Biedermann, Karl.

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Biedermann, Karl, born 11-08-1890 in Miskolc, Austria-Hungary after a visit to the cadet corps in Traiskirchen, Karl Biedermann served in the common army from 1910. In the First World War he served as an officer. He was released from the Bundesheer (1. Republic) in 1920 with the rank of Hauptmann. His civil occupation was official of the “Österreichische Postsparkasse” (Austrian postal savings bank). In February 1934, Biedermann was commander of a company of the “Freiwilligen Schutzkorps”, consisting of units from Heimwehr and auxiliary troops of the Bundesheer. In this position he took part in the capture of Vienna Karl-Marx-Hof during the Austrian Civil War. Karl-Marx-Hof was well known during the February Uprising (German: Februaraufstand) of the 1934 Austrian Civil War  Those insurgents engaged in the revolt barricaded themselves inside the building and were forced to surrender after the Austrian army, the police, and the Austrofascist paramilitary Heimwehr bombarded the site regardless of the unarmed dwellers, mainly worker families, with light artillery. During the Anschluss, Karl-Marx-Hof was renamed Heiligenstädter Hof, but took its original name back in 1945.

The Heimwehr / ’Home Guard’) or Heimatschutz  ’Homeland Protection’) were a nationalist, initially paramilitary group operating within Austria during the 1920s and 1930s; they were similar in methods, organisation, and ideology to . Although opposed to parliamentary democracy, the Heimwehr maintained a political wing known as the Heimatblock (Homeland Bloc), which cooperated with chanccelor Engelbert Dollfuss

conservative government. In 1936, the Heimwehr was absorbed into the Fatherland Front by decree of Chancellor Kurt von Schuschnigg and replaced by a militia supposedly less inclined towards uproar against the regime, the Frontmiliz.

After the Anschluss to Nazi Germany in March 1938, Biedermann joined the Wehrmacht. In 1940 he was promoted to Major. During World War II, he took part in the Battle of France, the Balkans Campaign and the Eastern Front.

Biedermann joined the resistance group of the Austrian Wehrmacht led by Major Carl Szokoll in Military District II. In the spring of 1945, this group planned “Operation Radetzky”, to support the Red Army in the liberation of Vienna and to prevent further destruction, to prevent the blowing up of bridges.

Death and burial ground of Biedermann, Karl.

However, “Operation Radetzky”, scheduled for 06-04-1945, was discovered. Biedermann was arrested on the night of 5-6 April 1945 and court-martialed at Drumhead and sentenced to death. On 08-04-1945, age 53, Biedermann was hanged in public at Floridsdorfer Spitz in Vienna, along with two other resistance fighters, Hauptmann Alfred Huth and Oberleutnant Rudolf Raschke. The Austrian Chief of “Sicheitspolizei and SD”, SS Standarteführer Rudolf Mildner personally took command of the hanging place. Rudolf Midner in June 1944, after a short period as Deputy Chief of Amte IVA and IVB at RSHA HQ, was sent to back to Vienna to head the SD office there. Russian troops were about to capture Vienna and he fled to Linz where US troops captured him in May 1945. He was lucky since the Russians would have hanged him!He was held in US custody until 1949 in Nuremberg. After his release he fled and disappeared to Argentina. Last seen in Egypt in 1963 where he is believed to have converted to Islam!

Karl Biedermann was buried on 02-08-1945 in Vienna at the cemetery Hietzingen in an honorable grave (Section 66, Row 19, Number 5). Hauptmann Alfred Huth and Oberleutnant Rudolf Raschke were also buried in the same grave. Inscription tombstone “Died for Austria”.

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