Bettauer, Hugo

BORN 18 Aug 1872, Baden, Niederösterreich (near Wien) - DIED 26 Mar 1925, Wien
BIRTH NAME Bettauer, Maximilian Hugo
CAUSE OF DEATH murdered by gunshots
GRAVE LOCATION Wien: Feuerhalle Simmering, 11., Simmeringer Hauptstraße 337 (Abteilung ALI, Nummer 47)

Hugo Bettauer was the son of the stock broker Arnold Bettauer. He attended the Franz-Josephs-Gymnasium in Vienna at the same time as Karl Kraus and Kraus would criticize him during his later life.

When he was sixteen years old he ran away from home and travelled to Alexandria. From there he was sent back. In 1890 he left the Jewish faith and he joined the Evangelical church. In 1896 he inherited his father's substantial fortune. He married Olga Steiner and after his mother died he moved with Olga to the USA. But due to a speculation he lost his fortune during the trip to New York. In New York his wife worked as an actress. In 1899 they returned to Germany. In Berlin he worked as a journalist and he and Olga had a son, Heinrich. In 1901 the director of the Hoftheater in Berlin committed suicide after Bettauer had accused him of corruption. He was exiled from Berlin.

Bettauer went to Munich, where he joined the cabaret "die Elf Scharfrichter". He divorced Olga and in 1904 he ran off to the USA with the young Helene Müller. They married during the crossing and from 1904 to 1910 they lived in New York. In 1910 he returned to Vienna, where he wored for the Neue Freie Presse until 1918. He wrote several novels, among them "die Stadt ohne Juden" (1922) and "Die freudlose Gasse" (1924). He oppposed antisemitism and he had a lot of enemies.

On 10 March 1925 he was shot in his office at the Lange Gasse 5-7 by the dental technician and nazi party follower Otto Rothschock (1904-1990). He died two weeks later. Rothschock was sentenced to psychiatrical treatment and was released after eighteen months. He was buried at the Evangelischer Friedhof Simmering. In 1957 his ashes were transferred to the Feuerhalle Simmering.

Related persons
• was criticized by Kraus, Karl


The grave of Hugo Bettauer at the Feuerhalle Simmering, Vienna.
Picture by Androom (15 Aug 2019)


Hugo Bettauer – Wikipedia
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Published: 27 Jun 2020
Last update: 27 Jun 2020