Gottfried Graf von Bismarck-Schönhausen

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Gottfried von Bismarck-Schönhausen
Count Gottfried von Bismarck-Schönhausen
Gottfried Graf von Bismarck-Schönhausen.jpg
Spouse(s) Melanie, Countess of Hoyos
Countess Vendeline von Bismarck-Schönhausen
Countess Barbara von Bismarck-Schönhausen
Count Andreas von Bismarck-Schönhausen
Full name
Gottfried Graf von Bismarck-Schönhausen
Noble family House of Bismarck
Father Herbert von Bismarck
Mother Marguerite, Countess of Hoyos
Born (1901-03-09)9 March 1901
Berlin, German Empire
Died 14 September 1949(1949-09-14) (aged 48)
Verden an der Aller, West Germany

Count Gottfried von Bismarck-Schönhausen (9 March 1901 – 14 September 1949) was a German politician and German Resistance figure.

Born in Berlin, he was a grandson of the Chancellor Otto von Bismarck. He was a member of the Nazi Party and in 1933 he was elected to the Reichstag as a Nazi member. In 1935 he became chairman of the regional council (Regierungspräsident) for Stettin, and later also for Potsdam. He was a friend of the SS leader Heinrich Himmler and by 1944 he held the rank of Brigadeführer (Brigade Leader/Major General) in the SS.

From 1942, however, Bismarck had been opposed to the continuation of World War II, and had made contact with other members of the German aristocracy who were working against the Nazi regime, such as the Berlin police chief Wolf-Heinrich Graf von Helldorf, Colonel Claus Graf von Stauffenberg, and General Friedrich Olbricht with the aim of starting negotiations with the western Allies. He was aware of the preparations for the July 20 plot to assassinate Adolf Hitler, but was not directly involved in it.

After the failure of the plot, Bismarck's connections to the plotters were discovered.[1] He was expelled from the SS and from the Reichstag. Because of his famous name and many powerful connections, however, he escaped the fate of most of the active plotters. He was not arrested until August and he was not tortured. In October he was acquitted of the charges against him by the People's Court, but was nevertheless sent to Sachsenhausen concentration camp, where he was relatively well treated. He was liberated by Soviet forces in April 1945. In September 1949 he and his wife were killed in a car accident in Verden an der Aller near Bremen.

His great-nephew would be named in honor of him.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Tatiana Metternich. Purgatory of Fools. Quadrangle (1976). p. 196f. ISBN 0-8129-0691-8.