Nina Schenk Gräfin von Stauffenberg

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Nina Schenk Gräfin von Stauffenberg
Born Magdalena von Lerchenfeld
(1913-08-27)August 27, 1913
Kowno, Russian Empire
Died April 2, 2006(2006-04-02) (aged 92)
Kirchlauter, near Bamberg, Bavaria
Nationality German
Known for Wife of Claus von Stauffenberg
Children Berthold Maria Schenk Graf von Stauffenberg
Franz-Ludwig Schenk Graf von Stauffenberg
Konstanze von Schulthess

Elisabeth Magdalena "Nina" Schenk Gräfin von Stauffenberg (27 August 1913 – 2 April 2006) was the wife of Colonel Claus Schenk Graf von Stauffenberg, the leader of the failed plot to assassinate Adolf Hitler on 20 July 1944. Following the plot's failure, she was arrested and imprisoned, during which time she delivered her youngest child.

Biography[edit]

Born Magdalena von Lerchenfeld in Kowno, Imperial Russia (now Kaunas, Lithuania), she was known by her nickname "Nina". Her father was the Bavarian nobleman and politician General Consul Gustav Freiherr von Lerchenfeld (1871–1944) and her mother Anna Freiin von Stackelberg (1880–1945), a Baltic-German noblewoman.

Nina von Lerchenfeld first met Claus Schenk Graf von Stauffenberg around 1930.[citation needed] They were married on 26 September 1933 in Bamberg, Bavaria, making Nina the Countess (Gräfin) von Stauffenberg. Although Nina's and Claus von Stauffenberg's mothers were both Lutherans, the couple's children were raised as Roman Catholics, in accordance with the wishes of Stauffenberg's father.

The marriage produced five children:

After her husband's failed attempt to assassinate Hitler – he was summarily executed the following evening – the Countess von Stauffenberg was arrested by the Gestapo and taken into custody under the ancient Sippenhaft law reinstated by the Nazi government. Her five children were placed in an orphanage in Bad Sachsa, Lower Saxony, under the surname of Meister. At the time of her husband's death, Stauffenberg was pregnant and in January 1945 she gave birth to her fifth child, Konstanze, while imprisoned in a Nazi maternity center in Frankfurt an der Oder. That same year, her own mother, Anna, died in a Russian detention camp.

NinaStaufgrave.jpg

By the end of the Second World War, Stauffenberg had been moved to the Italian province of South Tyrol. There she was held as a hostage in return for the redemption of Nazi property. After the war, she was reunited with her family at the Stauffenberg family seat in Lautlingen, Baden-Württemberg. She died in Kirchlauter, near Bamberg, Bavaria, on 2 April 2006 at the age of 92.[citation needed]

The biography Nina Schenk Gräfin von Stauffenberg - Ein Porträt by Konstanze von Schulthess-Rechberg, Stauffenberg's youngest daughter, was published in 2008 (Munich: Pendo Verlag, ISBN 3-85842-652-0 / ISBN 978-3-85842-652-9).

References[edit]

  • (German) Zeller, Eberhard (1994). Oberst Claus Graf Stauffenberg. Ein Lebensbild. Paderborn: Ferdinand Schöningh. ISBN 3-506-79770-0.
  • (German) Steffahn, Harald (2002). Stauffenberg. Hamburg: Rowohlt Taschenbuch Verlag Reinbek. ISBN 3-499-50520-7.
  • (German) Ueberschär, Gerd R. (2004). Stauffenberg. Der 20. Juli 1944. Frankfurt am Main: S. Fischer Verlag. ISBN 3-10-086003-9.
  • (German) Hassel, Fey von, "Niemals sich beugen". dtv.
  • (German) Meding, Dorothee von (1997). Mit dem Mut des Herzens – Die Frauen des 20. Juli. btb Verlag. ISBN 3-442-72171-7.

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Regarding personal names: Gräfin was a title before 1919, but now is regarded as part of the surname. It is translated as Countess. Before the August 1919 abolition of nobility as a legal class, titles preceded the full name when given (Graf Helmuth James von Moltke). Since 1919, these titles, along with any nobiliary prefix (von, zu, etc.), can be used, but are regarded as a dependent part of the surname, and thus come after any given names (Helmuth James Graf von Moltke). Titles and all dependent parts of surnames are ignored in alphabetical sorting. The masculine form is Graf.
  2. ^ Regarding personal names: Freiin was a title before 1919, but now is regarded as part of the surname. It is translated as Baroness. Before the August 1919 abolition of nobility as a legal class, titles preceded the full name when given (Graf Helmuth James von Moltke). Since 1919, these titles, along with any nobiliary prefix (von, zu, etc.), can be used, but are regarded as a dependent part of the surname, and thus come after any given names (Helmuth James Graf von Moltke). Titles and all dependent parts of surnames are ignored in alphabetical sorting. The title is for unmarried daughters of a Freiherr.

External links[edit]