Projects

New Gift to Support Pilot Projects in Transcription and Photograph Digitization

This handwritten diary from the 18TH century is typical of documents that could be transcribed under a new program. Photo, Jon Pack.

LBI will launch pilot projects aimed at improving access to and discovery of two classes of materials in LBI archives that are rich in information but too often hidden from researchers: handwritten manuscripts and photographs.

Family Matters: In Chicago, Generations Gather for Intimate Look at Family Histories Preserved in LBI Archives

Marianne Dreyfus, the granddaughter of Leo Baeck, discusses her family’s history during an LBI event October, 2014 in Chicago

LBI convened genealogists, friends, and family of two Chicagoans with German-Jewish roots for a discussion that connected individual and family narratives to the historical context of Jewish life in Germany before 1933, during the Holocaust, and today.

Germany’s Top Justice Official Tackles His Ministry’s Past at LBI

Rebecca Wittmann (University of Toronto) and Christoph Safferling (University
of Marburg) discuss the role of former Nazis in Germany’s post-war Justice
Ministry at the Center for Jewish History on November 14, 2014.

In the Center for Jewish History’s packed Forchheimer Auditorium, German Federal Justice Minister Heiko Maas addressed the crowd and spoke about the high numbers of Nazi Party members and sympathizers that were employed in the post-1949 Ministry of Justice in Germany, which was tasked with interpreting and enforcing the law.

From Gleiwitz to Shanghai, Digitized Periodicals offer Snapshots of Jewish Life

A selection of periodicals digitized by Leo Baeck Institute

The LBI Library is pleased to announce that about 60 new periodicals are already available online through DigiBaeck and Internet Archive, with about 40 further periodicals in process. Among the rare items now available are 20th -century newsletters from various Jewish communities in Germany, Austria, and other German-speaking areas. Other highlights include publications from German-Jewish…

LBI Partners with Genealogists to Focus on “Family Matters”

The first issue of Jüdische Familienforschung, LBI Library, B184.

In the first of a series of measures aimed at improving access to its collections for family historians, LBI recently partnered with a group of German-Jewish genealogists to digitize Jüdische Familienforschung (Jewish Family Research), a genealogical journal published in Germany between 1924 and 1938. Funding was provided by the “German-Jewish Special Interest Group” (GerSIG), which…

Exile in the Spotlight—LBI to Sponsor Conference on Émigré Theater Giant Kurt Hirschfeld

A portrait of Kurt Hirschfeld (1902–1962) taken in Darmstadt, c. 1930. Else Blum Collection, AR 10303

When the National Socialist regime engineered the “alignment” of cultural institutions from Berlin to Vienna with its own rigid ideological principles, the Schauspielhaus in Zurich became a refuge for free German theater. Even during the war years, audiences in Zurich could see radical new works by banned German playwrights, contemporary international works in translation, and…

LBI at Limmud Germany

At Limmud Germany, workshops were presented in German, Russian, and English, a mix that reflects the diverse backgrounds of the participants. Photo: Nathan Frank.

Limmud Germany held its seventh annual festival at a resort outside Berlin from May 29–June 1, 2014. About 400 participants attended workshops that spanned topics from Hebrew language, Jewish cuisine and a workshop by Dr. Frank Mecklenburg of LBI which covered the topic of German-Jewish history before 1933.

Wikipedians Write the Book on LBI Collections

“If you don’t think Wikipedia is good enough, create an account and make it better!” —Leonora Lange, CJH Archivist

At the first public CJH Wikipedia Edit-a-thon on Saturday, May 4, 2014, about 30 volunteers, including CJH and LBI staff, members of the local NYC Wikimedia Chapter, and scholars and librarians from other institutions spent an afternoon creating and improving Wikipedia articles related to women in Jewish History.

Edythe Griffinger Art Catalogue Will Improve Access to LBI Art Collection

Works by Eduard Magnes, Max Liebermann , and others in LBI's storage facility at the Center for Jewish History in Manhattan. Photo: Jon Pack.

Thanks to a gift from a trust under the will of Edythe Griffinger, LBI has begun work on a project that will highlight its art collection. This grant will allow LBI to make the collection more accessible through the creation of a virtual art catalogue and a web portal that will allow the public to view artworks and artifacts that are rarely if ever on public display.

Student-playwrights Meet Theresienstadt survivor at LBI

Theater teacher Sarah Cusick of Columbia Grammar and Preparatory school (l) asks a question of Miriam Merzbacher.

On April 4, 2014, the students from Columbia Grammar and Preparatory School quietly filed into the Center for Jewish History’s Lillian Goldman Reading Room to hear from Miriam Merzbacher. Miriam is a Berlin native who was interned in Theresienstadt, Hitler’s “model ghetto,” from September 1944 until the end of the war.