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 Joseph Hofer

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Joseph Hofer

  • Birth 15 Oct 1894 Rockport Colony, Hanson County, South Dakota, USA
  • Death 29 Nov 1918 Leavenworth, Leavenworth County, Kansas, USA
  • Burial Hillside, Douglas County, South Dakota, USA
  • Memorial ID 58431508

Hutterite man from the Rockport Colony who was tortured at Fort Leavenworth Military Prison for being a pacifist (due to religious beliefs) during WWI. He was admitted to a hospital critically ill. A nurse managed to get a message to his wife, Maria, but she arrived too late. She did, after persuading the commanding officer, see his body in his coffin. He had been dressed in a military uniform. She felt this was a mockery. His brother, Michael, also tortured at Fort Leavenworth, died 3 days later. They both left behind wives and children.

Two other men from their colony who were drafted with them and also tortured at Fort Leavenworth survived. They were ultimately released with the government's apologies.

The Hutterite faith allows doing any job in the military (even dangerous jobs) except for fighting. If they do fight, they can be ex-communicated. So, this was quite a serious issue to these men. The Hutterite consider them martyrs for standing up for their beliefs unto death.


  • Created by: A Marine Daughter
  • Added: 9 Sep 2010
  • Find A Grave Memorial 58431508
  • Bucky Hydal
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Joseph Hofer (15 Oct 1894–29 Nov 1918), Find A Grave Memorial no. 58431508, citing Immanuel Lutheran Church Cemetery, Hillside, Douglas County, South Dakota, USA ; Maintained by A Marine Daughter (contributor 46506165) .