Search for Nazi-confiscated property begins in Goethe University Frankfurt library
The University Library Johann Christian Senckenberg at Goethe University Frankfurt am Main has begun to examine its historic stock for Nazi-confiscated property. The German Lost Art Foundation is funding the project over a period of two years.
Around 79,000 volumes will be reviewed in total, with the focus on the Library’s central library in Bockenheim. Under investigation are books that came into the holdings between 1942 and 1945.
A large proportion of these originate from the Offenbach Archival Depot, which was set up by the US military administration after the Second World War for the purpose of returning looted property to its owners. It was not possible to return many of the books at that time because their origin could not be accurately determined. The remaining works were subsequently distributed among various libraries.
Sample checks have previously revealed a number of suspect cases, for example through indicators like the handwritten signature of a Jewish scientist or the bookplate of a Jewish nurse.