Leopoldine B.
"Without historical value…"

Leopoldine B. was born in 1914 as an illegitimate child in Bad Ischl. She attended a convent school, and moved to Vienna with her husband when she was eighteen. From 1933 onwards, she lived together with her new partner Franz N. That same year, she was sentenced to ten days of detention for "secret prostitution". Her daughter was born in 1935. From the summer of 1938 onwards, she regularly met Marie H. Through a Jewish friend she got to know Anni Z. a year later. In April 1940, she was arrested on suspicion of "Rassenschande" (the Nazi term for sexual relations with a non-Aryan). At the local police station, she was also questioned about her intimate relationships with women. Together with Marie H. and Anni Z. she was charged according to Paragraph129lb (which criminalized same-sex relationships). On October 22nd, 1940, the provincial court condemned her to six months of harsh imprisonment. Shortly before her release, the criminal police requested her criminal record, intending to deport her to a concentration camp.

The dispute on the punishment of same-sex relationships of women 1938/39

Unlike in Germany, lesbians were prosecuted in Austria. With the takeover of the National Socialists in Austria, the question became imminent whether lesbian "actions" were still to be punished. Opponents argued that most women were only "seduced", while their "ability to reproduce" remained unimpaired. Advocates such as the Viennese criminal law expert Roland Grassberger and Reich Minister Hans Frank, held to the criminal persecution of female homosexuality. After the "Anschluss" (euphemism for the entry of Austria into the German Reich), jurisdiction was not standardized. In Austria, lesbian sexuality remained a punishable offence even after 1938.