Website of the German Lost Art Foundation

Tübingen city museum restitutes gold scales - Foundation funds the research

Date 2017.11.15

Tübin­gen city mu­se­um has re­turned a set of small gold scales dat­ing from the 18th cen­tu­ry to the heirs of their Jew­ish for­mer own­er, Adolf Dessauer. The scales had been iden­ti­fied as Nazi-con­fis­cat­ed prop­er­ty. The resti­tu­tion is the re­sult of a three-year re­search project fund­ed by the Ger­man Lost Art Foun­da­tion in Magde­burg.

The scales were ac­quired from the es­tate of the el­der­ly op­ti­cian Adolf Dessauer for 10 Re­ichs­marks on Jan­uary 11, 1939. It has not been pos­si­ble to re­con­struct the cir­cum­stances of the sale in their en­tire­ty. The scales might al­so have been passed to fam­i­ly mem­bers, who lived in Tübin­gen and Stuttgart, in 1939. The city mu­se­um there­fore as­sumes that they were re­lin­quished un­der pres­sure in or­der to pay com­pul­so­ry tax­es. For that rea­son, the City of Tübin­gen de­cid­ed to give the scales back to Dessauer’s heirs.

Since April 2015, the city mu­se­um has been sys­tem­at­i­cal­ly re­search­ing the prove­nance of ob­jects in its col­lec­tions that are sus­pect­ed of be­ing cul­tur­al as­sets seized as a re­sult of Nazi per­se­cu­tion (Nazi-con­fis­cat­ed prop­er­ty). The aim is to re­turn ob­jects with prob­lem­at­ic ori­gins where ap­pro­pri­ate.

Project de­scrip­tion (on­ly Ger­man ver­sion)

Restitution einer Goldwaage aus dem Stadtmuseum Tübingen Restitution einer Goldwaage aus dem Stadtmuseum Tübingen Eine kleine Goldwaage aus dem Besitz des Stadtmuseums hat die Erste Bürgermeisterin Dr. Christine Arbogast an die Urenkel des jüdischen Vorbesitzers Adolf Dessauer übergeben. Das Familienerbstück wurde um 1750 aus Birnbaumholz, Messing und Stahl gefertigt. Die Waage war 1939 weit unter Wert und vermutlich unter Zwang verkauft worden. Source:  Stadtmuseum Tübingen