Correspondence regarding Dokumentenwerk - with Institut für Zeitgeschichte - Krausnick, Helmut

  • This material is held at
  • Reference
      GB 1556 3000/9/1/21
  • Dates of Creation
      12/08/1954 - 04/07/1963
  • Language of Material
  • Physical Description
      96 letters

Scope and Content

The correspondence illustrates nearly a decade of cooperation of Helmut Krausnick and Alfred Wiener as responsible editors of the planned Dokumentenwerk. The project’s early stage was shaped by determining several conceptual, legal, financial, and personnel questions (1954/1955). While the IfZ was tasked with compiling material on the persecution of Jews the Library was held accountable for a part on opposition, resistance and help for Jews.

From 1957 the correspondence reflects gradually growing problems of the project’s implementation finally leading to its termination. The amount of available material, other commitments of the editors, and internal differences with researchers Eleonore Sterling, Hans Mommsen (both IfZ), and Francis Carsten (The Wiener Library) are mentioned. Furthermore, the bundle contains a draft of a project contract (1955), a progress report (1955), and a memo about a visit of H. Krausnick in London (1956).

Administrative / Biographical History

Beginning in 1954 The Wiener Library and the Institute for Contemporary History (IfZ) in Munich worked jointly on an edition of documents (Dokumentenwerk) regarding the persecution of Jews in the Nazi era. Initiated by the Ministry of Interior (BMI) and funded by the Federal Agency for Homeland Service (BHD) this project was part of larger journalistic endeavors by these two authorities to fight and prevent Antisemitism in West Germany. Due to ongoing problems the Dokumentenwerk was cancelled eventually in May 1963.

German historian Dr. Helmut Krausnick (1905-1990) was a highly regarded expert on National Socialism. He worked as researcher at the IfZ, and was appointed its director in 1959. Together with Alfred Wiener Krausnick served as editor of the planned Dokumentenwerk.

Access Information


Related Material

See the numerous correspondences on the Dokumentenwerk project within the Pre-1963 Correspondence series.