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The SS Race and Settlement Main Office, (Rasse- und Siedlungshauptamt der SS, RuSHA), was the organization responsible for "safeguarding the racial 'purity' of the SS" within Nazi Germany.[1] One of its duties was to oversee the marriages of SS personnel in accordance with the racial policy of Nazi Germany. After Himmler introduced the "marriage order" on December 31, 1931, the RuSHA would only issue a permit to marry once detailed background investigations into the racial fitness of both prospective parents had been completed and proved both of them to be of Aryan descent back to 1800.[2][3]

Contents

1 Formation 2 Organization 3 Racial policies 4 Postwar 5 See also 6 Notes 7 References

Formation[edit] The RuSHA was founded in 1931 by Reichsführer-SS
Reichsführer-SS
Heinrich Himmler
Heinrich Himmler
and Richard Walther Darré, who later rose to the rank of SS-Obergruppenführer. It was an SS office. In 1935, it was upgraded to an SS Main Office. Under its first director, Darré, it propagated the Nazi ideology of "Blood and Soil". Darré was dismissed by Himmler in 1938 and was succeeded by SS- Gruppenführer
Gruppenführer
Günther Pancke, SS- Gruppenführer
Gruppenführer
Otto Hofmann
Otto Hofmann
in 1940, and SA- Gruppenführer
Gruppenführer
Richard Hildebrandt in 1943. The RuSHA was created to monitor Himmler's 1931 order that the marital decisions of unmarried SS men should be supervised by the Nazi state. SS men would thereafter have to apply for a marriage permit three months before getting married so that the parents of the fiancée could be investigated to ensure her racial purity. With time, the marriage laws became less strict,[4] but RuSHA's power progressively grew in scope and other organizations came under its umbrella, such as the Ahnenerbe. In December 1935 Himmler ordered the RuSHA to establish the Lebensborn network of maternity homes, whose purpose was "to accommodate and look after racially and genetically valuable expectant mothers." Organization[edit]

Babies born during the SS Lebensborn
Lebensborn
program in 1943.

In 1935 the RuSHA consisted of seven departments (German: Ämter or Amtsgruppen):

Amt Organisation und Verwaltungsamt (English: Organisation and Administration) Amt Rassenamt (English: Race) Amt Schulungsamt (English: Education) Amt Sippen und Heiratsamt (English: Family and Marriage) Amt Siedlungsamt (English: Settlement) Amt für Archiv und Zeitungswesen (English: Records and Press) Amt für Bevölkerungspolitik (English: Population Policy)

In 1940 it was reorganized to create four main departments:

Verwaltungsamt (English: Administration Office). Rassenamt (English: Racial Office), it selected future SS personnel and conducted racial selections. Heiratsamt (English: Marriage Office) it controlled the selection of suitable wives by SS men. Siedlungsamt (English: Settlement Office), it dealt with the settlement of discharged SS men, especially in the annexed eastern areas.

The Race and Settlement Departments were further divided into the Hauptabteilungen (English: Main Branches). One of these managed welfare and pensions in cooperation with the SS-Hauptfürsorge- und Versorgungsamt (English: SS Main Welfare and Pension Department) at the Reich Ministry of the Interior. Racial policies[edit] See also: Polish areas annexed by Nazi Germany By 1937 more than 300 SS men had been expelled from the Schutzstaffel for violating Nazi race laws (Rassenschande), although an order later stated that they could remain if they were already married and could satisfy racial criteria. In November 1940, Himmler reinstated all SS personnel expelled under the marriage laws, provided they met racial requirements of the Nazi Party. Following the invasion of the Soviet Union in 1941, the RuSHA worked in partnership with VOMI
VOMI
in the "germanization" of captured territory, monitoring of settler welfare, and the plantation of ethnic Germans in areas designated for settlement by the SS, particularly in occupied Ukraine. This involved in part, the resetting of Germans in the Nazi occupied Eastern territories and ejecting the native families from those lands. The RuSHA was also an advisory and executive office for all questions of racial selection. Racial examinations were performed by Rasse und Siedlungs (RUS) leaders or their racial examiners (German: Eignungsprüfer) in connection with:

Cases where sexual intercourse had occurred between Eastern European POWs or workers and Germans Children born to Eastern European workers Classification of people of German descent Selection of enemy nationals, particularly Poles, for slave labour and Germanization Kidnapping of children suitable for Germanization Population transfers The persecution and liquidation of Jews

The RuSHA also employed Josef Mengele
Josef Mengele
for a short time from November 1940 to early 1941, in Department II of its Family Office, where he was responsible for "care of genetic health" and "genetic health tests".[5] Postwar[edit]

Some of the 14 defendants in the RuSHA Trial
RuSHA Trial
at Nuremberg read the indictments against them in July 1947.

