In the early twentieth century, Magnus Hirschfeld played an important role in the development of the concept of homosexuality in Germany and far beyond. In his “Institut für Sexualwissenschaft” in Berlin, he and his close colleagues received hundreds of people who wanted information and advice about their sexual life and preferences.
On February 22, 1943, the twenty-four-year-old Hans Scholl, his twenty-one-year-old sister Sophie, and their twenty-three-year-old fellow fighter Christoph Probst were executed by means of guillotine as members of the White Rose resistance group by the Nazi regime.
Between June 27 and July 12, 1942, four pamphlets were distributed by post under several hundred “carefully chosen” people in Germany. The anonymous pamphlets, in rather high-spirited and highly intellectual prose full of quotes from well-known German poets, called for passive opposition to Adolf Hitler.
None of the remaining documents about the Stijkel group mention homosexuality, nor their personal lives. Schorer was extremely cautious and discreet in mentioning other homosexuals, as it was something one had better kept a secret. He does refer to other members of the Stijkel group who also were “like that,” but we can only guess. Again, we know nothing.
“That he (= the homosexual), out of love for the fatherland and for his fellow man was no less involved in bygone war years is more than clearly evident. There are, among other things, numerous accounts of persons in hiding being taken in and helped on by homosexuals. I know of numerous examples, one of which involves no less than eight Jewish countrymen being taken in by a homosexual couple, hidden and cared for, while putting their own lives at risk."