Franz Roth: Austrian photographer (1911 - 1943) | Biography, Facts, Information, Career, Wiki, Life
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Franz Roth
Austrian photographer

Franz Roth

Franz Roth
The basics

Quick Facts

Intro Austrian photographer
Was Photographer
From Austria
Field Arts
Gender male
Birth 5 April 1911, Vienna, Austria
Death 17 March 1943, Kiev, Ukraine (aged 31 years)
Star sign Aries
The details


Franz Roth was an Austrian press photographer of the Waffen-SS who worked with the American news agency Associated Press.

Early life and education

Roth was born in Vienna as the oldest son of the pediatrician Franz Alois Roth (1881-1952) and his wife Alma Roth (born Wagner, 1888-1978.) He had three siblings.

From 1918 to 1929 he attended high schools in Salzburg and Linz in Austria. From 1929, he studied four semesters of legal science in Vienna and joined the Academic Burschenschaft Oberösterreicher Germanen.


After the failed attempt to pass the first juridical state exam, he discontinued studies in 1932 and became a freelance photo editor for the Associated Press in Vienna in 1934. In the following years he reported on behalf of AP, among others, the Abyssinian war, the 1936 Summer Olympics in Berlin, and the Spanish Civil War.

In 1938 he was admitted to the NSDAP and joined the Reichsfilmkammer. In June 1939 Roth married the actress Thea Bohnsack (1907-1985). In 1940 he joined the Kriegsberichterstatter-Zug of the Leibstandarte SS Adolf Hitler under SS Sturmbannführer Kurt Meyer.

Until his death in 1943, Roth participated in the Balkan campaign, the attack on the Soviet Union and the Battle of Kharkov. After a wound in Greece, he was awarded the Iron Cross 2nd Class in 1941. In September 1942, he was placed under the rank of Untersturmführer in the Waffen-SS.


During the battle of Kharkov, he was wounded on February 21, 1943, and eventually died on March 17, 1943, in Kiev. He was buried at "Heldenfriedhof Askold's Grave". On 25 March 1943, he was awarded the First Class of the Iron Cross.


In March 2016, Guardian reported that Associated Press entered a formal cooperation with the Hitler regime in the 1930s, supplying American newspapers with content that was produced and approved by the Nazi propaganda ministry. The probe revealed that Hitler personally selected the Franz Roth's photographs of the dead bodies inside Lviv prisons.

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