1 Reply Latest reply on Jan 5, 2021 9:47 AM by Rachael Salyer

    Seeking access to documents from the Berlin Document Center

    Harry Salisbury Newbie

      How do you access documents from the Berlin Document Center?  Do you have to go in person to Maryland?'

        • Re: Seeking access to documents from the Berlin Document Center
          Rachael Salyer Pioneer

          Dear Mr. Salisbury,


          Thank you for posting your request on History Hub!


          In 1994 the National Archives accessioned microfilm copies of the biographic collections held by the former Berlin Document Center (BDC). These collections, totaling approximately 39,000 microfilm rolls, include: personnel records for SS (including Waffen-SS) officers and, to a lesser extent, SS enlisted personnel; membership registries and associated correspondence of the Nazi Party; documentation on membership in Nazi-affiliated or -sponsored organizations; and records relating to the naturalization of ethnic Germans during World War II. These collections and their accompanying finding aids are available for use in the Microfilm Reading Room (Room 4050). Please review a complete list of the Microfilm Publications in the BDC records on NARA’s website. These records have not been digitized. For access to and information about the rolls, please contact the National Archives at College Park - Textual Reference (RDT2) at archives2reference@nara.gov.


          Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and pursuant to guidance received from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), NARA has adjusted its normal operations to balance the need of completing its mission-critical work while also adhering to the recommended social distancing for the safety of NARA staff. As a result of this re-prioritization of activities, you may experience a delay in receiving an initial acknowledgement as well as a substantive response to your reference request from RDT2. Also, as a public health precaution due to COVID-19, all National Archives research rooms nationwide, including those at Presidential Libraries, are closed to the public until further notice.  We apologize for this inconvenience and appreciate your understanding and patience.


          For a comprehensive look at the records, we suggest that you review the finding aids for the BDC records, including “The Holdings of the Berlin Document Center: A Guide to the Collections” and “The Holdings of the Berlin Document Center: A Guide to the Microfilm” (both by the Berlin Document Center, 1994) that may be available in a library near you.


          Since the original documents were returned to the Federal Republic of Germany, you may wish to contact these institutions for additional assistance. For original personnel and related records concerning the Nazi party and affiliated organizations, please contact the Bundesarchiv, Postfach 450 569, 12175 Berlin, Germany. For German military information, please contact the Bundesarchiv Abt. VI - Militärarchiv, Wiesentalstraße 10, 79115 Freiburg, Germany. And for World War II German Armed Forces personnel information, please contact the Deutsche Dienstelle (WASt), Postfach 51 06 57, D-13400 Berlin, Germany. The website is https://www.dd-wast.de/.


          Finally, the Hauptarchiv der NSDAP, along with some Himmler and Streicher papers, and a substantial amount of Bavarian Political Police files were filmed for the Hoover Institution at the Berlin Document Center (155 rolls). Reference copies of this collection are available for use at the National Archives (T-581). Reproductions may be purchased from the Publications Department, the Hoover Institution, Stanford, CA  94305 that also published the finding aid NSDAP Hauptarchiv: Guide to Hoover Institution Microfilm Collection (Stanford: 1964).


          We hope this information is helpful. Best of luck with your research!