Josef Ledwohn

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Josef Ledwohn (born October 24, 1907 in Rünthe , Unna district, † October 4, 2003 in Berlin ) was a German KPD functionary, resistance fighter against National Socialism and a member of the NRW state parliament .

Live and act

Josef Ledwohn completed an apprenticeship as an electrician. In 1922 he left the SAJ via the KJVD in 1929 and joined the KPD . Before 1933 he was a union member of the German Metalworkers' Association . Because of his participation in the anti-fascist resistance, he was sentenced to two and a half years in prison in December 1933. After his release, he worked for a shaft construction company and was still active in the resistance against the Nazi regime .

After the end of the Second World War , Josef Ledwohn was one of the women and men in the Ruhr area who campaigned for a socialist Germany. He helped rebuild the unions and became a member of IG Bergbau . In 1946 he was a member of the Provincial Council of Westphalia. Together with other KPD functionaries such as Fritz Rische , Walter Jarrek , Max Reimann , Max Schäfer and Willi Perk , he helped set up the KPD organization in the Ruhr area and was elected 1st Secretary of the KPD state leadership when the state of North Rhine-Westphalia was founded . From 1946 until his arrest in 1954 he was a KPD member of the NRW state parliament.

High treason trial and KPD ban

Because of the KPD program of the national reunification , he was tried before the BGH together with Walter Fisch , Fritz Rische , Richard Scheringer , Karl Zemke and Christel Zellner . Josef Ledwohn was sentenced to three years and six months in prison and his basic rights were stripped of his four years. This judgment had a pilot function for the KPD ban process before the Federal Constitutional Court . On December 13, 1951, the KPD had appointed the members of its party executive Rische, Heinz Renner and Fisch, and on November 17, 1954, the member of the party executive Ledwohn as their agents in the KPD ban process. In the 1950s, sentenced by the Federal Court of Justice to 3 1/2 years in prison for “preparing for high treason”.

In the DDR

After his release, the KPD functionary lived in East Berlin . Until 1968 he was a member of the Central Committee and the Politburo of the KPD in East Berlin. In 1968 he became a member of the newly founded DKP and its state committee in North Rhine-Westphalia. From 1969 to 1974 he was a member of the party executive committee. In 1975 Ledwohn moved back to the GDR and became a member of the SED . In 1975/76 he was a research assistant and then head of department at the Institute for Marxism-Leninism at the Central Committee of the SED . He then went into retirement. In 1990 he joined the PDS .

Josef Ledwohn is buried in an anonymous urn collecting grave on the eastern border of Berlin's Friedrichsfelde central cemetery.



  • West Germany in the golden noose. From the presentation to the 3rd German People's Congress in Berlin on May 30, 1949, Kongress-Verlag, 1949.
  • Unions, location and perspective (as editor), news publishing company. 1971.


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