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Otto Wittmann papers relating to the Art Looting Investigation Unit of the United States Office of Strategic Services, 1933-2000, bulk 1945-1946

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Otto Wittmann papers relating to the Art Looting Investigation Unit of the United States Office of Strategic Services

Container List

Series I. Reports related to art looting during World War II, 1944-1950 1.67 Linear Feet (4 boxes)
The series consists of reports related to art looting that were prepared by the Art Investigation Looting Unit (ALIU) of the OSS and reports prepared by other allied agencies, including the Commission for the Protection and Restitution of Cultural Material in London. It appears that the reports were received by Otto Wittmann during his employment at the OSS and also gathered in 1990-1991, when he placed orders with the National Archives to receive copies of all the reports prepared by the ALIU.
Arrangement
Series I. Reports related to art looting in Europe during World War II is arranged into two subseries: Series II.A. Reports of the Office of Strategic Services (OSS) Art Looting Investigation Unit (ALIU); Series I.B. Other reports.
Series I.A. Reports of the Office of Strategic Services (OSS), Art Looting Investigation Unit (ALIU), 1945-1946 1.25 Linear Feet (3 boxes)
The primary work accomplished by the ALIU of the Office of Strategic Services (OSS) was to issue twelve Detailed Interrogation Reports (DIRs), three Consolidation Interrogation Reports (CIRS), and a Final Report, issued in May 1946, all of which are included in the collection of papers. Several other reports were prepared after Spring 1946, such as an unnumbered DIR on Hans Wendland, which was produced by Otto Wittmann in collaboration with Bernard Taper of the MFA&A and a report of the mission that Otto Wittmann accomplished between June and September 1946 in Europe.
To see online these reports and further descriptions of the mission of the ALIU, see the National Archives, where the reports were deposited, and related descriptions of these reports: https://www.archives.gov/ In particular, see: https://www.archives.gov/research/holocaust/art/oss-art-looting-investigation-unit-reports.html
Arrangement
Series I.A. Reports of the Office of Strategic Services (OSS), Art Looting Investigation Unit (ALIU) is arranged into four groupings: Detailed Interrogation Reports (DIRs), Consolidated Interrogation Reports (CIRs), Final report; Other reports.
Detailed Interrogation Reports (DIRs), 1945-1946
Included here are DIR nos. 1-7, 9-13, which were issued by the ALIU. A DIR no. 8 on Kajetan Muehlmann's role in the organized German looting of art of Poland and the Netherlands was also contemplated, but became a US-Dutch collaborative endeavor that had not issued a report at the time of the ALIU's final report. A DIR no. 14 on Maria Dietrich was planned, but in the end not issued, with the account of her activities incorporated into CIR no. 4. A DIR no. 15 on Rose Bauer, the secretary of Kajetan Muehlmann, was contemplated, but ultimately not issued.
Box Folder
3 1 DIR no. 1: Heinrich Hoffmann, 1945 July 1
Author: Theodore Rousseau, Jr. Lieutenant, USNR.
3 2 DIR no. 2: Ernst Buchner, 1945 July 31
Author: Theodore Rousseau, Jr. Lieutenant, USNR.
3 3 DIR no. 3: Robert Scholz, 1945 August 15
Author: J. S. Plaut, Lieutenant, USNR Director.
3 4 DIR no. 4: Gustav Rochlitz, 1945 August 15
Author: J. S. Plaut, Lieutenant, USNR Director.
3 5 DIR no. 5: Gunther Schiedlausky, 1945 August 15
Author: J. S. Plaut, Lieutenant, USNR Director.
3 6 DIR no. 6: Bruno Lohse, 1945 August 15
Author: Theodore Rousseau, Jr. Lieutenant, USNR.
3 7 DIR no. 7: Gisela Limberger, 1945 September 15
Author: Theodore Rousseau, Jr. Lieutenant, USNR.
3 8 DIR no. 9: Walter Andreas Hofer, 1945 September 15
Author: Theodore Rousseau, Jr. Lieutenant, USNR.
