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Acquisition Logs of the Museum Europäischer Kulturen

The collection of the MEK (Museum Europäischer Kulturen) is made up of three parts, which were merged in the 1990s: the collection of the East Berlin Museum für Volkskunde, the collection of the West Berlin Museum für Deutsche Volkskunde (1992) and the “European Department” of the Museum für Völkerkunde (1999).

Since its founding in 1889, the collection originally known as the folklore collection had been structured according to “cultural landscapes” – reflective of the cultural-geographical organisation of the Museum für Völkerkunde – and was catalogued accordingly. Once the collection was made into an independent public museum in 1935, the significance of these classificatory parameters dwindled, though they were retained in the ethnological collections. The newly introduced inventory system of the Museum für Deutsche Volkskunde classified primarily according to materials and typologies (known as “subject groups”) and was thus designed to facilitate cultural comparison. This system accorded each object a number within its subject group, as well as an inventory number. Since then, objects have been assigned to subject groups that above all reflect their context of use. The catalogue currently comprises 74 subject groups along with numerous subgroups and can be expanded when needed.

The division of Germany and the parallel existence of ethnological museums in the East and the West resulted in two different systems of cataloguing. The Museum für Volkskunde on the Museumsinsel, where the index cards of the pre-1945 holdings remained, continued to catalogue according to subject groups, although without consecutive object numbers. The Museum für Deutsche Volkskunde in Dahlem inventoried with consecutive object numbers, basing their system – in the absence of the old index cards – on the objects in their collection. Meaning that they restarted their catalogue at the number “1”. For clear identification, the former location was placed in front of each shelf mark with the merger in 1992 – “I” for (Museums-)Insel, “D” for Dahlem, and “A” for Altbestand (old holdings, or the pre-1945 inventory).

Since its foundation in 1935, the “European Department” – previously named the “Eurasian Department” – of the Museum für Völkerkunde divided its holdings according to so-called cultural landscapes or “ethnic groups”.  The department was labelled with the Roman numeral “II”. Unlike the Museum für Volkskunde and the Museum für Deutsche Volkskunde, the Museum für Völkerkunde retained this system. As such, the collection continues to be roughly divided into four “cultural landscapes”. Within these holdings, the objects are assigned to ethnic and national groups. Thus, the prefix “A” refers to Northern/Western Europe. The markers II B, II C and II D refer to Eastern and South-Eastern Europe; the original classification was “Slavs, Balkan peoples, Balts and Magyars” (II B), “Turkic peoples and European Finns” (II C) and “the Caucasus” (II D). A separate collection group (II E) comprises the paintings and models of the painter and ethnographer Wilhelm Kiesewetter (1811–1865). In addition, there are the photographic collections of the “European Department”, which are filed under VIII. When the “European Department” was merged with the ethnological collections in 1999, it retained its system, but new objects are not incorporated into it.

New additions to the collection, initially into that of the reunited ethnological museums and later the collection of the MEK, have been labelled with the letter “N” since 1992. Cataloguing continues to be organised into subject groups.

The following information is so far only available in German. A translation into English is in progress.

Zugangsbuch Inv. 1890-1903 (PDF, 62 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1890-1903 (Lfd.-Nr. I k 15-VI k 504)

Inventar-Verzeichnis 1896-1897 (PDF, 178 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1896-1897 (Lfd.-Nr. Im 15-Vf 29)

Inventar 1904-1965 (PDF, 457 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1904-1965 (Lfd.-Nr. 1904/1 – 1965/464)

Inventarband Nr. 2 (PDF, 151 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1966-1967 (Lfd.-Nr. 1966/1 – 1967/373)

Inventarband Nr. 3 (PDF, 137 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1967-1968 (Lfd.-Nr. 1967/374 – 1968/554)

Inventarband Nr. 4 (PDF, 149 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1969-1972 (Lfd.-Nr. 1969/1 – 1972/94)

Inventarband Nr. 5 (PDF, 153 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1972-1978 (Lfd.-Nr. 1972/95 – 1978/252)

Inventarband Nr. 6 (PDF, 177 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1978-1986 (Lfd.-Nr. 1978/253 – 1986/787)

Inventarband Nr. 7 (PDF, 92 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1987-1990 (Lfd.-Nr. 1987/1 – 1990/308)

Inventarband Nr. 8 (PDF, 73 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1990-1991 (Lfd.-Nr. 1990/309 – 1991/731)

Erwerbungsbuch 1949-1961 (PDF, 61 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1949-1961 (Lfd.-Nr. 1949/1 – 1961/404)

Erwerbungsbuch 1962-1971 (PDF, 247 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1962-1971 (Lfd.-Nr. 1962/1 – 1971/745)

Erwerbungsbuch 1972-1979 (PDF, 369 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1972-1979 (Lfd.-Nr. 1972/1 – 1979/507)

Erwerbungsbuch 1980-1984 (PDF, 286 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1980-1984 (Lfd.-Nr. 1980/1 – 1984/1046)

Erwerbungsbuch 1985-1991 (PDF, 207 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1985-1991 (Lfd.-Nr. 1985/1 – 1991/730)

Erwerbungsbuch 1992-1997 (PDF, 222 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1992-1997 (Lfd.-Nr. 1992/1 – 1997/684)

Erwerbungsbuch 1998-2004 (PDF, 134 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1998-2004 (Lfd.-Nr. 1998/1 – 2004/20)

