about the Archive
Information about the municipal archives of Dessau-Roßlau, which holdings you can view with us and what services we offer.
Here you can find the archive regulations and the fee catalog. Please inform yourself about the modalities during a visit to the Stadtarchiv Dessau-Roßlau.
Unfortunately, this is only available in German.
If you want to know what’s new in the archive or you want to find out about events in the archive network, take a look here.
Conference “Private Libraries in Saxony-Anhalt 1450-1850” in the Municipal Archives
Tradition, social practice and knowledge horizons
The wealth of historical book collections in Saxony-Anhalt is due not least to private collectors. Professional needs and practical concerns could lead to the establishment of libraries just as much as scientific and literary interests or the spirit of discovery. Not infrequently, piety and the desire for representation were also important motives for collecting. Today, private book collections from the Middle Ages and the early modern period are usually part of larger libraries. They were not always completely integrated and handed down; in many cases they have survived only scattered and fragmentary. When they were taken over, their origin and affiliation were often not made clear. Only a few of the private libraries that have survived in Saxony-Anhalt have been well indexed and intensively researched. This has yet to be done for a majority of them.
The conference “Private Libraries in Saxony-Anhalt 1450-1850”, which will take place from 5 to 7 October 2023 at the Stadtarchiv Dessau-Roßlau, Heidestraße 21 (Alter Wasserturm), will provide conceptual impulses and methodological advice. It will present some private libraries, convey the collecting of books as a social practice and demonstrate possibilities to describe historical knowledge horizons in more detail by indexing private libraries. The conference is organised by the Historical Libraries Working Group of the Historical Commission for Saxony-Anhalt in cooperation with the Wittenberg Research Library on the History of the Reformation.
Participation is free of charge. The organisers ask for registration by e-mail to: email@example.com
The conference will be held in German
Thursday, 5 October 2023
from 5.00 p.m. Registration
6.00 p.m. Welcome and opening of the conference Dr Hermann Kinne, Head of the Dessau Department of the Saxony-Anhalt State Archives
Words of greeting:
Klaus Zimmermann, Staatssekretär im Ministerium für Inneres und Sport des Landes Sachsen- Anhalt Dr. Robert Reck, Oberbürgermeister der Stadt Dessau-Roßlau Prof. Dr. Christoph Volkmar, Vorsitzender der Historischen Kommission für Sachsen-Anhalt
Thiliana – Die Bibliothek des preußischen Diplomaten Hermann Thile (1812–1889)
Dr. Frank Kreißler (Dessau-Roßlau)
Friday, 6 October 2023
9.00 a.m. Privatbibliotheken in Sachsen-Anhalt. Forschungsstand und Problemaufriss
Dr. Matthias Meinhardt (Lutherstadt Wittenberg)
*9.30 a.m. Privatbibliotheken – Sammler und Sammlungen, Nutzen und Nutzung
Prof. Dr. Ursula Rautenberg (Erlangen und Leipzig)
10.15 a.m. Historische Bibliothekslandschaften im Kontext der frühneuzeitlichen Bibliotheksgeschichte – institutionelle Strukturen, soziale Verortungen, regionale Wissenskulturen
Prof. Dr. Axel E. Walter (Eutin und Vilnius)
11.00 a.m. Kaffeepause
11.30 a.m. Historische Bibliothekskataloge als Quelle
Dr. Julia Knödler (Halle/Saale)
12.15 p.m. Handschriftliche Annotationen und Paratexte als Instrument der Bibliotheksrekonstruktion. Das Beispiel des Halberstädter Klerikers Andreas Gronewalt
Helmut Liersch (Goslar)
1.00 p.m. Lunch break with snacks
2.30 p.m. Führung durch das Archiv der Evangelischen Landeskirche Anhalts
Dr. Jan Brademann (Dessau-Roßlau)
4.00 p.m. Coffee break