3 9 DIR no. 10: Karl Kress, 1945 August 15
Author: J. S. Plaut, Lieutenant, USNR Director.
3 10 DIR no. 11: Walter Bornheim, 1945 September 15
Author: Theodore Rousseau, Jr. Lieutenant, USNR.
3 11 DIR no. 12: Herman Voss, 1945 September 15
Author: S. L. Faison, Jr., Lieutenant, USNR.
3 12 DIR no. 13: Karl Haberstock, 1946 May 1
Author: Theodore Rousseau, Jr. Lt. Comdr., USNR.
3 13 Report A: Wildenstein
3 14 Report B: Adolf Wuester, 1945
3 15 Combined Index of Detailed Reports
Combined Index of Detailed Reports including Wildenstein (A) and Wuester (B); nos. 1, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 10, 12, A, B.
3 15 Indices
Indexes to DIR nos. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 9, 10, 11, 12; Index to Miedl Reports; B (Adolf Wuester)
Consolidated Interrogation Reports (CIRs), 1945
Included here are the three CIRs that were issued: CIR no. 1, 2, 4. The ALIU did not compile CIR no. 3 on German methods of acquisition, due to serious limitations in time and personnel, as stated in the unit's final report.
Box Folder
1 1-2 CIR no. 1: Activity of the Einsatzstab Rosenberg in France, 1945 August 15
Author: J. S. Plaut, Lieutenant, USNR Director.
1 1 Index
1 2 Report
1 2 Attachments 1-19
1 3-11 CIR no. 2: The Goering Collection, 1945 September 15
Author: Theodore Rousseau, Jr. Lieutenant, USNR.
1 3 Index
1 2-8 Report
1 9-11 Attachments 1-70
Box Folder
2 1-2 CIR no. 4: Linz: Hitler's Museum and Library, 1945 December 15
Author: S. L. Faison, Jr., Lieutenant, USNR.
2 1 Index
2 2 Report
2 3-6 Attachments 1-82
2 7 Supplement
Author: S. L. Faison, Jr. Lt., Comdr. USNR.
Box Folder
3 16 Final report, 1946 May 1
Other reports, 1945-1946
Other reports, including reports prepared by Otto Wittmann and Bernard Taper after the ALIU had issued its final report in May 1946, are found here.
Box Folder
3 17 Report on progress of special art loot investigation at Alt Aussee during the period 8-30 June 1945, 1945 June 30
Author: James S. Plaut, Lieutenant, USNR.
3 18 Report: Subject: Hans van Meegeren, 1945 November 8
3 19 DIR: Hans Wendland, 1946 September 18
Authors: Otto Wittmann, Jr. for SSU and Bernard Taper for MFA&A.
3 20 ALIU: Final mission to Europe (10 June 1946-24 September 1946), 1946 October 14
Author: Otto Wittmann, Jr.
Series I.B. Other reports, 1944-1950 0.42 Linear Feet (1 box)
The archive includes reports prepared by agencies other than the ALIU of the OSS, in the United States, England, and France, including reports from the Roberts Commission, the Commission for the Protection and Restitution of Cultural Material in London and the DGER in France.
Arrangement
Series I.B. Other reports is arranged according to the following groupings: United States, England, and France.
United States
The reports are listed in chronological order.
Box Folder
4 1 Civil Affairs Guide: Field Protection of Objects of Art and Archives, 1944 May 12
Report of the American Commission for the Protection and Salvage of Artistic and Historic Monuments in War Areas.
4 2 German Universities. Faculties of Art History, 1944
Corrections and additions are from AMG-77, Revised list of German personnel, dated 27 November 1944.
4 3 Appreciation of Enemy Methods of Looting Works of Art in Occupied Territory, 1945 March 20
Supreme Headquarters Allied Expeditionary Force G-5 Division.
