Posted by: Jan Meisels Allen
On May 5th at the US National Archives in Washington DC leading national archives and museums, signed a global agreement to provide an international online catalogue of documentation on looted cultural artifacts. The project will enable families to research their losses, provenance, researchers to locate important documentation, and historians to study newly accessible materials on the history of objects taken by the Nazis between 1933 and 1945. The catalogue was created through collaboration between national archives and expert organizations in Belgium, France, Germany, Ukraine, the UK and USA.
The purpose of the project is to extend public access to all records related to looted cultural artifacts by cataloguing and digitizing the archival materials and making them available through a single international web portal hosted by the US National Archives and Records Administration. To view the web portal go to: http://tinyurl.com/3hytzz4
A list of the international participating institutions is on the website.
The records date from 1939 to 1961 and range from seizure orders, inventories and images of looted works of art, field reports and claim forms for seized property to interrogation reports of art dealers and reports of the transfer of looted art works to neutral countries. The portal page is:
and serves as the project's navigational hub. Each link directs users to the search interface for the finding aids and records available from each participating institution.
The Portal members plan to launch a wiki to serve as a place to share information about and research into archival resources related to Nazi-era cultural property throughout the world.
Press release from the National Archives (USA) may be found at:
Thank you to Saul Issroff for alerting me to this agreement.
Jan Meisels Allen
Chairperson, IAJGS Public Records Access Monitoring Committee