4.30 p.m. Schätze aus Dessauer Privatbibliotheken – eine Buchpräsentation
Martine Kreißler (Dessau-Roßlau)
6.00 p.m. Evening lecture
Die Bibliothek des Fürstenerziehers Georg Helt
Dr. Gerrit Deutschländer (Halle/Saale)
Saturday, 7 October 2023
9.00 a.m. Die Bibliothek des Flacius Illyricus
Dr. Harald Bollbuck (Göttingen)
9.45 a.m. Die Bibliothek der Grafen von Stolberg-Roßla
Dr. Lupold von Lehsten (Bensheim)
10.30 a.m. „Ein grossen hauffen bucher domals vngezelt, sollen aber volgende gezelt werden“ – Die humanistische Gelehrten – bibliothek von Julius Pflug (1499–1564) und weitere private Büchersammlungen Naumburger Domgeistlicher
Dr. Matthias Ludwig (Naumburg)
11.15 a.m. Coffee break
11.45 a.m. Zwischen Humanismus und Reformation – die Alvenslebensche Bibliothek auf Schloss Hundisburg
Dr. Berthold Heinecke (Hundisburg)
12.30 p.m. Final discussion
© Reformationsgeschichtliche Forschungsbibliothek Wittenberg
Organiser: Historical Libraries Working Group of the Historical Commission for Saxony-Anhalt in cooperation with the Reformation History Research Library Wittenberg
Scientific management: Dr. Jan Brademann, Martine Kreißler, Dr. Matthias Meinhardt
Venue: Dessau, Old Water Tower (Heidestraße 21, 06842 Dessau-Roßlau)
Participation: Participation is free of charge. We ask for registration by e-mail.
Information and registration: Reformationsgeschichtliche Forschungsbibliothek Wittenberg, Schlossplatz 1, 06886 Lutherstadt Wittenberg
E-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org | Tel.: +49 34 91 50 69 200
Travelling exhibition "Landesväter. The Weimar Republic in the Regions" touring exhibition in Dessau-Roßlau from 23.08.-20.09.2023
The Adult Education Centre Dessau-Roßlau begins its autumn semester after the summer holidays with a new, broad-based educational programme. In this context, the Dessau-Roßlau Municipal Archive, in cooperation with the Adult Education Centre, presents the travelling exhibition “Landesväter. The Weimar Republic in the Regions” by the Society for the Study of the History of Democracy (GEDG).
The exhibition in the form of a multimedia station is dedicated to federalism in the Weimar Republic. On the one hand, it presents the state history of the respective region, but also focuses on decisive political actors of the Weimar years. The aim is to recall the supporters and defenders, but also the critics of the Republic, who are largely unknown today.
On 23 August 2023, at 5 p.m., Dr. Marc Bartuschka of the Society for the Study of the History of Democracy will open the touring exhibition with a verbal tour of the exhibition’s concept, the historical background of the Weimar region and its national fathers.
Accessible exhibition venue:
23 August 2023 – 20 September 2023
Monday to Friday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Wednesday, 23 August 2023 at 5 p.m.
The exhibition can be visited free of charge during opening hours. The Stadtarchiv and the Volkshochschule Dessau-Roßlau cordially invite all interested parties to attend.
Tuschezeichnung „Konzentrationslager Roßlau 1933-34“
In the Roßlau “Volkshaus”, a former SPD meeting place, the Anhalt state ministry set up a “transitional concentration camp” on 12 September 1933, which existed until 31 July 1934. During this period, 250 to 300 male political prisoners were imprisoned and mistreated there. Almost all of them came from Anhalt. The camp was directly subordinate to the Dessau chief prosecutor Erich Lämmler, and the guard force consisted of members of SS Standarte 59. The prisoners who were fit for work had to perform forced labour in Roßlau and the surrounding area; physical and mental abuse by the guard force, but also by members of the Dessau political police, was the order of the day. A memorial stone in Roßlau commemorates the prisoners of the concentration camp.