4 4 Collection of German Letters and Memoranda Pertaining to Confiscation of European Art Treasures, 1945 May 19
Secured by 1st Lt. James J. Rorimer, G-5 Monuments, Fine Arts and Archives Officer, Seventh Army from Dr. Schiedlausky and Bruno Lohse.
4 5 Looted Art in Occupied Territories: Neutral Countries and Latin America, 1945 August
Revised. Foreign economic administration. Enemy Branch: External Economic Security Staff.
4 6 Decision of the ERR in answer to the protest of the 26 July 1941 made by the general commission for Jewish questions of the French government made against the confiscation of art treasures in Jewish possession, 1945 August 9 (1941)
Gerhard Utikal, ERR, 3 November 1941; translation by Mrs. R. Phelps, 9 August 1945
box folder
4 7 Report of the American Commission for the Protection and Salvage of Artistic and Historic Monuments in War Areas, 1946
Box Folder
4 7 MFA&A address list, 1946
Author: Edith Standen; Received: October 1950.
4 8 Report: Subject: Carl W. Buemming, 1947 January 17
Author: Bernard B. Taper, Art Intelligence Officer.
4 9 Temporary retention in the United States of certain German paintings, 1948 March 4, April 16
Hearings before a subcommittee of the Committee on Armed Services, United States Senate.
England
Included is a report by Douglas Cooper and reports from the Commission for the Protection and Restitution of Cultural Material, London.
Box Folder
4 10 Report on the German Kunstschutz In Italy between 1943 and 1945, 1945 June 30
Author: Douglas Cooper.
4 11 List of French valuers, auctioneers and auction firms, based on Volume II. Kunstpresverzeichnis (1940-1941), Berlin, 1943. 1946 July 16
4 11 List of French art dealers, 1945 July 16
France
Included are reports from the DGER (Direction générale des études et recherches).
Box Folder
4 12 Liste des membres de l'organisation Rosenberg à travers les pays occupés et en Allemagne à la date du 9 novembre 1943
4 12 Personnel Linsatzstat Rosenberg
4 12 Main mise allemande sur les œuvres d'art françaises
Ref: 32-1-10/DocVII/RC. Organe de recherches des criminels de guerre: section des études culturelles: bulletin de renseignements.
4 13 Recueil de documents français et allemands
Recueil de documents français et allemands classés chronologiquement concernant la saisie des œuvres d'art et matériel culturel en général, en contravention avec la convention de La Haye (Article 46).
Series II. Personal papers, 1933-1997 1.25 Linear Feet (3 boxes)
In the personal files are kept documentation on Otto Wittmann's military draft beginning in 1941, papers related to the work he performed during his employment in the OSS, which was dismantled and folded into a unit named Strategic Services Unit, and files that testify to his career-long interest in the mission of the OSS related to art looting in Europe during World War II. The series includes the Detailed Interrogation Report that Wittmann prepared on Wendland in collaboration with Bernard Taper of the Monuments, Fine Arts, and Archives Section (MFA&A); the report on Wittmann's mission in Europe during the summer of 1946; as well as background material to the reports. The files related to ALIU are in folders labeled ORION, named after the hunter in Greek mythology, which was the code name for the unit.
Arrangement
Series II. Otto Wittmann personal papers are arranged into two subseries: Series II.A. Personal files related to World War II; Series II.B. Post-war papers. For further documentation on Otto Wittmann, see his papers held at the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian. Note: the files for the war years are often labeled Strategic Services Unit, rather than OSS, as this was the official name of the unit during Wittmann's employment.
Series II.A. Personal files related to World War II, 1933-1946 0.83 Linear Feet (2 boxes)
Otto Wittmann personal files related to World War II document his military service and the mission in Europe during his employment in the Stragetic Services Unit.
Arrangement
Series II.A. Papers related to World War II is divided into three groupings: General; Army records; Employment in the Strategic Services Unit.
