Themes/The Helpers’ Circle around Otto Weidt/Werner Scharff and the Community for Peace and Reconstruction

Werner Scharff and the Community for Peace and Reconstruction

Werner Scharff, born in 1912, worked as an electrician in Berlin. He married Gertrud Weissmann in 1938. The Scharffs, who were Jewish, were unable to emigrate as planned. In 1941 Werner Scharff started working as an electrician at the deportation assembly point in Levetzowstraße. He helped Jews held in custody by smuggling in food and valuables from their apartments, which had already been sealed off. Werner Scharff and Otto Weidt met through Hans Rosenthal.

Werner and Gertrud Scharff went into hiding on June 10, 1943. Six weeks later, on July 14, Werner Scharff was discovered and deported to Theresienstadt Ghetto. He managed to escape from there on September 7, 1943 and returned to Berlin.

In 1943 he met Hans Winkler, with whom he set up a resistance organization, Community for Peace and Reconstruction. The group supported Jews in hiding and produced and distributed leaflets calling for resistance against the Nazi regime.

In October 1944 the Gestapo arrested some members of the group, including Werner Scharff. On March 16, 1945 Werner Scharff was shot in Sachsenhausen concentration camp with two other Jewish members of the group. Gertrud Scharff managed to stay in hiding in Berlin, and survived the war.

Werner Scharff