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Leon Zeitlin Collection

Identifier: AR 4128

Scope and Contents

This bulk of this collection consists of correspondence and manuscripts. Although some of the correspondence is personal in nature, much of it concerns Zeitlin's work as an economic writer and theorist and his advocacy for various human rights causes. Max Horkheimer and Nahum Goldmann are among the many notable correspondence. Other parts of the correspondence concern specific book projects, especially for his Life's value in cash .

Manuscripts form the second large group of materials. While the bulk of the materials in this group are short essays, typed with handwritten corrections, on economic affairs, there are also a few autobiographical writings and some historical work, notably on Bismarck. The economic manuscripts concern topics such as the world economy and world currency, the Treaty of Rome, and social and economic justice. The remaining materials include a program for Zeitlin's 85th birthday and a bulletin and membership list for the German Jewish university fraternity alumnus organization to which he belonged, the Burschenbunds-Convent.


  • 1930-1967


Language of Materials

The collection is in English and German.

Access Restrictions

Open to researchers.

Access Information

Collection is digitized. Follow the links in the Container List to access the digitized materials.

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.

Use Restrictions

There may be some restrictions on the use of the collection. For more information, contact:

Leo Baeck Institute, Center for Jewish History, 15 West 16th Street, New York, NY, 10011


Biographical Note

Leon Zeitlin was born in Memel, East Prussia (today Klaipėda, Lithuania), in 1876. He obtained a doctorate in economics and served on the Reich Economic Council (Reichswirtschaftsrat) from 1920-1932. Later, from 1928-1932, he also held office as a liberal-democratic representative on the Prussian Diet (Preussischer Landtag). When the National Socialists took hold of the German government, he was forced to give up his post and emigrated to London, England. In exile he took up advocacy for several human rights causes, including improved Jewish-Christian relations, and wrote extensively for several economics journals. In 1962 he published the book Life's value in cash. He died in London in 1967.


0.5 Linear Feet


This collection contains the economist Leon Zeitlin's personal and professional correspondence, mostly from the 1950s and 1960s, as well as a number of economic and autobiographical manuscripts.

Other Finding Aid

The collection's original, German-language inventory is available in folder 1.

Separated Material

Newspaper clippings, scholarly articles, conference proceedings, and several other published or copyrighted items have been removed to the Leon Zeitlin Clippings Collection, AR 4128 C.

Two lectures by Joachim Tiburtius (1963 and 1965) and a lecture by Heinz Kloppenburg (1959) published by the Gesellschaft für christlich jüdische Zusammenarbeit, three issues of Common Ground (1955, 1966), an issue of Bulletin on German questions (1966), and an issue of Die Mahnung (1965) have been removed to the LBI Library Collection.

Processing History

Collection was inventoried by Turnheim in 1974 and re-processed for digitization by Timothy Ryan Mendenhall 2011.

Leon Zeitlin Collection, 1930-1967   AR 4128
Processed by LBI Staff and Timothy Ryan Mendenhall
© 2011
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Description is in English.

Revision Statements

  • September 28, 2011 : Links to digital objects added in Container List.

Repository Details

Part of the Leo Baeck Institute Repository

15 West 16th Street
New York NY 10011 United States