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Anneliese Riess Collection

Identifier: AR 10019

Scope and Content Note

The bulk of the collection contains personal correspondence and family papers. Many of these papers document the emigration efforts of Anneliese Riess and her family. Some of the papers concern Elsa Riess, the sister of Anneliese, who had gone missing for several months and was ultimately located in a concentration camp. There are also family portraits, postcard albums and poetry albums.


  • Creation: 1882-2001
  • Creation: Majority of material found in 1933-1948


Language of Materials

The collection is in German, English, Italian and French.

Access Restrictions

Open to researchers.

Access Information

Readers may access the collection by visiting the Lillian Goldman Reading Room at the Center for Jewish History. We recommend reserving the collection in advance; please visit the LBI Online Catalog and click on the "Request" button.

Biographical Note

Anneliese Riess was born in Hamburg, Germany in 1910 to Albert Reiss and Philippine Riess née Stargardt. Anneliese Riess began her university studies in Berlin and completed them in Rome. After earning a doctorate in archeology from Deutsches Archäologisches Institut in 1936, Riess struggled to find employment of any kind. In 1937, she entered a child nursing program at École des Amies de L’Enfance in Geneva, Switzerland. After earning her certificate, Riess resided in Turin, Italy until her visa was revoked. She immigrated to the United States in 1939 and settled in New York City.

Albert Riess was born in 1879 in Gnoien, Mecklenberg-Vorpommern and was educated in Seesan am Harz, Niedersachsen. In 1907, Albert married Philippine Stargardt in Berlin and the couple later raised three children: Elsa, Hans and Anneliese. While his young family lived in Hamburg, Albert served in the German army during World War I on the Eastern front in Poland, Latvia, and the Ukraine. After the war, Albert moved his family to Berlin where he lived until he immigrated to the United States in 1938. He died ten years later in New York City.


2 Linear Feet


This collection documents the life of Anneliese Riess and her family. The bulk of the collection contains correspondence that reflects the impact of fascism and anti-Semitic policies on her personal life and on her immediate family.

Digitization Note

This collection was digitized in its entirety. Access to folders 40 and 45 is restricted due to privacy concerns. Researchers with questions regarding suppressed materials may contact the LBI Archivist at

Related Material

The Leo Baeck Institute Library holds Exil wird Heimat: Erinnerungen (call number DS 135 G5), the published autobiography of Anneliese Riess.

A manuscript by Anneliese Riess, “Bertha Knispel”, relates the story of the housekeeper of the Riess family during the 1920’s. The manuscript is housed in LBI’s Manuscript Collection (MS 306). A microfilm version is also available (MSF 23) as well as a digitized version that is available online.

Anneliese Riess’ memoir, “Back to school – A life of our time”, is part of the LBI Memoir Collection (ME 941). A microfilm version exists (MM II 19) as well as a digitized version that is accessible online.

The Leo Baeck Institute Archive holds the Paula Elkisch Collection (AR 25231).

Separated Material

Family portraits were moved to the LBI Photograph Collection.

One embroidered ring with multicolored stones and one iron World War I service ring have been removed to the LBI Art and Objects Collection.

Processing Information

Correspondence had been arranged chronologically prior to processing.

Guide to the Anneliese Riess Collection 1882-2001 (bulk 1933) AR 10019
Processed by Angela Lawrence
© 2011
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Description is in English.
Described, encoded, and digitized as part of the CJH Holocaust Resource Initiative, made possible by the Conference on Jewish Material Claims against Germany.

Revision Statements

  • 2014: dao links and digitization information added by Leanora Lange.
  • November 2015: dao links for box 2 and digitization note updated by Leanora Lange.

Repository Details

Part of the Leo Baeck Institute Repository

15 West 16th Street
New York NY 10011 United States