Among those tortured in Roßlau – and earlier in the Oranienburg concentration camp – was Hugo Jacoby (1875-1935), a Dessau communist and functionary of the proletarian Red Aid of Jewish descent. He died soon afterwards, on 17 August 1935, in Dessau and was buried in the Israelite cemetery. Mrs Elisabeth Seger and her daughter Renate, who was barely one and a half years old, were also imprisoned in Roßlau – in “forced detention” so that her husband Gerhart Seger would surrender to the German authorities. The Social Democrat Gerhart Seger had been able to escape from the Oranienburg concentration camp to Prague in December 1933, where he wrote down his account of his experience, “Oranienburg: First Authentic Report of a Man Escaping from the Concentration Camp”, which received great international attention after its publication. After fierce public protests, Elisabeth and Renate Seger had to be released from the Roßlau concentration camp on 19 May 1934. Former prisoners of the Roßlau concentration camp also wrote down memoirs, some of which are in the Dessau-Roßlau municipal archives. These include the report by Walter Berger, which is also accompanied by an ink drawing presented by the Dessau-Roßlau Municipal Archives as Archive of the Month for September 2023.
City Archive Dessau-Roßlau in the Archive Network Dessau.
Archival of the Month July 2023
“Concentration camp Roßlau 1933-34”, ink drawing by Walter Berger (o. D.)
Signature: M 07 No. 90
Letter from Bauhaus Director Hannes Meyer to Mayor Fritz Hesse concerning the redesign of the Municipal Reading Hall, 7 June 1928.
On 2 October 1897, Dessau’s municipal council decided to purchase a collection of books that the archdeacon Ernst Hesse (1832-1900) had kept as the Christian People’s Library in Zerbster Straße 39 since 1871. With this collection of books as a foundation, the municipal public library opened its doors on 1 May 1898 in the building at Zerbster Straße 66. By the end of its first year of existence, 958 readers had already used the library and borrowed a total of 23,892 books. In the Municipal People’s Library, readers found “works by the most widely read authors, for the most part good and solid works of literature from Germany and abroad”. Only a few years later, the capacity of the building at Zerbster Straße 66 was no longer sufficient. The magistrate acquired the house at Zerbster Strasse 33, which was opposite the town hall, and opened the “Municipal Public Library and Reading Hall” here on 5 January 1905. The reading hall was located on the first floor and had room for 100 readers. At that time, the municipal library had 2,871 permanent readers who could access a media stock of 11,902 volumes. From 1 July 1916, the Municipal Library was closed because its premises were needed for war purposes. It was reopened on 15 September 1919.
In 1928, a comprehensive remodelling of the reading hall, the vestibule and some other rooms of the library was undertaken. The conversion project as well as the implementation of the construction work, including the furnishing with furniture and lamps, was undertaken by the construction department of the Dessau Bauhaus. A corresponding offer for the remodelling of the reading hall, signed by the then director of the Bauhaus Dessau Hannes Meyer (1889-1954) and dated 7 June 1928, is presented by the Dessau-Roßlau Municipal Archives as Archive of the Month for May 2023. The document is part of a magistrate’s file containing further documents on this building project. In the course of the reconstruction of the reading hall, the vestibules and the staircase were also redesigned. The conversion work in the municipal library was completed in October 1928 and cost around 9,000 marks, including the architect’s fee.
The archives of the month of May 2023 as well as other documents can be viewed during the opening hours of the Dessau Archive Association (Mon-Thu 9am-5pm).
New web page
Our homepage is currently being revised. Unfortunately, not all the content of the old website is yet available on the new website.
However, the contents of the old site can still be accessed. You can get there via the following link: https://www.alb-dessau.de/old/
Alexa Hennig von Lange reads from her new novel "Die karierten Mädchen" (The Chequered Girls)
Date: 8 November 2022Time: 19.00 p.m.Location: Marienkirche Dessau
Ticket price: 6,50 € Tickets are available at the tourist information offices in Dessau and Roßlau and at the box office.Organiser: Thalia Dessau in cooperation with Municipal Archives Dessau-Roßlau and JKS Villa Krötenhof
The reading of the book ( Original title „Die karierten Mädchen“) is in German.
