Erna abstract in english a










Family - Childhood - School

Erna will be 2 weeks before

Christmas on December 12th

1922 in "Senne II" (today

"Bielefeld-Sennestadt") - near

the Station "Kracks" - born.

She is the 11th and youngest


The Kronshage family lives and

works on a farm in the Senne

countryside between Bielefeld

and Paderborn - Germany.

The father works half day as a

carpenter in a factory.

This is the farmhouse,

in the Erna Kronshage

is born

and later works.

This is how the house looks


On this family photo of

about 1930 you can see

Erna as 2nd from the left


As the youngest and

smallest in the family

Erna is "educated" by her

older siblings.

Erna is the "nest-hook"

and will surely spoiled ...

Erna is a good


Learning is fun.

This is how it looks

in 1935 in a

school class.

Work as a "house-daughter"

After school, Erna works as a

"house-daughter" at home on the


"House-daughter" was then an

activity for young women - up to

their own wedding.

Erna now has to work alone with

her parents on the farm.

The brothers become soldiers

because the war has begun - and

the older sisters now have their

own families.

She must reap potatoes.

And washes in the fountain

behind the house.

Suddenly, in the spring of 1940, the war

reached the Senne.

A lonely English pilot throws his bombs on a

large stately farm just 100 meters from Erna.

Erna is shocked because a neighbor of the

same age dies.

From the large family

Kronshage with the 10

siblings becomes a small

family, because Erna now

lives alone with the parents

at home.

She feels lonely.

She is longing for friends of

the same age with whom

she can chat.

Her parents are over forty

years older than she is.

For her alone the work is

too heavy.

She wants to go on holiday

and relax.

Transfer to "Heilanstalt" Gütersloh

In October 1942, however, Erna Kronshage refused her

cooperation on the farm.

She curses with the parents and has no desire. She wants to

recover, because she feels ashamed of the heavy work.

Erna's mother must now report this sudden refusal to work

at a farmers' farm - this "blue-making" - a community nurse

- a so-called "Brown NS sister".

The "Brown Sister" ensures that Erna has to go

to a medical examination in the health office.

Here, Erna herself asks the doctor to come to

the Heilanstalt to Gütersloh to recover there

again in order to be able to work again.

A sister of Ernas had been briefly treated

there. She had recovered well after a

breakdown in 4 weeks there.

Erna also wanted to do the same to get fit

again - and she also wants to be treated

against the will of her parents.

The Gütersloh "Heilanstalt" was at that time a

"health factory" - consisting of several hospitals and

homes - with well over 1000 mentally disturbed


Nazi doctors and nurses have the say.

There are separate areas of women and men.

In Gütersloh the doctors perform an initial examination


Erna is excited. Such a situation makes them afraid.

But the Nazi doctors judge Erna's refusal to work on the

farm and their behavioral disorder as a severe mental

disorder called "schizophrenia."

• In this disorder reality, dream or imagination can no

longer be distinguished. Everything flows into one


• The real or imaginary experiences are scattered in a

schizophrenia as in many small pieces.

• Often you hear voices or even commands - but no one

actually speaks, and these are fantasies.

Erna is divided into a potato peeling group and

a working group in horticulture - she already

knows her from home.

In addition to the employment offer, artificially

epileptic convulsions are triggered to the

internal stress relief in people with


This is done with the "cardiacol", which is

injected into the arm flexion.

Afterwards, Erna feels completely dull and

confused and can hardly remember anything.

Forced sterilization

At the beginning of 1943, the director

of the Heilanstalt in Gütersloh applied

for a "sterility" according to the

"Hereditary Health Law", since

"schizophrenia" was then called

"hereditary disease".

The father, however, submits several


But Erna Kronshage became "sterile"

after the decision of the Hereditary

Health Court in Hamm on 4 August

1943 in Gütersloh.

Due to an intervention in the

abdomen, Erna can no longer become

pregnant and does not get any


Deportation to the

"Heilanstalt" Tiegenhof near Gnesen

in the German occupied Poland

Emotionally disturbed people are "useless eaters" for the Nazis, who only

cost money - but bring nothing.

From 1939, Hitler had "ordered a brief trial" with them that these people

should be killed.

He pretends her death is best for her.

According to questionnaires, the people are selected for such a murder:

This includes 3 things:

• Who is the patient?

• How strong is the disease or disability?

• Can and will he work?

These murders are called "euthanasia" - the word comes from the Greek -

which means "beautiful death" in German.

In Gütersloh, patients are now

named who are now surplus

because their beds are needed

for war bombs:

Erna Kronshage is with 99 copatients

and has to leave


On 12.11.1943 she goes into a

special train over Hanover and

Berlin to the "Heilanstalt"

Tiegenhof - 630 km away -

near the city of Gnesen in

occupied Poland.


Tiegenhof near

Gnesen – Poland

Original name before the

German occupation:


• Aerial photo of the

institute area

• Main house on a

jubilee book from


• Typical patient

pavilion in Dziekanka

"Euthanasia" murder

Patients arriving in

Tiegenhof are

treated with a killing

recipe from fat-free

foods with the help

of sleeping pills.

Erna Kronshage was killed on 20 February 1944 in Tiegenhof / Gnesen.

From the day of the arrival of Gütersloh to her death in the Tiegenhof it takes exactly 100 days ...

At the request of the parents the body Erna

Kronshages is moved to Senne II.

For this purpose, the coffin is approached 600

kilometers in a pack wagon of the Reichsbahn to

the shunting tracks of the station "Kracks".

The family secretly opens the coffin and notes

that no traces of violence are visible on the


On March 5, 1944, Erna Kronshage was buried in

the old cemetery in Senne II, today Sennestadt,

in the family grave.

Text of the newspaper's mourning reminder: far away from home suddenly and unexpectedly after a long, serious illness, our dear daughter, sister, sister-in-law, aunt,

cousin, and niece -ERNA- died at the age of twenty-two. Adolf Kronshage and Ms Anna, née Kleinebekel, are all deeply saddened by this. Senne II, Sende, Schildesche,

Elbing and in the field, in March 1944. Burial 5 March, in the afternoon 3 pm, from the funeral home, Senne II 6.


On 6 December 2012 a

"Stolperstein" is placed near the

birthplace of Erna Kronshage.

In the "Room of Names" the 1017

victims, who were sent from here to

the killing institutes, are thought of

in the hospital chapel in Gütersloh.

Click here:

ERNA – Wikipedia (german)


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