohr-Levetzow. In 1881 the family moved to Oppeln , where his father held a position for Bismarck .

In 1886 he married Jürgen von Kleist-Retzow, son of Hans Hugo von Kleist-Retzow, moving to Pomerania where he had five children. In 1897 after the birth of his fifth son Jürgen von Kleist-Retzow died in Dresden and the young widow Ruth von Kleist-Retzow, transferred to Stettin , where he owned an apartment near Herbert and Gottfried von Bismarck, his brother-in-law.

From the 1930s seriously worried about the advent of National Socialism , he maintained contact with Ewald von Kleist-Schmenzin (author of “National Socialism, a Danger” of 1932 and father of Ewald-Heinrich von Kleist-Schmenzin ) hosted the illegal seminar of The Confessing Church founded by Dietrich Bonhoeffer , in Finkenwalde near Stettin. The powerful matriarch developed a deep friendship with the pastor offering her full support.

His granddaughter Maria von Wedemeyer will meet the pastor with whom he will commit in 1943. The Countess will house Jews at her residence while Bonhoffer obtains visas or passports to Sweden .

Hans Jürgen von Kleist and his son-in-law Hans von Wedemeyer are reserve officers as well as six of their grandchildren (Konstantin and Jürgen Christoph von Kleist, Alla and Hans Conrad Stahlberg, Jürgen and Hans Otto von Bismarck) 1 and The conspirators nested in the Abwehr and led by Hans von Dohnanyi , Wilhelm Canaris and Hans Oster use the help of Dietrich Bonhoeffer , Klaus Bonhoeffer and Rüdiger Schleicher among others.

After the attacks on Hitler in 1943 and the July 20 plot he will expose his friends, who will be imprisoned, tried and executed for the most part.

He had to flee the advance of the Red Army in Kieckow, where he died 78 years after the end of the war.


  1. Back to top↑ «MATRIARCH OF CONSPIRACY – by Jane Pejsa – Kenwood Publishing» . Archived from the original on November 8, 2015.