Library and Archives
Library and Archives


Major library and archival coverage on Germany begins with the founding of the First Reich and the Reichstag debates of 1871. German participation in European politics and World War I is represented by extensive holdings of trench papers, personal narratives, government documents, reviews of the foreign press, manuscript materials, prisoner-of-war letters, sketchbooks, and posters.

The November 1918 revolution and its aftermath, including the founding of the Kommunistische Partei Deutschlands and its journal Die Rote Fahne, are covered in documentary studies, journals, and revolutionary tracts. A large collection of secondary literature, official government documents, newspapers, and periodicals serve to document the history of the Weimar Republic.

The National Socialist period (1933–45) is represented by the writings of Adolf Hitler, Joseph Goebbels, and Alfred Rosenberg and by a nearly complete edition of the Völkischer Beobachter and other periodicals. Parts of the original diaries of Goebbels and of Heinrich Himmler are held in the archives. A major historical source for this period are the 150 microfilm reels of the records of the NSDAP (Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei) Hauptarchiv, filmed by the Hoover Institution with approval of the Department of State at the Berlin Document Center in 1969/70. The collection also holds extensive literature on concentration camps and the Holocaust and a substantial set of records of the International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg.

The library holdings documenting World War II from the German perspective include the official multivolume history Kriegstagebuch des Oberkommandos der Wehrmacht, 1940–45; regimental histories and personal memoirs; and a nearly complete file of Zeitschriftendienst (1939–44), issued by the Propaganda Ministry. A longheld but only recently accessible collection of Nazi-era school textbooks is also located at Hoover.

For the postwar period in Germany, special attention has been paid to the documents of the Allied occupation, the separate governments established in the two Germanys, the emergence and continuance of political parties of all shades of opinion, the new left, student uprisings and university reform, and self-images and self-questioning in both German states. Of great practical use is the index on microfiche and Herbert Weiss's instructions concerning the microfilms of the Office Military Government, U.S. Zone, filmed in Washington by the Bundesarchiv and the Munich Institut für Zeitgeschichte. Pre- and postwar German affairs are covered by a series of microfilms of State Department Central Files.

For the immediate postwar period the Briegleb and the William Sander collections in the archives contain reports on political, economic, and social conditions for the years 1945–1949, while the library holds the publications of the various zonal governments.

Materials on the founding of the Federal Republic and the Democratic Republic in 1949 include documentation on events in both parts of Germany and their relations to each other and to the rest of the world; vast collections of leaflets and periodicals of various parties; materials on Berlin; books, pamphlets, and photos of the 1948–49 airlift and the raising of the wall in 1963; and important archival holdings of reports by onetime political prisoners in East German jails (1950–75).

The fall of the Berlin Wall is documented by a collection of monographs, pamphlets, periodicals, newspapers, and ephemera distributed at protest rallies and on the street.