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World War II: primary sources

World War II in Europe

Conditions & Politics in Occupied Western Europe, 1940-1945
Digital collection of British Foreign Office documents from FO371, the National Archives of the UK. Describes political conditions, resistance to the German occupation, economic and social conditions and intelligence operations

France During World War II: Documents from the Howard Rice Collection
Microfilm 04816
Printed guide: none
Microfilm of a collection of French resistance periodicals and pamphlets held here in Special Collections. Covers 1940-1944.

Propaganda relating to World War II, including pre- and post-war years, 1920-1949
Rare Books D810.P6 .P766 oversize [55 boxes]
Finding aids:

World War II, Occupation, and the Civil War in Greece, 1940-1949: Records of the U.S. State Department Classified Files Archives Unbound
Material from the U.S. National Archives.

Intergovernmental Committee on Refugees Archives Unbound
"The Intergovernmental Committee on Refugees (IGCR) was organized in London in August 1938 as a result of the Evian Conference of July 1938, which had been called by President Roosevelt to consider the problem of racial, religious, and political refugees from central Europe."

The Economy and War in the Third Reich, 1933-1944 Archives Unbound
"This official statistical source provides rare, detailed data on the German economic situation during the Third Reich up to and throughout World War II. Consisting of Monatliche Nachweise-ber den Auswartigen Handel Deutschlands (January 1933-June 1939); Der Aussenhandel Deutschlands Monatliche Nachweise (July 1939); and Sondernachweis der Aussenhandel Deutschlands (August 1939-1944)."

Nationalsozialismus, Holocaust, Widerstand und Exil 1933-1945 Collection of primary sources on the history of the National Socialist state, Nazi ideology, and the Third Reich, from the perspective of both supporters and opponents of the regime. Includes administrative records, personal writings, propaganda, and biographical and reference sources. Note: most sources are in German.

La France pendant la guerre 1939-1945: Résistance et journaux de Vichy (Voices from Wartime France 1939-1945: Clandestine Resistance and Vichy Newspapers) Archives Unbound
"Providing perspectives from both the Vichy government and the resistance movement, this unique collection constitutes the sum of the French press that actually reached Britain during the Occupation of 1940-44. It is the record of what was known by the British about the hearts and minds of the French people at the most dramatic period of their shared history." From the British Library.

Nazi Bank and Financial Institutions: U.S. Military Government Investigation Reports and Interrogations of Nazi Financiers, 1945-1949 Archives Unbound

"Comprises two records collections of the Office of the Finance Division and Finance Advisor in the Office of Military Government, U.S. Zone (Germany) (OMGUS), during the period 1945-1949. These records are part of Records of United States Occupation Headquarters, World War II, Record Group (RG) 260."

Nazism in Poland: The Diary of Governor-General Hans Frank Archives Unbound

"This collection reproduces the Tagebuch or journal of Dr. Hans Frank (1900-1946), the Governor-General of German-occupied Poland from October 1939 until early 1945. Source note: RG 238: National Archives Collection of World War II War Crimes Records, T992: Diary of Hans Frank, 1939-1945."

SAFEHAVEN Reports on Nazi Looting of Occupied Countries and Assets in Neutral Countries Archives Unbound "SAFEHAVEN was the code name of a project of the Foreign Economic Administration, in cooperation with the State Department and the military services, to block the flow of German capital across neutral boundaries and to identify and observe all German overseas investments. In order to coordinate research and intelligence-sharing regarding SAFEHAVEN-related topics, the War Crimes Branch received SAFEHAVEN reports from various agencies of the U.S. Government, as well as SAFEHAVEN-related military attaché reports, regarding the clandestine transfer of German assets outside of Germany that could be used to rebuild the German war machine or the Nazi party after the war, as well as art looting and other acts that elicited the interest of Allied intelligence agencies during the war. Another aspect of the SAFEHAVEN project was the restoration of looted art treasures to their rightful owners. From RG 153, Records of the Office of the Judge Advocate General (Army), War Crimes Branch, SAFEHAVEN Reports."

Patriotes aux Armes! (Patriots to Arms!): The Underground Resistance in France, Belgium, Holland, and Italy, 1939-1945 Archives Unbound "This collection consists of newspapers and periodicals; broadsides; leaflets; and books and pamphlets and other documents produced by or relating to the underground resistance in France, Belgium, Holland, and Italy."

Anti-fascist newsletters of the International Transport Workers' Federation  British Online Archives "These two newsletters published fortnightly by the ITF (i.e. Internationale Transportarbeiter Foederation) between 1933 and 1945. Based on analyses of other newspapers of the day, the editorial policy was to give information about social policy as well as reports from cadres working under cover. In this way it provides a unique insight into life under fascist regimes."

Psychological Warfare and Propaganda in World War II: Air Dropped and Shelled Leaflets and Periodicals Archives Unbound "This publication collection consists of over 1,000 air dropped and shelled leaflets and periodicals created and disseminated during the Second World War. The majority of items in this collection were printed by the Allies then air or container dropped, or fired by artillery shell over German occupied territory. Many leaflets and periodicals have original publication codes and were printed in over 10 languages. Only shelled leaflets, Germans to Allies (115 items), are in English."