In July 1947, 14 officials from the organization were indicted in the RuSHA Trial
RuSHA Trial
and tried by the Allied powers at Nuremberg. All were charged with crimes against humanity, war crimes and membership of a criminal organization (the SS). All but one (who was acquitted on the two more serious charges) were found guilty and sentenced to between three and 25 years imprisonment. See also[edit]

Generalplan Ost
Generalplan Ost
– the Nazi plan to ethnically-cleanse occupied Eastern Europe.

Notes[edit]

^ [1] SS Collections: RuSHA (Rasse- und Siedlungshauptamt) – Stenger Historica ^ Michael Burleigh (7 November 1991). The Racial State: Germany 1933–1945. Cambridge University Press. p. 84, 273,. ISBN 978-0-521-39802-2.  ^ Christian Zentner, Friedemann Bedürftig (1997). The encyclopedia of the Third Reich. Da Capo Press. p. 146. ISBN 978-0-306-80793-0. CS1 maint: Uses authors parameter (link) ^ [2] SS Collections: RuSHA (Rasse- und Siedlungshauptamt) – Stenger Historica ^ Schmuhl, Hans-Walter (2008). The Kaiser-Wilhelm-Institute for Anthropology, Human Heredity and Eugenics, 1927–1945: Crossing Boundaries. Springer. p. 364. ISBN 1-4020-6599-X. 

References[edit]

[3] SS Collections: RuSHA (Rasse- und Siedlungshauptamt) - www.stengerhistorica.com Law Reports of Trials of War Criminals: United Nations War Crimes Commission. Wm. S. Hein Publishing. 1997. p. 5. ISBN 1-57588-403-8. 

v t e

Schutzstaffel
Schutzstaffel
(SS)

Branches

Allgemeine SS Totenkopfverbände (SS-TV) Waffen-SS

Leadership

Reichsführer-SS SS and police leader SS personnel SS commands

Leaders

Julius Schreck Joseph Berchtold Erhard Heiden Heinrich Himmler Karl Hanke

Main departments

Personal Staff Reichsführer-SS SS Main Office Head Operational Office Reich Main Security Office
Reich Main Security Office
(RSHA) Economics and Administration Office Office of Race and Settlement (RuSHA) Main Office for Ethnic Germans (VOMI) Office of the Reich Commissioner for Germanic Resettlement (RKFDV) Courts Office Personnel Office Education Office

Ideological institutions

Ahnenerbe Das Schwarze Korps SS-Junkerschule Bad Tölz Lebensborn

Police and security services

Regular uniform police (Orpo) Schutzpolizei (Schupo) Criminal police (Kripo) Secret State police (Gestapo) State Security police (SiPo) SS Security Service (SD)

Führer protection

SS-Begleitkommando des Führers Reichssicherheitsdienst

Paramilitary units

Einsatzgruppen Schutzmannschaft Belarusian Auxiliary Police Latvian Police Battalions Ypatingasis būrys Lithuanian Security Police Lithuanian Auxiliary Police Battalions Rollkommando Hamann Arajs Kommando Ukrainian Auxiliary Police Volksdeutscher Selbstschutz Trawnikis Estonian Auxiliary Police Police Regiment Centre

Waffen-SS
Waffen-SS
divisions

Verfügungstruppe (SS-VT) Leibstandarte (LSSAH) SS Division Das Reich SS Division Totenkopf SS Polizei Division SS Division Wiking

Foreign SS units

Germanic-SS Germaansche SS in Nederland Germaansche SS in Vlaanderen Germanske SS Norge Schalburg Corps Britisches Freikorps S.S. Sturmbrigade R.O.N.A. Finnish Volunteer Battalion of the Waffen-SS

SS-controlled enterprises

Ostindustrie Deutsche Wirtschaftsbetriebe Deutsche Ausrüstungswerke DEST Allach porcelain Apollinaris Mattoni Sudetenquell Anton Loibl

SS awards

SS Sword of Honour SS Honour Ring SS Honor Dagger

Ranks, uniforms and insignia

Uniforms and insignia of the SS Ranks and insignia of the Waffen-SS Ranks and insignia of the Orpo Corps colour

.