II. Europa Inventar 1876-1933 (PDF, 91 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1876-1933 (Lfd.-Nr. 1-1980)

Europa Inventar 1908 [= Abschrift v. II. Europa Inventar 1876-1933] (PDF, 95 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1876-1923 (Lfd.-Nr. 1-1971)

Europa Inventar 1908-1999 (PDF, 67 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1908-1999 (Lfd.-Nr. 1908/21–1999/6)

Katalogbuch II A (1. Teil) (PDF, 162 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1898-1976 (Lfd.-Nr. II A 1-II A 4350)

Katalogbuch II A (2. Teil) West-, Süd-, Nordeuropa (PDF, 129 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1977-1992 (Lfd.-Nr. II A 4351-II A 8170)

Katalogbuch II A (3. Teil) West-, Süd-, Nordeuropa (PDF, 14 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1997-1998 (Lfd.-Nr. II A 8171-II A 8544)

Katalogbuch II B (1. Teil) Ost-, Südosteuropa (PDF, 147 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1885-1956 (Lfd.-Nr. II B 1-II B 4259)

Katalogbuch II B (2. Teil) Ost-, Südosteuropa (PDF, 161 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1935-1980 (Lfd.-Nr. II B 4260- IIB 8440)

Katalogbuch II B (3. Teil) Ost-, Südosteuropa (PDF, 62 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1979-1999 (Lfd.-Nr. II B 8440-II B 10235)

Katalogbuch II C Turkvölker, europ. Finnen (PDF, 114 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1882-1999 (Lfd.-Nr. II C 1-II C 2808)

Katalogbuch II D Juden, Kaukasus (PDF, 25 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1882-1988 (Lfd.-Nr. II D 1-II D 520)

Katalogbuch II E Kiesewetter (PDF, 10 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1868-1868 (Lfd.-Nr. II E 1-II E 173)

Katalogbuch II X Interim (PDF, 45 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1883-1999 (Lfd.-Nr. II X 1-II X 1353)

Katalogbuch VIII Eu (1. Teil) Fotos (PDF, 11 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1934-1955 (Lfd.-Nr. VIII EU 1-VIII EU 4366)

Katalogbuch VIII Eu (2. Teil) Fotos (PDF, 125 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1950-1980 (Lfd.-Nr. VIII EU 4367-VIII EU 8326)

Katalogbuch VIII Eu (3. Teil) Fotos (PDF, 148 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1950-1980 (Lfd.-Nr. VIII EU 8327-VIII EU 12726)

Katalogbuch VIII Eu (4. Teil) Fotos (PDF, 17 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1950-1980 (Lfd.-Nr. VIII EU 12727-VIII EU 17151)

Katalogbuch VIII Eu (5. Teil) Fotos (PDF, 209 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1950-1980 (Lfd.-Nr. VIII EU 17152-VIII EU 21551)

Katalogbuch VIII Eu (6. Teil) Fotos (PDF, 131 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1950-1980 (Lfd.-Nr. VIII EU 21552-VIII EU 25970)

Katalogbuch VIII Eu (7. Teil) Fotos (PDF, 133 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1950-1998 (Lfd.-Nr. VIII EU 25971-VIII EU 30261)

Katalogbuch VIII D Diapositive (PDF, 119 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1929-1929 (Lfd.-Nr. VIII EU 1-VIII EU 116)

Katalogbuch II N Diapositive Eu.D. 1-2100 Negative (1. Teil) Eu.N. 1-2060 (PDF, 112 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1938-1988 (Lfd.-Nr. VIII EU 1-VIII EU 2060)

Katalogbuch II N (2. Teil) Negative (PDF, 122 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1970-1980 (Lfd.-Nr. VIII EU 2061-VIII EU 2410)

Fotoarchiv (Berlin, Ost) (PDF, 16 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1984-1984 (Lfd.-Nr. 1984/1 – 1984/335)

Bibliotheksbestand (PDF, 48 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1900-1939 (Lfd.-Nr. 1-678)

Bibliotheksbestand (PDF, 79 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1900-1935 (Lfd.-Nr. 1-1118)

Bibliotheksbestand (PDF, 41 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1931-1935 (Lfd.-Nr. 1119-1503)

Bibliotheksbestand (PDF, 103 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1931-1938 (Lfd.-Nr. 1504-2533)

Bibliotheksbestand (PDF, 103 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1938-1944 (Lfd.-Nr. 2534-4506)

Bibliotheksbestand (PDF, 17 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1938-1944 (Lfd.-Nr. 4507-4678)

Bibliotheksbestand (PDF, 52 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1959-1963 (Lfd.-Nr. 1959/1 – 1963/309)

Bibliotheksbestand (PDF, 209 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1964-1983 (Lfd.-Nr. 1964/1 – 1983/774)

Bibliotheksbestand (PDF, 94 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1964-1983 (Lfd.-Nr. 1983/775 – 1989/791)

Fremdvermögen (Restitution) (PDF, 15 MB)
Nachweiszeitraum der Zugänge 1950-2012 (Lfd.-Nr. 1-319)

The acquisition logs of the Museum Europäischer Kulturen have been sifted, digitized and made available online within the framework of the project “Provenance and Collections: Publishing the Acquisition and Accession Logs of the Staatliche Museen zu Berlin Online”.

This project was initiated and funded by the Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media.