Allied Propaganda in World War II and the British Political Warfare Executive Archives Unbound

This collection presents the complete files of the Political Warfare Executive (PWE) kept at the U.K. National Archives as FO 898 from its instigation to closure in 1946, along with the secret minutes of the special 1944 War Cabinet Committee "Breaking the German Will to Resist." Source Note: FO 898, Political Warfare Executive and Foreign Office, Political Intelligence Department: Papers.


The Holocaust

The Jewish Question: Records from the Berlin Document Center Archives Unbound

"This collection comprises documents from a wide variety of sources, including the Gestapo, local police and government offices, Reich ministries, businesses, etc., pertaining to Jewish communities. The material is from Record Group 242, World War II Collection of Seized Enemy Records, T-457: Documents Concerning Jews in the Berlin Document Center."

Testaments to the Holocaust Digital Archive
Digital edition of material from the Wiener Library collection of eyewitness accounts, photographs, propaganda, and printed material documenting Jewish life in Germany from 1933 to after the war.

Correspondence from German Concentration Camps and Prisons Archives Unbound
"Collection consists of items originating from prisoners held in German concentration camps, internment and transit camps, Gestapo prisons, and POW camps, during and just prior to World War II. Most of the collection consists of letters written or received by prisoners, but also includes receipts for parcels, money orders and personal effects; paper currency; and realia, including Star of David badges that Jews were forced to wear." From McMaster University.

Jewish Underground Resistance: The David Diamant Collection Archives Unbound
"David Diamant is the pseudonym of David Erlich, a Jewish communist and committed member of the underground resistance during World War II. This collection consists of original documents collected by Diamant over a period of approximately 30 years dealing primarily with the Jewish segment of the French underground resistance; many of the documents originate with communist groups, and some deal with Polish groups. Most of the documents are in French, while some are in Yiddish." From McMaster University.

U.S. Relations with the Vatican and the Holocaust, 1940-1950 Archives Unbound
"This collection consists of telegrams, despatches, reports, and letters between Taylor [the president’s representative to the Vatican], and his staff, the State Department, other U.S. government agencies, the Vatican, and the Italian government. There are materials on political affairs, Jews, refugee and relief activities, German-owned property in Rome, property rights, and the Vatican Bank. In addition, there are materials on Axis diplomats, war criminals, protocols and religious statements, and records of the peace efforts of the Vatican."

Holocaust and the Concentration Camp Trials: Prosecution of Nazi War Crimes Archives Unbound

RG153, Records of the Office of the Judge Advocate General (Army), War Crimes Branch, Entry 149: Records of Concentration Camp Trials, National Archives, College Park, MD.

German Anti-Semitic Propaganda, 1909-1941 Archives Unbound

"This collection comprises 170 German-language titles of books and pamphlets. The collection presents anti-Semitism as an issue in politics, economics, religion, and education. Most of the writings date from the 1920s and 1930s and many are directly connected with Nazi groups. The works are principally anti-Semitic, but include writings on other groups as well, including Jehovah’s Witnesses, the Jesuits, and the Freemasons. Also included are history, pseudo-history, and fiction."

David Irving's private research collection British Online Archives "David Irving is a British historian of World War II. He achieved notoriety when he was accused of Holocaust denial, particularly after 1996, following the unsuccessful attempt to clear his name of the charge. The documents in this collection comprise both Irving's personal notes and a significant proportion of the copies of original documents that he used, enabling researchers to draw their own conclusions on two levels: historical and historiographic."

Nuremburg Laws and Nazi Annulment of German Jewish Nationality Archives Unbound

"This collection consists of index cards listing the name, date and place of birth, occupation and last address of Jews whose German citizenship was revoked in accordance with the "Nuremberg Laws" of 1935, including Jews from Germany, Austria and Czech Bohemia. The cards are generally in alphabetical order. Suffix names "Israel" for men and "Sara" for women were added by law in 1936 to readily identify persons of Jewish descent. Source: Record Group 242: National Archives Collection of Foreign Records Seized, T-355: Name Index of Jews Whose German Nationality Was Annulled by the Nazi Regime, Records of the Berlin Document Center."

Stars and Stripes

The Army's newspaper, which had several editions.

5th Army (Salerno) (1943-1978)

Algiers Daily (1943)

Algiers - North Africa (1943)

Casablanca (1943-1944)

Combat - Rome (1943)

ESS ("in-house" newspaper for staff of Mediterranean - Rome edition) (1945-1946)

European edition (Darmstadt) (1948-1999)

London (1942-1945)

Mediterranean - Algiers (1942-1945)

Mediterranean - Besançon (1944)

Mediterranean - Grenoble (1944)

Mediterranean - Livorno (1944)

Mediterranean - Marseilles (1944-1945)

Mediterranean - Naples (1943-1945)

Mediterranean - Nice (1944)

Mediterranean - Rome (1944-1946)

Middle East - Cairo (1943-1944)

Nancy (1944-1945)

Nice (1945)

Nice - Marseilles (1944)

Northern Ireland (1943-1944)

Oran (1943-1944)

Pacific (Tokyo) (1948-1999)

Paris (1944-1946)

Paris - Nice - Marseilles (1944)

Rome (1944-1962)

Sicily (1943-1944)

Southern France (1945)

Southern Germany (1945-1946)

Stars and Stripes at Sea (off Tunisia) (1943)

Strasbourg (1943-1945)

Tunis (1943-1944)