General, 1933-1946
Box Folder
5 1 Resumes, 1944, 1946
5 2 Address books, 1933-1944, 1939, 1944
Army records, 1944-1952
Box Folder
5 3 Summary notes, undated
5 4-5 Appointment documents, 1942-1952
Employment in the Strategic Services Unit, 1946
Arrangement
Employment in the Strategic Services Unit is arranged into four groupings: General; Correspondence; Writings; Research files.
General, 1946
Box Folder
5 6 Summary notes, undated
5 7 Photograph, 1946
5 8-9 Appointment documents, 1946
5 10-11 Address books, 1946
5 12 Diary, 1946
5 13 Travel documentation, 1946
5 14 Brief dictionary of German intelligence and police terms, undated
5 15 Pay + tax, 1946
Correspondence, 1946
The files include letters sent to and/or received from George Baker, Avery B. Cohan, Harry Conover, A. S. Henraux, Lamont Moore, James S. Plaut, Paul J. Sachs and the following institutions: Department of State, War Department, Fogg Art Museum, National Gallery of Art, and diplomatic services in Europe.
Box Folder
5 16 1946 February-1946 May
5 17 1946 June
5 18 1946 July
5 19 1946 August
5 20 1946 September
5 21 1946 October-1946 November
5 22 Photocopies
Writings, 1946
Box Folder
6 1 Typescript, 1946
Typescript for article in Magazine of Art.
6 2 Detailed Interrogation Report: Hans Wendland, 1946 September 18
Authors: Otto Wittmann, Jr. for SSU and Bernard Taper for MFA&A.
6 3 Art Looting Investigation Unit: Final mission to Europe (10 June 1946-24 September 1946), 1946 October 14
Author: Otto Wittmann, Jr.
Research files, 1946
Box Folder
6 4-5 Background material to Wendland report, 1946
6 6 France and Germany, 1946
6 7-10 X2 Project (Orion), 1946
Series II.B. Post-war papers, 1946-1998 0.42 Linear Feet (1 box)
The post-war records include correspondence in which Wittmann discusses his war experience, as well as lecture notes and research files related to the topic of art looting during World War II.
Arrangement
Series II.B. Post-war papers is arranged into five groupings: Correspondence; Lectures; Writings; Research files; Miscellaneous.
Correspondence, 1958-1998
Box Folder
7 1 Archives of American Art, 1990
7 2 Erburu, Robert and Paul Gottlieb, 1995
7 3 Hall, Ardelia, 1958
7 4 Naftali, Timothy, 1997-1998
Relates to Oral History Project.
7 5 National Archives, Washington D.C., 1990-1991
Relates to the declassification of OSS reports.
7 6 Sawyer, Charles. H., 1985
Charles H. Sawyer letters related to his role in the OSS, with copy of letter from Sawyer to Naftanali, 1985.
7 7 Smyth, Craig H., 1990 August 31
7 8 Miscellaneous, 1986-1992
Lectures, 1949-1971
The files include lectures related to the traveling exhibition European Masterpieces from Berlin Museums, whose ten-day venue in Toledo attracted over 100,000 visitors, and for which heightened security had to be organized in part because of the lingering animosity of visitors against Germany.
Box Folder
7 9 Toledo Chapter, Reserve Officers Association, 1949 March 7
7 10 Toledo Artists Club, 1949 May 29
7 11 Aides, 1971 May 3
Lecture titled "Art and War."
Writings, 1995-1997
Box Folder
7 12 "Spoils of War: Restitution or Trophy?," The American Society of the French Legion of Honor Newsletter, 1995
7 13 "The Getty Center: Its Past, Present & Future," The American Society of the French Legion of Honor Newsletter, 1997
Research files, 1945-1997
Box Folder
7 14 Berlin paintings tour in the United States, 1949-1997
7 15 Johannes Felbermeyer photographic files, Getty Research Center, 1990, undated
7 16 Göring files, 1945-1995
7 17 Lynn Nicholas files, 1993-1995
7 18 Miscellaneous, 1975-1987
Series III. Publications related to art looting during World War II, 1946-1984 0.27 Linear Feet (9 folders)
The publications are primarily exhibition catalogs that testify to the work done shortly after the war in France, Italy and the United States to advertise the recovery effort of artwork looted during the war. Also included are articles by James Plaut, who served as director of the ALIU of the Office of Strategic Services (OSS) in 1944-1946.
