Ernst Wille (politician)

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Ernst Wille (born April 20, 1894 in Groß-Ottersleben ; † May 27, 1944 in Neuengamme concentration camp ) was an SPD politician and resistance fighter against National Socialism .


Wille obtained secondary school leaving certificate and completed a commercial apprenticeship in Magdeburg . In 1913 he joined the SPD.

In 1914 he was called up for military service. During the First World War he was taken prisoner by the French, from which he did not return until 1920.

He was elected chairman of the SPD local group Groß-Ottersleben. In 1924, Wille was one of the founders of the Reichsbanner Schwarz-Rot-Gold , which had set itself the goal of protecting the republic . From 1924 to 1933 he was head of the Gaus Magdeburg-Anhalt of this organization. He was strongly committed against the emerging National Socialism. When Adolf Hitler was staying in 1932, he is said to have planned an assassination attempt , which however did not succeed.

In the spring of 1933 he was briefly arrested several times, but was released again. Having become unemployed, he founded a restaurant in the Magdeburg district of Buckau, which is mostly inhabited by workers . The restaurant developed into a meeting place for the social democrats who were illegally involved. After being arrested again, he was imprisoned in the Buchenwald concentration camp in September 1939 as part of the special war campaign. At first he had to endure abuse. However, he was then used in the construction office, which significantly improved his situation. He was released in April 1943. He turned down an offer from the SS to continue his work in the concentration camp as a civilian.

He returned to Magdeburg and took a job at the Härtol works.

He was arrested again in December 1943 for being denounced for the 1932 assassination attempt. First he was imprisoned in the Gestapo reception camp Magdeburg-Rothensee and then in March 1944 he was brought to the Neuengamme concentration camp. Presumably, the note " return unwanted " was added, which amounted to a direct order to murder. At least Wille died shortly afterwards, although he was still in good health in Rothensee.


The city of Magdeburg, to which Groß-Ottersleben also belongs today, has named a street ( Ernst-Wille-Straße ) and a secondary school in his honor. Since 2010, a stumbling block for Ernst Wille has been laid in front of the former Willes restaurant at Klosterbergestraße 30 / Coquistraße 4 .


  • Beatrix Herlemann : Will, Ernst. In: Guido Heinrich, Gunter Schandera (ed.): Magdeburg Biographical Lexicon 19th and 20th centuries. Biographical lexicon for the state capital Magdeburg and the districts of Bördekreis, Jerichower Land, Ohrekreis and Schönebeck. Scriptum, Magdeburg 2002, ISBN 3-933046-49-1 .
  • Martin Wiehle : Magdeburg personalities. Published by the Magistrate of the City of Magdeburg, Department of Culture. imPuls Verlag, Magdeburg 1993, ISBN 3-910146-06-6 .