Spany, Ludmilla

Ludmilla Spany


2 August 1911 Vienna – 14 September 1991 Vienna

née Ludmilla Wotawa; also known as Lilly


Ludmilla Wotawa grew up in her parents' villa at Schreiberweg 65 in Vienna's 19th district, where she first met Ferdinand Spany when she was fourteen. As the business partner of her father, a retired bank employee, and friend of the family, Spany frequently visited the home. Because of an unpaid loan, it was Wotawa's father who filed charges against Spany on suspicion of fraud and caused him to be arrested in 1927. Ludmilla Wotawa, who was working for the Rudolf Bohrer dental wholesale agency, lent several thousand schillings in the 1930s to Spany, whose financial situation had deteriorated because of the four-year case and his conviction in 1931. After 1938, Spany's financial situation improved suddenly, and Wotawa was paid back, in part in the form of jewellery. In 1938 she moved to an apartment at Landstraßer Hauptstraße 58 in the 3rd district, which she described as an "unoccupied Jewish apartment", taking over the interior furnishings (furniture, kitchenware, books, etc.) from Olga Westreich, who was to be deported to Theresienstadt in 1942. From 1939/40 Wotawa rented two rooms to Spany. From 1938, presumably through Spany's connections, she worked for the Abwicklungsstelle für die Liquidierung und Arisierung des Uhren- und Juwelenfaches (Office for Liquidation and Aryanization of the Clock and Jewellery Sector), amongst other things liquidating the estate of Jakob Futterweit. After Spany's arrest in 1939, Wotawa corresponded intensively with the authorities and ultimately travelled to Berlin to have him released. She and Spany were arrested in autumn 1945 and investigated by the Vienna Volksgericht under § 6 (illegal enrichment) of the Kriegsverbrechergesetz (War Criminals Act). Wotawa was accused of destroying or attempting to destroy incriminating evidence against Spany. During a search of her apartment in autumn 1945, numerous pieces of jewellery and art objects were seized. Wotawa claimed that some of the object belonged to her and that she had been given them by Spany. During questioning on 21 September 1945 she stated that he had purchased "a considerable number of paintings" from Vugesta and resold them through the Dorotheum but later denied this, saying that the officer had recorded it incorrectly. In 1950 the case was closed. Wotawa married Spany in 1962, five years after the death of his first wife Josefine. From 1964 Ludmilla and Ferdinand Spany made donations to the city of Vienna and the Österreichische Galerie. In 1987 and 1990 she sold several sets of prints to the Akademie der bildenden Künste in Wien (Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna). After her death in 1991, she was buried in her husband's honorary grave in the Central Cemetery. Gifts and purchases whose provenance is connected with Ferdinand Spany and Ludmilla Spany are currently being investigated in various institutions.

Author Info

Justizzentrum Wien Mitte, BG Innere Stadt Wien, Verlassenschaftssache 9A 414/91, Ludmilla Spany.
Justizzentrum Wien Mitte, BG Innere Stadt Wien, Verlassenschaftssache 9A 764/83, Ferdinand Spany.

OeStA/AdR, ZNsZ, Gauakt 207.500, Ferdinand Spany.

WStLA, Historische Wiener Meldeunterlagen, Meldeauskunft Ferdinand Spany.
WStLA, Historische Wiener Meldeunterlagen, Meldeauskunft Ludmilla Spany (geb. Wotawa).
WStLA, Historische Wiener Meldeunterlagen, Meldeauskunft Olga Westreich.
WStLA, Nachlass Ferdinand Spany.
WStLA, Volksgericht, A1, Vg 2251-45, Ferdinand Spany, Veitschberger, Wotawa.
WStLA, Volksgericht, A1, Vg 11 Vr 6357/46, Rudolf Maier.