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Oral history interview with Charlotte Müller

Oral History | Accession Number: 1992.A.0124.44 | RG Number: RG-50.028.0044

Some video files begin with 10-60 seconds of color bars.

Charlotte Mueller, born September 25, 1912 in Siebenlehn (part of Großschirma), Germany, describes her parents; her older sister, three younger sisters, and younger brother; her education; her parents becoming Jehovah's Witnesses in 1925; life in 1933 in Chemnitz, Germany, including the various political movements; the J.W.'s communities in Leipzig, Germany; being employed at a factory which was taken over by the German Arbeitsfront and refusing to join the Arbeitsfront; the J.W. headquarters in Magdeburg, Germany being effective in helping J.W.s; spending some time in a pioneer house in Utrecht, Netherlands; being arrested in August 1936 by the Gestapo for copying and distributing the “Watchtower”; receiving a two year sentence; performing agricultural labor while she was imprisoned; being released August 23, 1938 and immediately being taken back to Chemnitz for another hearing; refusing to renounce her faith; being sent to Lichtenburg concentration camp; being moved to Ravensbruck in May 1939; seeing her sister; her work assignments; being placed in the “punishment” barrack for refusing to wash a Nazi flag; meeting Jews for the first time; obtaining copies of the “Watchtower”; becoming the housekeeper in the household of the SS officer in charge of food provisions for the whole camp; being forced to flee with the family she had been serving when the Allied bombing increased; escaping from the family and finding J.W.s in a small town nearby; traveling by train from Schwerin to Chemnitz; remaining an active J.W.; being moved to Maagenburg, where she was to remain until 1951; the banning of J.W. in East Germany in 1951; acting as a courier, carrying J.W. literature from Berlin to East Germany; being arrested and sentenced to eight years in prison; being imprisoned in Waldheim and Halle; obtaining copies of the “Watchtower”; serving a total of six years in East German and Russian prisons; and being released two years early due to serious illness (the last 7-10 minutes of this interview are devoted to the display of many relevant documents and newspaper clippings).

Interviewee
Charlotte Müller
Interviewer
Robert Buckley
Date
1991 July 20  (interview)
Language
German
Extent
1 videocassette (VHS) : sound, color ; 1/2 in..