16th Location: Ortstr. 5

Wilhelm Dieckmann

Wilhelm Dieckmann was born in Minden, 1st October, 1858, the son of the craftsman Heinrich  Dieckmann and his wife Friedrieke Dieckmann nee´ Rohde. He had a second christian name, Heinrich. The family lived, at that time, in the house Minden 520 which is, today, Umradstrasse 5.

Wilhelm was christened  a Protestant. His  occupation  was that of  baker’s assistent. He later lived at Ortstrasse 5 and on 18th June, 1901, married the seamstress, Auguste Dorothee Emma Schutze, in Hannover. The couple had two daughters, Emma and Lina, but then they divorced on 19th June, 1913.

At the end of 1940 Wilhelm Dieckmann found himself in the Minden hospital. The doctor treating him wrote a  report saying that, for several years, he had shown signs of  mental disease and needed to be treated in a sanatorium. He suffered from dementia and was admitted to the Province Sanatorium at Guetersloh on 16th January, 1941, and stayed there until October, 1943. His Guetersloh Sanatorium medical file certified arterio sclerotic dementia. The record described him as being totally confused, bewildered, frail, and an invalid. At the sa16_Wilhelm Dieckmannme time he was usually quiet, friendly, accessible and easy to handle. In August, 1942, he suffered paralysis of the lower extremitys and was consequently confined to bed.

On 14th  October, 1943, he was transferred  to the district sanatorium in Warte, where he arrived on  collective transport from Guetersloh. Warta in Poland belonged to the so called, Wartheland Area under German occupation. The sanatorium that existed there, worked towards the objectives of the national socialist euthanasia programm and had been converted to one of  the extermination establishments, where patients from the empire were sent to be murdered to plan. The euthanasia campaign were officially brought to an end in 1941, but were unofficially carried out until the end of the war. There are, even today, no exact figures as to the number of victims, but we must assume that more than 200.000 sick, disabled or social conspicuous persons from homes, sanatoriums and hospitals were murdered.

Wilhelm Dieckmann, like several other sick people from Minden, was one of that number. He died in Warta on 29th October, 1943, two weeks after arriving  there. The circumstances are not known but the death certificate  cites  ‘old age’.