The White Rose - History

The White Rose is a story that's well known in Germany, but not in the rest of the world. It's the true story of a group of college students who started a resistance movement in Nazi Germany. Although it was ultimately unsuccessful, the White Rose movement had a tremendous effect on the country, and this small group of idealistic college students became heroes.

They could have kept quiet, simply waited for the regime to be over. They weren't Jewish. Their lives weren't in danger. But something in them wouldn't allow silence. So they started by printing leaflets denouncing Hitler and urging resistance. They traveled to cities all over Germany to distribute their words. They painted anti-Nazi slogans along the streets of Munich. They did everything they could - in a time and place when acts like these seemed impossible. In the end, they were. Almost all of the members of The White Rose were caught and executed.

After the executions, Allied forces flew over Germany dropping copies of the final White Rose leaflet rather than bombs. Leaflets fell on cities of people living in silent fear. Leaflets fell on towns full of mothers mourning sons lost at the Russian front. Leaflets fell on concentration camps. The White Rose didn't come close to overthrowing the Nazi government, but they accomplished something else very important. They gave people hope. The hope that there are still good people in the world, people willing to risk everything to defend their beliefs. And in those desperate times, this was huge.


Here are a few good White Rose links we've found:

The White Rose movement on Wikipedia
Photo gallery of places connected to The White Rose, as they look today.
Educational site about the holocaust featuring a section on The White Rose.
Photo of The White Rose exhibit at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
The White Rose leaflets and partial court transcripts (in English)