Arrangement
Series III.B. Publications is arranged into three groupings: Exhibition catalogs; Other publications; Miscellaneous.
Exhibition catalogs, 1945-1984
Includes the modest publication of the exhibition catalog for Les chefs-d'œuvre des collections françaises, an exhibition that Wittmann was able to see and that opened in June at the Orangerie in Paris to display artworks returned from Germany and that Wittmann was able to see.
Box folder
8 1 Works of Art in Italy, 1945
Works of Art in Italy: Losses and Survivals in the War. Part I. South of Bologna. London. H.M. Stationery Office, 1945.
8 2 Les chefs-d'œuvre des collections françaises, 1946
Les chefs-d'œuvre des collections françaises retrouvés en Allemagne par la Commission de récuperation artistique et les services alliés, [exposition, Orangerie des Tuileries, juin-aout 1946].
8 3 War's Toll of Italian Art, 1947
War's Toll of Italian Art. An exhibition sponsored by the American Committee for the Restoration of Italian Monuments, [1947].
8 3 Paintings Looted from Holland, 1948
Paintings Looted from Holland Returned through the Efforts of the United States Armed Forces. Exhibition December 7, 1946-January 1, 1948.
8 4 Masterpieces on Tour, 1948
Masterpieces on Tour: 23 German-owned Paintings. Author: Harry A McBride. Washington, D.C. [National Geographic Society], 1948.
8 5 Recovered Works of Art, 1984
Recovered Works of Art : Dedicated to Rodolfo Siviero, Firenze, Palazzo Vecchio, beginning June 29, 1984, Comune di Firenze, Centro Mostre. [Florence]: Cantini edizioni d'arte, 1984.
Other publications, 1945-1947
Box Folder
8 6 Matthews, Herbert. "Italian Art under Shellfire," May 1945
8 7 Meiss, Millard. "War's Toll of Italian Art," 1947
8 8 Plaut, James S. "Retrieving the Loot: The Story of the Nazi Art Thieving Machine," Artnews (August 1946): 15-17. 1946
8 8 Plaut, James S. "Loot for the Master Race," The Atlantic (September 1946): 57-64. 1946
8 9 Miscellaneous, undated
Series IV. Newspaper clippings, 1941-2000 0.55 Linear Feet (12 folders, 1 box)
Otto Wittmann gathered news accounts related to Goering, Hitler, the Nuremberg trials, and the Office of Stragetic Services (OSS), as well as post-war discoveries of art looted during World War II. Wittmann indicated that the source of the newspaper clippings, primarily those from 1945, was the office of OSS in Washington, D.C., while some were gathered in other files of his.
Arrangement
Arranged in two groupings: Chronology; Topics. For further clippings related to World War II that were gathered by Otto Wittmann, see Scrapbook in: Otto Wittmann papers, 1932-1996, Archives of American Art, Box 10, Folder 1.
Chronology, 1944-1997
Box Folder
8 10 Summary notes
8 11 1944
8 12-15 1945
Includes Time Magazine Special Commemorative Issue (May 14, 1945), XLV: no. 20
8 16-18 1946
8 19 1947
8 20 1948
8 21 1949
8 22-23 1971-1997
Topics 1941-2000
Box Folder
9 1 Army life, 1941-1996
9 2 Henry Hyde: Obituary, 1997
9 3 Faison Lane: Obituary, 1997
9 4-5 Muchnic, Suzanne. "On the Trails of Spoils of War," Los Angeles Times, 1995 June 4, 1995
Biography of Otto Wittmann.
9 6 OSS, undated
9 7-12 OSS post-war discoveries, 1993-2000


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