Otto Pfromm and Katharina Sch


Otto Pfromm and Katharina Sch


Katharina Sch and Otto Pfromm's account of the events at Klosterstraße 6 and Wildemannsgasse 11.



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Spatial Coverage





IBCC Digital Archive


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Record 73


Translated from the original in German: Present is the window cleaner Otto Pfromm, born 3 November 1879, formerly of Fliegengasse 17, and his daughter, Mrs Katharina Sch., née Pfromm, born 19 February 1907, and make the following statement:
We are looking for the daughter Hildegard Sch., born 12 May 1928.
Our Hildegard was doing her mandatory year of service at Holzmarkt. She came home (Klosterstraße 6) from work, it was just before eight. She said to me: “Mum, I would first like to go and see my friend.” (Hedwig Böhmer, died too, of Wildemannsgasse 11) Since then, I have not seen anything of my daughter. Then the alarm came. So I took my other children, Heinrich, Klara and Wilhelm, and went to the shelter in Fliegengasse. Grandpa was a troop leader in that shelter. I shouted: “We must have peace and quiet in here!” Because as you know, during such a raid, you can imagine how it is when there are women and children. After the raid the shelter leader ordered: “Everyone vacate the building!” So people all left about half nine.
We all made our way along the Fulda, went up at the Schlagd to the Rondell. That’s where we stood, the three children with us, until the next morning. We did not see a woman with someone else’s child on her arm. There were so many people that you could not pay attention to them all. The Courts of Justice and the Renthof were ablaze. The fire engine von Münden at the land registry office was pumping water from the Fulda and directed it at the land registry. About seven in the morning we walked to Friedrichsplatz. We passed the Courts on the left and went up where the theatre is. Here, on Friedrichsplatz, lay the dead and the wounded and doctors were there to bandage those who were injured. Ambulances came and took people away, in all directions. A truck took us to Oberzwehren. It was good there, we immediately got something decent to eat. Vegetables with noodles, it was top quality. The National Socialist Welfare Organisation treated us well. My face was black with soot. Then we were taken to Guxhagen and from there by train to Bebra. Now we loge in Iba with farmer Knierim (no 143). We are very comfortable there. The people there treat us well.
Then we went to the missing persons department in the town hall and inquired after the Böhmers. That’s where we heard that the Böhmers were in Oberkaufungen. And when we got there, we were told: “They are now in Witzenhausen.” So were travelled to Witzenhausen to get news of our Hildegard. (Her father was killed in action two years ago in Russia.) We spoke with Mr Böhmer himself. He told us: “I saw that everything was on fire. The air raid warden said: ‘If you go out, you do so at your own risk.’ I said: ‘Out, now!’ I had taken three children with me and my wife and your Hildegard. We went through Hinter der Waage because there was no fire yet. That was shortly after the raid. But when I turned round, the two friends had disappeared, Hildegard and my daughter Hedwig.” He then went with the others across the Fulda Bridge, along Bettenhäuser Straße, past the prison to Hafenstraße. “Here we were put on vehicles and taken to Oberkaufungen. I suffered burns on my hands and ears when I pulled the girls from the burning house (Wildemannsgasse 11). I saw the two girls for the last time Hinter der Waage.”
Our Hildegard knew that we always went to the shelter. Mrs Hedwig Böhmer, the grandmother of the Hedwig who was killed, knows a woman from the old town (they share a billet in Ronshausen no 19). This woman, whom we did not know, we met on the train this morning. She told us: “I know both of the missing girls. Hedwig had shouted ‘Daddy’ and ‘Mum’.” Her father claims to have heard that. A boy, whose name we don’t know, claims to have seen our Hildegard alone on Königstraße, on the upper part. Another woman, Mrs Dornermann, formerly from the Junkers plant, told us that she had seen our little Hildegard lying unconscious on a stretcher. That was on the sports ground. From that point on we have no trace of her.
We believe the following: Our Hildegard was looking for us. When she did not find us, she wandered around in the burning city and ended up injured or with burns on the sports ground.
We don’t think that she is dead. Maybe she has been taken to a military hospital in the Sudetenland just as many others. And because she thinks we were all killed, she isn’t coming forward. She also has not contacted my brother in Sandershausen, the tax official Pfromm. Maybe she’s been put up with a farmer and he has not registered her so that the child is not on the lists.


Vermisstensuchstelle des Oberbürgermeisters der Stadt Kassel, “Otto Pfromm and Katharina Sch,” IBCC Digital Archive, accessed September 30, 2022,

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