Берлинское сионистское объединение

  • Berliner zionistische Vereinigung; Berlin Zionist Union*
  • Berlinskoe sionistskoe ob"edinenie
Language of Description
1915 - 1938
Level of Description
  • English
  • German
  • Hebrew
  • Hebrew
  • Latin

Extent and Medium

33 files

Biographical History

The Berlin Zionist Union (BZU), a local chapter of the Zionist Federation of Germany, was founded in 1897 at the initiative of Heinrich Lowe. According to its charter, the BZU aimed to support the creation of a Jewish national home in Palestine. The union sought to assist in the settlement of Palestine, strengthen Jewish national selfconsciousness, and propagate Zionist ideology in Germany. Membership in the BZU was open to any Jew who in his or her application indicated agreement with the basic principles of the Basel Platform. The BZU was led by a board, composed of a chairman and between five and seven board members and elected by a delegate assembly (Vertretersammlung). Together with the delegate assembly, the board decided the personal composition of the finance committee, the Palestine committee, the committee on the Hebrew language and cultural work, the propaganda committee, the committee on work with Jews from the countries of the East, and the committee on youth work. The BZU was reorganized in 1932. The union was led in the interwar period by B. Cohen, S. Chertok, and A. Schwarz. It published the weekly newspaper, Nachrichtenblatt der BZU (1922), and the weekly Berliner Jüdische Zeitung (1929-30). The BZU was disbanded in 1938 soon after Kristallnacht.

Scope and Content

The collection's contents are catalogued in one inventory; the inventory is arranged by document type. The collection includes the charter of the BZU; minutes of meetings of the BZU board for 1937; minutes of sessions of electoral caucuses, and materials on the election of delegates to the delegate assembly; minutes of the 1936 twenty-fifth congress of the Zionist Federation of Germany; minutes of preelection meetings of BZU members for 1938; circulars on admitting new members and on improving the work of Hebrew language courses; membership cards; and instruction booklets for new members. There is also a report of the editorial board of the newspaper Jüdische Rundschau for 1938. The collection contains BZU financial documents: balance sheets for 1930-38; statements of membership dues paid, income statements, and logs of dues-paying members for 1936-38; resolutions of the finance commission regarding property issues; a financial statement of the Zionist newspaper/organ Jüdische Rundschau from 9 November 1938. The collection also contains miscellaneous Zionist documents: a report on the work of Keren Kayemeth LeIsrael for 1930 and documents of Zionist congresses, assemblies, and conferences. These include a bulletin, "On Measures in Preparation for the 19th Zionist Congress" (30 April 1935), issued by the central bureau of the World Zionist Organization (WZO) in London, and regulations on holding elections for delegates to the congress; instructions on the election of delegates to the 20th Zionist Congress; documents of the German Zionist Congress of 1936 (attendee reports and minutes); a report by David Ben-Gurion at a meeting of the WZO executive committee on the commencement of activities by the British Royal Commission in Palestine (1937); and indexes to the record-keeping and archival documents of the Zionist Organization in Germany. It also contains a report on the activities of the Vienna chapter of Agudath Israel for the period of 10 May-31 December 1938. There is also correspondence of unrelated provenance, by University of Berlin librarian H. Lowe with Jewish book publishers, institutions, parties, and private individuals on matters of book acquisitions. The collection also has printed materials and periodicals. These include pamphlets and informational bulletins of the Zionist Federation of Germany and the central bureau of the WZO in London. Also deposited in the collection are a set of the newspaper Kongresszeitung for 1923-31 and clippings from Jewish newspapers.

Finding Aids

  • Nazi-Looted Jewish Archives in Moscow. A guide to Jewish Historical and Cultural Collections in the Russian State Military Archive, ed. by D. E. Fishman, M. Kupovetsky, V. Kuzelenkov, Scranton - London 2010.

Existence and Location of Copies

  • Microfilms are held by the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Archives.

Archivist Note

Entry selected by Krzysztof Tyszka from the book “Nazi-Looted Jewish Archives in Moscow. A guide to Jewish Historical and Cultural Collections in the Russian State Military Archive”, ed. by D. E. Fishman, M. Kupovetsky, V. Kuzelenkov

Rules and Conventions

EHRI Guidelines for Description v.1.0