International Research: Nazi-Era Cultural Property

Bundesarchiv (The Federal Archives of Germany)

The records of the German Bundesarchiv (Federal Archives) concerning seizure, disposal and restitution of Nazi-Era looted cultural property are in Record Groups NS 8 (Kanzlei Rosenberg), NS 30 (Einsatzstab Reichsleiter Rosenberg), and B 323 (Treuhandverwaltung für Kulturgut bei der Oberfinanzdirektion München). The online finding aids for these relevant holdings are linked to this Portal. Many of the records are also available in digital format online. Links within the online finding aids are provided where appropriate. For the use of records that are not available digitally online, visitors should contact the Bundesarchiv prior to planning their visit.

Kanzlei Rosenberg

Kanzlei Rosenberg (NS 8)
(Rosenberg Chancellery)

The U.S. Army collected files of Alfred Rosenberg from various sources for use at the Nuremberg trials. These records were subsequently taken to Alexandria, Virginia, USA, and were partly microfilmed. These files, which were known as the U.S. Army Departmental Records Branch Record Group 1008, Reich Ministry for the Occupied Eastern Territories, arrived at the Bundesarchiv in March 1963 in the course of the repatriation of records from the USA. In the fall of 1963 the records were split into several groups according to their provenance.

Those files that were part of this repatriation and originated from the Rosenberg Chancellery represent the main body of Record Group NS 8 (Kanzlei Rosenberg). Some files that had made their way to the State Archives of Nuremberg and were handed over to the Bundesarchiv in 1955 were also added to this Record Group, as were several volumes from various other American records repatriations. Further additions included one volume from the Central Archives of the German Democratic Republic (GDR, Zentrales Staatsarchiv der DDR - 62 Ka 2/1) and one volume from the so-called NS-archives of the Ministry of State Security of the GDR (NS-Archiv des Ministeriums für Staatssicherheit der DDR - ZA VI 6322).

Einsatzstab Reichsleiter Rosenberg (NS 30)

Einsatzstab Reichsleiter Rosenberg (NS 30)
(Rosenberg Operations Staff)

Record Group NS 30 (Einsatzstab Reichsleiter Rosenberg) comprises a collection of dispersed files and single documents received from various sources. Most of these records derive from the provisional office of the ERR in Ratibor, Silesia. Part of the ERR headquarters (Stabsführung) and staff of the Ostbücherei (a special ERR library responsible for research on Bolshevism) were evacuated from Berlin to Ratibor, beginning in 1943, together with large holdings of books. The ERR in Ratibor later received additional documents that the members of the Hauptarbeitsgruppen (HAG) Ostland, Ukraine and Weißruthenien (Main Working Groups in the Eastern Territories, Ukraine, and White Ruthenia) had been able to rescue. The records stored at Ratibor were later evacuated to western Germany.

Treuhandverwaltung Fuer Kulturgut bei der OFD Muenchen

Treuhandverwaltung von Kulturgut bei der Oberfinanzdirektion München (B 323)
(Trusteeship of Cultural Assets, Munich)

Record group B 323 (Treuhandverwaltung für Kulturgut bei der Oberfinanzdirektion München) contains files and documents from various sources that contributed to the clarification of the ownership status of looted cultural property and its restitution after 1945. This Record Group can be described as a collection of materials, most of which are copies of NS-governmental records, contact prints of files taken to the USA or index cards. Other files document the Trusteeships' efforts at restitution.

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