Center for
              White Rose
               Studies

February 22, 1943

Following are the events of February 22, 1943 on the basis of Ruth Sachs' research as of December 31, 2004.

  • Early in the morning, Traute Lafrenz and Werner Scholl leave for Munich. The Scholl parents decide to take a later train.
  • 8 am is the deadline for the defendants to enter a plea and present evidence in their case. Also at this time, Hans and Sophie Scholl and Christoph Probst are formally expelled from the university.
  • Around 9 am, Hans, Sophie, and Christl are taken from the prison to the Justizpalast (Palace of Justice). The trial "officially" starts at 9 am, but the judges, defendants, and attorneys are not there at that time.
  • 9:30 am, Judges Freisler and Stier (the two primary judicial players) arrive by train in Munich.
  • 10 am, the trial begins.
  • Robert Mohr and the other Gestapo agents appear in court in accordance with the subpoena to give testimony against the defendants.
  • Around 10:30, Leo Samberger is buying cigarettes outside the courthouse and accidentally learns that the trial is starting. He immediately goes inside and takes up a position at the rear of the courtroom.
  • The prosecution decides not to call any witnesses, because all three defendants plead guilty. However, they do present evidence such as the typewriters and duplicating machine and call the head of the forensics department to testify.
  • The record notes that the actual trial proceedings begin at 11 am.
  • Christoph Probst is hidden from the spectators' view during the trial. Hans Scholl nearly faints.
  • Judge Freisler adjourns for lunch around 11:30 am.
  • During the lunch break, Jakob Schmid enjoys the applause and approbation of the spectators.
  • The Scholl parents arrive at the train station at approximately 12 noon.
  • Around 12:30 pm, the prosecution's sentencing requests begin.
  • Robert and Magdalena Scholl burst into the courtroom just as Hans and Sophie's defense attorney is making his weak closing statement ("May justice be done"). Robert Scholl demands to speak with the defense attorney and then with Judge Freisler. He asks to be allowed to present a defense for his children.
  • Judge Freisler has Gestapo agents remove the Scholl parents from the courtroom. Leo Samberger follows them and waits outside with them until court is adjourned.
  • Hans, Sophie, and Christoph are "allowed" to make a final statement.
  • Trials ends around 12:40 pm, with death sentences for all three defendants.
  • Leo Samberger talks to the Scholl parents about filing a clemency petition. They leave for the DA's office.
  • 1 pm, all evidence is removed from the courtroom and appropriated by the People's Court for its use.
  • Robert Scholl and Leo Samberger work on the clemency petition with the DA's secretary. It is filed around 2 pm. Leo Samberger gives Robert Scholl his telephone number should he need additional help.
  • A Nazi Beamtin and friend notifies Josef Söhngen of increased surveillance at the train station and advises him not to flee.
  • Robert Scholl's request to meet with the Executive DA is denied. The DA tells him he should go visit his children as soon as possible.
  • Around 2:15 pm, Hans Scholl sees his parents. His final loving words are for Josef Söhngen.
  • About fifteen minutes later, the Scholl parents visit with Sophie.
  • While Sophie is talking to her parents, Robert Mohr goes to Stadelheim Prison. He runs into Hans, who purportedly (according to Mohr!) thanks him for treating Sophie so well. (Questionable.)
  • Also questionable: Sophie refuses the straw that Mohr holds out to her ("recant, say it was your brother's fault").
  • 4 pm, Sophie is advised that she will not be pardoned, with the same news given to Hans and Christoph in rapid succession. It is an official announcement that is witnessed (both chaplains witnessed the event), signed and placed in their files.
  • The prison chaplains visit the condemned. Christl Probst is baptized into the Catholic faith and receives last rites. Aware that the chaplains are Gestapo moles, Sophie implicates Gisela Schertling in her final conversation with Chaplain Alt.
  • 5 pm, Sophie Scholl is executed (beheaded), followed by Hans ("Long live freedom!") and Christoph.
  • Robert Scholl - unaware of his children's death - calls Leo Samberger and asks him to join them for dinner at Humplmayr's Restaurant.
  • 6:30 pm, Leo joins the Scholls (Robert, Magdalena, and Werner only) and Traute Lafrenz for dinner. Robert Scholl asks him to prepare a clemency petition for Christoph Probst that can be taken to Herta Probst for signature the next morning. While they are still at Humplmayr's, Leo hears from a friend in the restaurant that the executions had been announced on the radio. He chooses not to tell the Scholls.
  • 6:50 pm, a telex is sent to Berlin advising that the executions had taken place.

(c) 2004 by Ruth Hanna Sachs. All rights reserved. Please contact Ruth for permission to quote.

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