Following the advent of the National Socialist regime in the year 1938, more than 2,700 mostly Jewish affiliates of the University of Vienna were dismissed and subsequently driven away and/or murdered - lecturers, students and administration employees. Furthermore, over 200 people were stripped of their academic titles.
In 2008, 70 years after the so-called "Anschluss" [annexation] and the pogroms of what came to be cynically called the "Kristallnacht" [Crystal Night], the University of Vienna commemorates this injustice and  ...


Josef Gerö

  • Born: 09-23-1896
  • Faculty: Faculty of Law
  • Category: deprivation of academic degree

Josef GEROE, born on September 23rd, 1896 in Subotica/Szabadka/Maria-Theresiopel, Hungary, Austro-Hungarian Empire [Subotica, Serbia], deceased on December 28th, 1954 in Vienna, was awarded his LL. D. [Doctor of Laws] from the School of Law of the University of Vienna on December 24th, 1920. After serving in World War I, he joined the judicial system. He served as a public prosecutor first in Wiener Neustadt (1927 – 1929) and then in Vienna (1929 – 1934). In 1934, under Austrofascist rule, he became Head of the Political Department of the Federal Ministry of Justice; in 1936 he was appointed First Public Prosecutor.

On April 1st, 1938 he was deported to the Dachau concentration camp, later to be transferred to Buchenwald. He was released after six months’ detention; he moved to Zagreb, Yugoslavia, where he became authorized signatory of a textiles company. He was arrested once more by the Gestapo in 1941, but subsequently released as innocent. He returned to Vienna in 1944, to take over the position of an export manager in a silk factory. On July 17th, 1942 he was divested of his academic title on racial grounds, because under national-socialist rules he, as a Jew, was deemed "unworthy of an academic title awarded by a German university".

On July 20th, 1945, 3 years after he had been divested of it and after the end of National-Socialism, his Ph. D. was officially reinstated, or the divestiture declared "null and void to begin with". He was thus the first person whose academic credentials, rescinded on racial grounds under National-Socialist rule, were reinstated.
On April 27th, 1945 he became an independent State Secretary (and subsequently Federal Minister) of Justice until 1949, then again between 1952 and 1954. From 1949 until 1952 he served as President of the Regional Court of Appeals. Furthermore, he was President of the Vienna Football Club from 1927 till 1938, President of the Austrian Football Federation from 1945 to the end of his life and from 1946 onwards President of the Austrian Olympic Committee, as well.

Lit.: Archive of the University of Vienna/graduation registry ("Promotionsprotokoll") IUR 1920–1924 Nr. 555, rectorate GZ 118 ex 1941/42 Nr. 52, GZ 1622 ex 1939/40/41 Nr. 1, GZ 561 ex 1944/45 Nr. 6; Deutscher Reichsanzeiger Nr. 182 from August 7th, 1941; POSCH 2009, 271f., 416f.; POSCH/STADLER 2005, 31; information from his granddaughter rector Mag. Eva Blimlinger, Vienna 07/2018

Herbert Posch


Josef Gerö, about 1946, © Bildachiv Austria, OeNB, US 11720Josef Gerö, about 1946, © Bildach...
state funeral for secretary a.D. Dr. Josef Gerö, 1954state funeral for secretary a.D. Dr...

zuletzt aktualisiert am 25.11.2021

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