Sylvester Stadler SS-Personnel Examination List of 1934
This record is one of the earliest of Stadler's that I have been able to find, it is dated 12th January 1934, eighteen days before his 24th birthday. There is a picture of Stadler attached to this file, but it is of such poor quality as not to be worth reproducing here. The Examination List itself is basically a medical record and it is interesting to compare it with the similar one for Adolf Diekmann dated 2nd January 1940. As can be seen below, right at the start of the Nazi regime they were obsessed with the concept of Race.
Comments on the entries below are in italics.
Forename: Sylvester (Some of his records spell it as: Sylfester, but this particular form was completed by Stadler himself and must therefore be assumed to be correct. It is irrelevant to the story of Oradour, but in the German language "Sylvester" also means New Year's Eve and it is surely no coincidence that as he was born on 30th December, his parents seemingly followed the Austrian custom of "Bauern-Silvester", or "Farmers New Year Eve", which falls on 30th December?
Birthday: 30th December 1910
Birthplace: Fohnsdorf (Austria, about 50 km west of Graz).
Party Membership number: (No entry, but elsewhere in his records his number is quoted as being: 4,159,018, which is quite a high number, given that he joined the SS in 1933. For comparison, Adolf Diekmann who joined the SS and the NSDAP on 1 April 1933 had a party membership number of 1,752,411. The obvious explanation being that whilst Stadler was a "fanatical" Nazi, his original Austrian Nazi Party number was replaced by a unified German / Austrian one after the Anschluß.
Record of Parentage
Father alive? Yes ... Age? 69
Mother alive? Yes ... Age? 62
Siblings? 4 brothers and 2 sisters
Previous Record (general data)
Childhood illnesses: Measles (Measles was quite a common (and serious) childhood illness at this time and as a matter of record, Adolf Hitler's younger brother Edmund died of it aged 6 in 1900).
Later illnesses: Influenza
Venereal diseases: (There was no written answer, just a strike-out line)
Present troubles: None
Accidents: Electrical burns from 2000 volts on 31 April 1933 (This date is of course obviously wrong as April has only 30 days, but that is what Stadler has himself written. He actually joined the SS on 2nd March 1933 as an Anwärter, or Candidate, so this accident apparently occurred whilst he was a soldier and not in his previous civilian life).
Military or Accident Pension: (There was no written answer, just a strike-out line)
Nicotine: 10 cigarettes per day.
Alcohol: None (He must have been a teetotaller).
Other addictions: (There was no written answer, just a strike-out line).
Sporting activities: (He has listed four activities, but unfortunately the writing is unclear).
The signer declares hereby to have made the above statements to his best knowledge and conscience and simultaneously releases the examining doctor of his medical confidentiality with respect to his senior departments.
Signed ... At Dachau, on 12th January 1934, by: Sylvester Stadler. (Note that this was signed at Dachau, so any claims made either by ex-SS men, or their apologists, that they were simple soldiers and ignorant of the horrors of the Concentration Camp system, seem questionable. It is true that the Concentration Camp and the SS-training facility were separate establishments at Dachau, but it is unrealistic to suggest that one did not know about the other).
Now follows a two page medical assessment by the examining SS-doctor.
(When nothing is diseased, enter: "without clinical findings". (In the original document this was abbreviated to o.B. which stands for, "ohne krankenhaft Befund").
A. General Results
1) Naked dimensions: 184 cm tall (6 ft ½ in), 79 kg weight (174 lb), Chest size 93 cm relaxed, to 99 cm expanded (37 in to 39 in).
2) Disposition: no entry Seat height: no entry.
3) Deportment and Gait: Upright.
4) Condition: Good Musculature: Powerful.
5) Bone structure: unfortunately the answer is indecipherable.
6) Bones and joint changes: without clinical findings.
7) Knock-knees or Bow-legs: without clinical findings.
8) Fallen arches and other foot changes: Slight.
9) Varicose veins: without clinical findings.
10 Innate deformities: without clinical findings.
11) Skin rashes and scares: without clinical findings.
12) Glandular swellings: without clinical findings.
B. Particular findings
1) Eyes: Normal. Vision defects 0 out of 6 for both left and right eye.
2) Spectacle wearer: No.
3) Squint: without clinical findings.
4) Ears: without clinical findings. Able to hear a whisper in both right and left ears from 6 metres (a very subjective test!).
5) Nose: without clinical findings.
6) Dental Records:
From his records Stadler did not have very good teeth. At this time (12th January 1934, when he was just 23) only 17 out of his 32 teeth were in original condition, the rest being either missing, filled, capped, or in need of treatment. It has often been said that for entry into the Libstandarte-SS (Hitler's bodyguard), that even a single filled tooth could bar membership. I wonder about this frequently quoted 'fact', as all the dental records that I have seen from this era all show some evidence of decay.
7) Oral cavity: without clinical findings. Jaws: without clinical findings. Tonsils: without clinical findings.
8) Goitre: without clinical findings.
9) Larynx: without clinical findings.
10) Lungs: without any clinical findings.
11) Heart: a) Limits: Normal. b) Sounds (meaning any irregularity): Pure
c) Pulse rate: at rest (unfortunately the entry has been amended and is now illegible). After 10 knee bends: 104
12) Liver: without clinical findings.
13 Spleen: without clinical findings.
14) Stomach and intestine: without clinical findings.
15) Fractures: without clinical findings.
16) Genitals: without clinical findings.
17) Urine: without clinical findings.
18) Haemorrhoids: without clinical findings.
19) Blood test: without clinical findings.
20) Intelligence (estimated): Normal (It seems that no written I.Q. test was used to give a measure).
21) Reflexes: Normal.
22) Psychic peculiarities: None.
C. Racial Characteristics (these questions were answered by underlining the appropriate choice from a given list of alternatives).
1) Stature: Tall, Slim, Strong.
2) Skin colour ... Pink (the other choices were, White, Light, Sallow, Light Grey, Light Brown and Brownish, so anyone of mixed-race was not going to be considered for entry into the SS at this time. It is noteworthy that by 1940, the range of skin colours had reduced to just three: rusty-white, ivory-white and olive-brown).
3) Skull: Long (The preferred 'Nordic' shape for a true Aryan).
4) Forehead: High.
5) Rear of head: Moderately curved.
6) Face: Narrow (another true Aryan feature).
7) Nose: Medium-wide.
8) Chin: Round.
9) Hair: Blond.
10) Eyes: Blue-grey.
11) Lips: Narrow.
12) Personality: Quiet, Active.
13) Temperament: Phlegmatic, Bodily: Asthenic (Having a slender light body: Ectomorphic).
14) Classification: With traces of, Schizophrenic behaviour and Manic-depressive behaviour. (these two behaviours are to show that he exhibited signs of such illnesses without actually having those diseases. He was judged as not showing any signs of Epileptic behaviour. These observations are interesting and I have not yet come across any other reports of other SS personnel that showed such findings).
© Michael Williams: minor revision December 2004