Werner Jochmann (historian)

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Werner Jochmann (born August 5, 1921 in Biesig ; † November 16, 1994 in Hamburg ) was a German historian and director of the research center for the history of National Socialism in Hamburg .


Werner Jochmann grew up as the son of a farmer in modest circumstances. In 1940 he passed the Abitur at the grammar school in Reichenbach. Immediately afterwards he was drafted into the Wehrmacht and wounded in Russia in August 1941. After his discharge from the hospital, Jochmann studied history, German, geography and philosophy in Breslau from 1942 . The attempt to continue his studies in Jena after the end of the war failed because he was expelled from the university because of a conflict with a communist functionary. In 1946 he followed his teacher Hermann Aubin first to Göttingen and a few months later to Hamburg , where he with the work in 1949 Hamburg trade in the 13th and 14th centuries doctorate was. But he turned down an offer to join the workforce of the Monumenta Germaniae Historica .

From 1948 to 1953 he was a teacher at a Hamburg high school. Jochmann became assistant to contemporary historian Fritz Fischer at the University of Hamburg in 1953 and spent the next seven years intensively researching German history in the 20th century. In 1960 the Hamburg Senate entrusted him with setting up what was then the research center for the history of National Socialism in Hamburg, which he headed for 26 years until he retired in 1986. During this time the facility developed into a well-known institute at home and abroad. When the institute was re-established, Jochmann insisted that not only the time of National Socialism in the narrower sense, but also the prehistory since the founding of the Reich in 1871 should be examined. A large number of studies on the political and social history of Hamburg and Germany from the end of the 19th to the middle of the 20th century appeared in his era. The focus was on the question of the causes of the rise of National Socialism, of its forerunners and pioneers.

In addition, Jochmann was active in teaching for many years. From 1954 to 1959 he taught at the Institute for Teacher Training, from 1959 to 1963 at the Academy of Sciences and from 1967 to 1984 at the Department of History at the University of Hamburg. Jochmann acted as an expert in the Hamburg NS trial against Ludwig Hahn , the commander of the security police and the SD in Warsaw. Jochmann also became known to a wider public through the publication of a faithful version of Hitler's table talks . He made fundamental contributions to the spread of anti-Semitism (until 1945) between 1871 and 1945 and the history of National Socialism in Hamburg and Germany as well as the political role of Protestants during this period.

Jochmann worked according to the maxim “memory frees you and is the basis of reconciliation”, according to the news magazine Der Spiegel after Jochmann's death in 1994. After that, his work as a historian differed from an ideologist in that he was also ready to “get other answers, than expected or even desired ”. Jochmann was one of the first historians to reject justifying views of National Socialism as "industrial accidents in history" or as "fate that has befallen Germany".

Fonts (selection)

  • (Ed.): Monologues in the Führer Headquarters 1941–1944 . Recorded by Heinrich Heim. Hamburg 1980, ISBN 3-8135-0796-3 ; Special edition, Munich 2000, ISBN 3-572-01156-6 .
  • Social crisis and hostility towards Jews in Germany 1870-1945 (= Hamburg Contributions to Social and Contemporary History , Volume 23). Hamburg 1988, ISBN 3-7672-1056-8 .
  • In the struggle for power. Hitler's speech to the Hamburg National Club from 1919 (= publications by the Research Center for the History of National Socialism in Hamburg , Volume 1). Frankfurt am Main 1960
  • National Socialism and Revolution. Origin and history of the NSDAP in Hamburg 1922–1933. Documents . Frankfurt am Main 1963 (publications by the Research Center for the History of National Socialism in Hamburg, Volume 3).
  • Werner Jochmann: The Hamburg trade in the 13th and 14th centuries , Hamburg 1948, DNB 480209367 (Dissertation University of Hamburg, Philosophical Faculty, February 3, 1949, 131 counted, 25 uncounted sheets with pasted images and graphic representations, 4 [typewriter]) .
  • with Ursula Büttner : Hamburg on the way to the Third Reich. Development years 1931–1933. State Center for Political Education, Hamburg 1983.


  • Ursula Büttner : Werner Jochmann. A look back at the tenth anniversary of death. In: Zeitgeschichte in Hamburg , Vol. 2, 2004, pp. 11–13.
  • Ursula Büttner: Jochmann, Werner. In: Hamburgische Biografie , Vol. 1, ed. by Franklin Kopitzsch and Dirk Brietzke , Hamburg 2001, pp. 150–151, ISBN 3-7672-1364-8 .
  • Ursula Büttner: Werner Jochmann's work as head of the research center for the history of National Socialism. In this. (Ed.), Das Unrechtsregime. International research on National Socialism, Vol. 1, Hamburg 1986, pp. XV – XXVII, ISBN 3-7672-0962-4 (Hamburg contributions to social and contemporary history, Vol. 21).
  • Stefanie Schüler-Springorum : Werner Jochmann and German-Jewish history . In: Zeitgeschichte in Hamburg , Vol. 2, 2004, pp. 14-20.

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Died. Werner Jochmann . In: Der Spiegel No. 48, November 28, 1994.