Wiegel, Heinz


Wiegel, Heinz
Heinz Wiegel


Heinz Wiegel's account of the events at Luisenstraße 9 and Große Rosenstraße 21.



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Record 13


Translated from the original in German: Present is the sculptor Heinz Wiegel (Lance Corporal) and makes the following statement:
I must start by explaining that our house had already been hit by incendiaries during the air raid of the night of 27 August 1941. The neighbouring house towards Murhard-straße and the corner house opposite towards Murhard-straße were burnt out. Our upper floor had to be rebuilt. The construction waste from the renovation stayed there. It made it easier to put out two incendiaries later. We also had iron doors up there. Our house was hit by five incendiaries and two smaller canisters with phosphorous. One burnt down to the second floor, it had probably entered through a window on the third floor. A ceramic bowl stood on our table, it had sand in it and because of that I could throw the filth out.
On the evening in question were sitting in the living room. My father was also there. The wireless stopped. I said to my wife: there will be an alarm. She took the suitcases and my father went on his way home to Große Rosenstraße 21. That’s where he died. We, my wife and daughter, ran to the cellar. Women and children were already there and a paymaster. Then incendiaries fell in quick succession and then a blockbuster at Luisenplatz. Then the lights went out and an explosive dropped on Murhardstraße and the tooth gap [an empty plot]. I could hear and smell that something wasn’t right. I ran through all the flats and tore the nets from the windows because the shower of sparks had already started. It came in from the burning houses around us. I went up to the attic. On the fourth floor, where Mrs Nitsche lived, I put the fire out together with Mrs N. Her toilet was on fire. I put the incendiary out. The air raid warden Schlotzhauer fought the fire on the third floor. A Mr Möller, and my wife too, brought water and then I went up to the attic. A couple of light canisters had fallen into a corner of the roof. I put them out with water. Then a fire was burning through from the ceiling of the third floor. An old chest was standing there and I got up on that chest and chucked water from half-filled buckets on the fire. I also went into the little room next to it. I brought the ceiling down with a broom handle because in the corner the fire from the house next door was coming through. I don’t know how long that took. I remember though that I was wishing for number 7 to burn down.
The church burned like a flaming torch. The old barracks too. The shower of sparks was intense. We saved the house in the fight against the fire. I had smoke poisoning. The Hitler Youth put a fire guard into our house. My wife took me to the Red Cross as I had lost my sight but it was restored there. The following day we travelled to the Blue Lake because I couldn’t bear the air [in Kassel]. Our house started burning again but soldiers put the fires out.
On reverse of the page:
My father died that night. I have been told the following by eyewitnesses: My father must have arrived in Große Rosenstraße at the start of the raid. The incendiaries in the house were put out with my brother-in-law’s help. One canister [dropped] in the shop, another at the front door, everything was on fire. At that point several people from the house threw their buckets away and took off. In the house next door [Text becomes incoherent and then stops.]


Vermisstensuchstelle des Oberbürgermeisters der Stadt Kassel, “Wiegel, Heinz ,” IBCC Digital Archive, accessed June 17, 2024, https://ibccdigitalarchive.lincoln.ac.uk/omeka/collections/document/7473.

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