Christoph Hermann Probst (born 6 November 1918, Murnau am Staffelsee – 22 February 1943, Munich) was a German student of medicine and member of the White Rose (Weiße Rose) resistance group. White Rose was the name of a resistance group in Munich in the time of the Third Reich. The group, founded in June 1942, consisted of students from the Ludwig-Maximilians-University of Munich who distributed leaflets against the Nazis’ war policy. Christoph Probst belonged, along with the Scholl siblings, Willi Graf and Alexander Schmorell to the tightest circle, into which university professor Kurt Huber also came. The members of White Rose put together, printed and distributed, at the risk of their lives, six leaflets in all. On 18 February 1943, the Scholls were distributing the sixth leaflet at the university when they were discovered by a custodian, who delivered them to the Gestapo. On 22 February 1943, Christoph Probst and the Scholls were tried and sentenced together at the Volksgerichtshof by judge Roland Freisler, who was known for often determining sentences even before the trial, and all three were sentenced to death by guillotine. Their sentences were carried out on the very same day at Stadelheim Prison in Munich. Their grave may be found in the graveyard bordering the execution place, “Am Perlacher Forst”.
Through his father, Hermann Probst, Christoph Probst came to know cultural and religious freedom, and to treasure them. Hermann Probst was a private scholar and Sanskrit researcher, fostered contacts with artists who were deemed by the Nazis to be “decadent”. After his first marriage with Karin Katharina Kleeblatt, Christoph’s mother, broke up in 1919, he married Elise Jaffée, who was Jewish. Christoph’s sister, Angelika, remembers that her brother was strongly critical of Nazi ideas that violated human dignity. Probst went to boarding school at Marquartstein and Landheim Schondorf, which was also not conducive to fostering Nazi German ideas, and at 17, he matriculated. After military service, he began his medical studies with great earnestness. Aged 21, he married Herta Dohrn, with whom he had three children: Michael, Vincent and Katja.
Christoph Probst came rather late into the White Rose as he did not belong to the same student corps as Hans Scholl, Alexander Schmorell and Willi Graf, and stayed for the most part in the background, as he had to think of his family. He did not write any of the White Rose’s leaflets, only the design for the seventh one which Hans Scholl was carrying with him when he and his sister Sophie went to the university on 18 February 1943 to distribute leftover copies of the sixth leaflet. When the Scholl siblings were arrested at the University of Munich, the Gestapo acquired proof against Christoph Probst. Before his execution he requested to be and was baptized by a Roman Catholic priest. He was executed on 22 February 1943, along with Hans and Sophie Scholl, despite asking for clemency during interrogation. He also requested a trial for the sake of his wife and three children, who were aged three years, two years and four weeks old. His wife, Herta Probst, was sick with childbed fever at the time.
- November, 06, 1919
- Murnau am Staffelsee, Germany
- February, 22, 1943
- Munich, Germany
Cause of Death
- execution by beheading
- Friedhof am Perlacher Forst
- Munich, Germany