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Wilhelmine Schelle

Other names: Minna[F6B]


A women's movement activist, and writer, she was the daughter of Alexander Schelle (1804–74, pastor in Freyenstein and son of Johann Christian Julius Schelle, pastor in Groß-Mühlingen) and of Juliane Wolfschmidt (†1887), and sister of Ludwig, a Prussian general. Her first husband was August Latzel (†1866, a doctor). Their son died in 1866 aged two. In 1867 she passed a teaching exam, and after a year as a teacher in Paris, she followed her second husband to Berlin, where he had been appointed on a city school council. At 40 years of age and widowed for a second time, she began to devote herself to the historical study of the lives of women. It was not until 1888 that she, after the founding of the 'Frauenwohl' association which she led until 1919, joined the the women's movement. In 1889 she joined the board of the newly founded Commercial Aid Society for Female Employees, and from 1895 she published the magazine Women's Movement. She became established as the leader of a left wing of the bourgeois women's movement which strove above all for the political concerns of the woman. Still in the First World War and after 1918, she fearlessly preserved her independent political opinion. In 1915, she protested against the boycott of the Hague International Women's Congress by the League of German Women's Associations, and in 1919, against the rejection of the Treaty of Versailles. She campaigned to keep in Upper Silesia within Germany's border, but she had to witness its transfer to Poland, and the murder of her friend Walter Rathenau.[F6B]

Place of birth: Freyenstein[F6B]
Place of second marriage: Freyenstein[F6B]
Place of death: Berlin[F6B]



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