A judicial executioner
Reichhart was an eighth generation professional executioner. Diminishing executions in the early part of his career led him to a number of other business ventures and to his considering giving the career up, but the career boomed with the consolidation of Nazi power in 1933 and later. He worked on simultaneously speeding up the execution process during Nazi rule and making it less stressful for those executed. From 1924, during the Weimar Republic and the period of National Socialism, he executed 2,951 people (250 of them women) via guillotine, and 59 by hanging. Following the end of World War II Reichhart was employed by the US Office of Military Government to hang Nazi war criminals. He retired after 1946.