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Hirschland Bank and Family Collection

Identifier: AR 25638

Scope and Content Note

The Hirschland Family and Bank Collection documents both the lives of members of the larger Hirschland and related families as well as the Simon Hirschland bank and its successor corporations. Family documentation pertains to members of the Grünebaum, Hirschland, Neumann and other families. The collection includes prolific correspondence, banking files and financial records, family papers, official documents, photographs and photo albums, contracts, and other papers.

Series I contains the papers of family members. Much of the family correspondence also relates to the Hirschland bank as several of the family members were employed there. Another frequent topic of the collection's correspondence is emigration, including immigration assistance by family members for others, and family news. The bulk of the family members in the collection are Erich and Gabrielle (née Neumann) Grunebaum, whose papers comprise the first subseries of Series I, but many other family members of the Grünebaum, Hirschland and Neumann families are also represented in Series I. Among the Hirschland family papers here are some papers of Georg Hirschland, a prominent member of the Jewish Community in Essen. Personal family papers also include poetry, wedding memorabilia and photographs, but there is also a large amount of official documents, especially citizenship and identification papers likely used in the emigration of family members from Germany to other countries such as the United States and England. Information on family members' investments, stocks, and other property is also present.

Records relating to the Hirschland family bank and its successor corporations and banks in which family members were partners comprise the second series of the collection. Although many of the papers in this series pertain to Bankhaus Burkhardt & Co., Hirschland bank successor or affiliated corporations New York Hanseatic Corporation, K.L. & Co., and Amsterdamse Crediet Maatschapij are also prominent among the financial institutions documented here. These records provide extensive information on the securities or investments of the various corporations and banks. In addition to considerable correspondence, the records also consist of many partnership contracts or agreements in this series that pertain to these institutions.


  • Creation: 1819-1999
  • Creation: Majority of material found within 1925-1970

Language of Materials

The collection is in German, English and Dutch.

Access Restrictions

Open to researchers.

Access Information

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

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


Historical Note

On September 1, 1841 Simon Hirschland founded a banking and commercial firm in Essen, Germany. In its early years the firm concentrated on money exchange, bank discount, investment management, and loans. In the 1840s it had business relationships with such industrialist families as Krupp, Stinnes and Dinnendahl. In 1874 Simon Hirschland's son Isaak Hirschland became a partner in the firm. During his years in the firm it was expanded to include smaller craftsmen, aiding in the development of Essen as a center of industry. For his work Isaak Hirschland received the title of Kommerzienrat and was awarded by being named a member of the Roter Adler (Order of the Red Eagle). He was also head of the Jewish Community of Essen for 36 years, with members of the Hirschland family having been involved in civil and philanthropic work.

Following the death of Isaak Hirschland on April 3, 1912 his sons Kurt Martin Hirschland and Georg Simon Hirschland took over the family banking firm. They fostered the connections of the firm in the industries and associations of the Rhine-Westfalen area, as well as developed its international connections. During the occupation of the Rhineland following World War I, the firm opened a branch in Hamburg.

In 1923 Erich Otto Grünebaum, the son of Kurt and Georg Hirschland's sister Agathe and her husband Ernst Grünebaum, joined the Simon Hirschland bank, first working as a foreign exchange clerk, and eventually becoming head of the foreign exchange department. In 1933 he married Gabrielle Neumann, daughter of Emil and Ella Neumann. Three years later Erich Grünebaum was made a partner of the Simon Hirschland firm. In 1938 the Simon Hirschland bank was Aryanized, and renamed Burkhardt & Co. By 1938 most members of the family had left Germany, with many of them immigrating to England and the United States. After a short stay in Sweden, Erich Grünebaum lived in London and then Canada before eventually settling with his family in Westchester County, New York where his brother already resided. After immigration to the United States the family used the surname Grunebaum; this spelling is used in this finding aid. Erich and Gabrielle Grunebaum, along with other Hirschland family members, assisted in providing financial support for emigration from Germany for many other family members, friends and former Hirschland bank employees. The branch of the family banking firm that Erich Grünebaum helped to establish in New York was known as the New York Hanseatic Corporation.


5.5 Linear Feet


The Hirschland Bank and Family Collection contains the family papers and banking records of the Hirschland banking firm established by Simon Hirschland in Essen. Family papers pertain to members of the Hirschland, Grünebaum, Neumann and other families, with an emphasis on family members' emigration and role in the family firm. Banking records focus on the history of the family firm from the 1930s through the 1960s, including records of successor financial firms. The collection includes prolific correspondence, banking files and financial records, family papers, official documents, photographs and photo albums, contracts, and other papers.

Related Material

See also the Hirschland Bank Collection, AR 25342.

Separated Material

A few books and publications were removed from this collection to the LBI Library. Photocopies of the works' titles and bibliographic information were retained in the collection where the books were originally located.

Processing Information

When processing of the archival collection began, some original order was observed among portions of the collection (alphabetical correspondence files and sequences of "transfile" folders pertaining to banking and to the Jewish Community of Essen). This original order was retained and these groups of folders moved to the applicable series based on their contents. The remainder of the files were organized into series by content as well.

Guide to the Papers of the Hirschland Bank and Family 1819-1999 AR 25638
Processed by Dianne Ritchey
© 2015
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Description is in English.
Edition statement
This version was derived from Hirschland_Bank_and_Family.xml

Revision Statements

  • March 2017:: dao links added.

Repository Details

Part of the Leo Baeck Institute Repository

15 West 16th Street
New York NY 10011 United States