Jewish Cultural Reconstruction Inc: records (microfilm)

Scope and Content

Jewish Cultural Reconstruction Inc (JCR) records, 1943-1950, comprising: minutes of the JCR special meeting, 11 Jan 1949 (frames 7-10); summary of 3 reports, Apr, May and Jun 1949, (frames 11-14); report by M. Bernstein, library investigator, Sep-Oct 1949; two reports on ceremonial objects, 10 Jul 1949 (frames 20-24); ceremonial objects in German museum, preliminary findings by M Narkiss, (frames 25-28); minutes of an Advisory Committee meeting, 19 Sep 1949, (frames 30-33); minutes of the annual meeting of the corporation, 17 Oct 1949, (frames 47-50); minutes of a Special Meeting of the Board of Directors, 12 Apr 1950, (frames 55-58); memo on microfilming in German, 12 Apr 1950; confidential report on mission to Germany by Hannah Arendt, 12 Apr 1950, (frames 63-69); minutes of a special meeting of the Board of Directors, (frames 71-73); Confidential Field Reports: No. 8, author Bernard Heller, 25 Jul 1949, (frames 79-83); No. 9, author Bernard Heller, Sep 1949, (frames 84-87); No. 10, author E G Lowenthal, Oct 1949, (frames 89-92); No. 11, author E.G. Lowenthal, Nov 1949, (frames 94-97); No. 12, author Hannah Arendt, Dec 1949, frames (98-101); No. 14, author E G Lowenthal, Jan 1950, (frames 102-104); No. 15, author Hannah Arendt, Feb 1950, (frames, 105-110); No. 16, author Hannah Arendt, Feb 1950, (frames 111-113); No. 17, author E G Lowenthal, Feb 1950, (frames 114-117); No. 18, author Hannah Arendt, Mar 1950, (frames 118-122); No. 19, author E.G. Lowenthal, Mar-Apr 1950, (frames 123-124).

Administrative / Biographical History

Jewish Cultural Reconstruction Inc. was founded in New York by the Commission on European Jewish Cultural Reconstruction in 1947. The Commission was created in 1944 by the Conference on Jewish Relations, later known as the Conference on Jewish Social Studies. The historian Salo W Baron (1895-1989) was key player in all these organisations. He was also a close friend of the political theorist, Hannah Arendt (1906-1975), whom he made executive director of the organisation - she is the author of some of the reports in this collection.

The organisation, which operated first from its base in Offenbach, later Wiesbaden, was entrusted with receiving, processing and distributing the considerable quantity of Jewish property, plundered by the Nazis. The property was classified according to origin and to type and wherever possible was restored to its original owners. Several hundred thousand books were distributed: 85% was shipped to Israel and to the USA to be allocated to institutions of Jewish learning. 8% was given to West European countries (half to Great Britain) and the remaining 7% was distributed to countries around the world. Other objects distributed included 1000 Torah scrolls to the Israel Ministry for Religious Affairs, 4000 ritual objects to Bezalel Museum in Jerusalem and archival material, chiefly from the Jewish communities in Germany, to the Israel Historical Society.


Broadly chronologically

Access Information


Acquisition Information

Jewish Central Information Office

Other Finding Aids

Description exists to this archive on the Wiener Library's online catalogue

Physical Characteristics and/or Technical Requirements


Archivist's Note

Sources: Encyclopedia Judaica Vol 10, (Keter Publishing, 1971). Entry compiled by Howard Falksohn.

Conditions Governing Use

Copies can be made for personal use. Permission must be sought for publication.

Location of Originals

Wiener Collection, Tel Aviv University, Israel.