It is very rare that our region forms the central location of a novel’s plot. This is the case in the recently published new novel “Die karierten Mädchen” by Alexa Hennig von Lange. For her new book, the author was inspired by her grandmother’s memoirs, which she recorded at an advanced age on more than 130 tape cassettes. The novel is the beginning of a trilogy that starts in 1929
Klara, the protagonist of the novel, gets one of the rare jobs as a home economics teacher in a children’s home in Oranienbaum in the middle of the world economic crisis. Soon the home’s economic situation comes to a head. Klara, who now runs the home, seeks the proximity of the new powers-that-be in the hope of salvation. Too late she realises with whom she has become involved.
The National Socialists turn the house into a women’s educational home. Klara is supposed to instil a love of the people and the child in her pupils instead of educating them to become independent-minded women. At the same time, under the swastika flag and the constant visits of Nazi officials, she is suddenly in danger herself, as she protects a Jewish orphan girl.
Alexa Hennig von Lange, born in 1973, became one of the most successful authors of her generation with her debut novel “Relax” (1997). Numerous other novels, short stories, plays and books for young people followed. In 2002, Alexa Hennig von Lange was awarded the German Youth Literature Prize. With her novel “Die karierten Mädchen” (The Checkered Girls), Alexa Hennig von Lange presents a novel set in a time when the National Socialists gradually subjugated all areas of society, brutality increased and freedom dwindled. She spreads this dark chapter of German history in an exciting, authentic way, with a plausible view of the social developments of the 1930s and against a concrete regional frame of reference. In which the Anhalt towns of Oranienbaum and Dessau play a major role.
Opening Klughardt Exhibition
15 October 2022 at 4 p.m., Foyer of the Anhaltisches Theater.
"A noble artist's heart has ceased to beat!" read an obituary on the front page of the Anhaltischer Staats-Anzeiger on 5 August 1902. And further: "He who gripped and thrilled our hearts with heaven-sprung tones, the lyre has now sunk from him." [...] At his bier, the whole musical world mourns, but it is loyal Anhalt that mourns most deeply for one of its best sons, whose memory will never be extinguished among us." The obituary was dedicated to the Dessau court conductor, composer and pianist Dr. August Klughardt, who had died two days earlier, on 3 August 1902.
August Klughardt was born in Köthen on 30 November 1847. His musical talent emerged early and was encouraged. After completing his musical education, he began his professional career in the summer of 1867 as Kapellmeister at the Stadttheater Posen. This was followed by engagements in Neustrelitz, Dessau, Lübeck and Weimar. From 1873 to 1882 he was a very successful court conductor in Neustrelitz, then he returned to his native Anhalt as court conductor. He led the Dessau court orchestra to new musical heights, celebrated triumphs as an opera conductor and pianist, tirelessly ensured the success of the Anhalt Music Festivals, made Dessau a Wagner stronghold and made a great name for himself as the composer of numerous, frequently performed chamber music and orchestral works. With his works, Klughardt is still present in the musical world today. A grave monument created by Emanuel Semper in Cemetery III and Klughardtstraße in Dessau-Roßlau commemorate this important composer.
On the occasion of his 175th birthday, August Klughardt is being honoured in various ways this year. These include an exhibition by the Dessau-Roßlau City Archive and the Anhalt Theatre Dessau entitled "August Klughardt (1847-1902). Composer, Conductor, Court Kapellmeister". In addition to texts and pictures on the life and work of August Klughardt, the exhibition will feature an oil painting of Klughardt created by August Seelmann, original documents from the Klughardt estate in the city archives and a historic trombone purchased by the conductor for the court orchestra. The exhibition will open in the foyer of the Anhaltisches Theater on 15 October 2022 at 4 p.m. and will be on view there until 27 November during the opening of the theatre on performance days. Marco Zabel from Neustrelitz will speak about August Klughardt at the exhibition opening. David Werner (oboe), Svetla Kambourova (viola) and Sebastian Kennerknecht (piano) will perform Klughardt's "Schilflieder".
All interested parties are cordially invited! Admission is free.
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Sep 14, 2023