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Hans Tramer Collection

Identifier: LBIJER 836

Scope and Content Note

The Hans Tramer Collection consists of 8 boxes and 52 folders.

Series I consists primarily of notebooks containing manuscripts including drafts of various writings and notes, however also notebooks with collections of clippings glued and arranged by Tramer, many times with additional notes.

Subseries 1 contains notebooks primarily from his studies (ca. 1929 to 1931) especially from Tramer's time as a student at the "Juedisch-Theologisches Seminar" in Breslau. It includes notes from lectures on Jewish history, philosophy, and Hebrew grammar by Israel Rabin, Hirsch Jakob Zimmels, Isaac Heinemann, Ernst Kornemann and others, vocabulary books (Hebrew, Latin, and Greek), and a book with translations of Hebrew poetry into German.

Subseries 2 contains manuscripts (three notebooks) consisting of presumably literary drafts by H. Tramer including texts titled "Wir" and "Unser Kind", and a diary (notebook) from Tramer's trip to Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium, and England in 1950 (mostly notes on activities) including glued postcards, clippings, photographs, theater programs etc..

Subseries 3 consists of manuscripts, (mostly handwritten) notes and clippings pertaining to various literary topics. It includes materials about Boris Pasternak e.g. a notebook titled "Pasternaks Doktor Schiwago. Schnee, Blut und Traenen – und das 'Tauwetter' der russischen Literatur" and a manuscript titled "Pasternaks Lara erzaehlt" (typescript, 7 pp.) by H. Tramer, handwritten notes and a manuscript about Karl Wolfskehl (2 notebooks) (circa 1970), notes for a speech on the occasion of Max Brod's 75th birthday (notebook) (1959), a notebook titled "Max Brod als geistige Gestalt" (presumably notes for speech) (1970), and clippings on Brod, materials pertaining to Hermann Broch (especially copies of letters), notebooks containing notes and clippings pertaining to Franz Kafka, Jakob Wassermann, Fritz Heymann ("Der Chevalier von Geldern"), a notebook with notes on Rudolf Borchardt, which also includes a manuscript by H. Tramer titled "Ueber die Verantwortung des Dichters. EinVersuch" [title] (1937), notebooks with collection of clippings compiled by Tramer titled "Juedische Lyrik" (including poems by Arthur Silbergleit, Hilde Marx, Edith L. Meyer, Ilse Blumenthal-Weiss, Berthold Feiwel, Schalom Ben-Chorin, and others), a book with poems by Stefan George containing clippings and notes, and a notebook with clippings pertaining to Saul Tchernichowsky, three notebooks with texts on contemporary literature titled "Gestaltete Gegenwart I and II" and "Tendenzen der modernen Literatur", furthermore, "Ergoetzliche Kabinettstuecke der Weltliteratur" [title] (manuscript, 11 pp.), "Zwei beruehmte deutsch-juedische Verleger" [title] (typescript, 3 pp.) and numerous other notes.

Subseries 4 contains materials about History, Judaism, and Philosophy including a notebook titled "Die Wirkung des Messianismus auf das Geschichtsbewusstsein des Juden" (typescript, 63 pp.) and the draft of a speech titled "Die Aufgaben der Freimaurerei in dieser Zeit" [title] (typescript 9 pp.) (1940) by H. Tramer, materials about Franz Rosenzweig including a manuscript titled "Franz Rosenzweigs Entwicklung und Leben" [title] (typescript, 26+2 pp.) by Hans Tramer, a notebook titled "Juedisches Selbstverstaendnis und juedische Renaissance als Problem des nachemanzipatorischen Judentums", materials (notes and clippings) pertaining to Kabbalah, Martin Buber, Schalom Ben-Chorin, Josef Kastein, notes titled "Der juedische Weg. Zur Systematik juedischer Geschichte" (notebook), "Juedische Gestalten und ihre Zeit" (clippings with notes), and notes presumably for speeches e.g. titled "Ist Europa unser Schicksal? Betrachtungen nach einer Reise" (1955) and "Das europaeische Erbe und Israel" (1960).

Series II contains correspondence by Tramer, primarily in his capacity of first chairman of the Leo Baeck Institute in Jerusalem.

Topics include:

The bulletin of the LBI; the yearbook of the LBI and other publications of the LBI such as a brochure pertaining to Hannah Arendt's book about the Eichmann trial, planned publications about Siegfried Lehmann, Karl Wolfskehl, Max Pinkus, and jubilee publications for Robert Weltsch and Siegfried Moses; the Erasmus prize for Martin Buber; the international book fare in Jerusalem (1963); an exhibition about expressionist literature at the Schillermuseum in Marbach; organizational matters.

Correspondents include:

Avneri, Zvi; Adler-Rudel, Shalom; Berendsohn, Walter A.; Bergmann, Hugo; Brilling, Bernhard; Kreutzberger, Max (LBI New York); Leo Baeck Institute London; Leo Baeck Institute New York; Liebeschuetz, Hans; Moses, Siegfried; Pinkus, Klaus; Schillermuseum Marbach; Simon, Ernst; Spier, Selmar; Tau, Fritz; Tau, Max; Weltsch, Robert; Wilhelm, Kurt; Wormann, Curt.

Series III contains documents pertaining to H. Tramer, including passports (Mandate Palestine) of Tramer and his wife Antonie, Invoices pertaining to book purchases by Tramer, letters to the LBI, the "Irgun Olei Merkaz Europa" and to Antonie Tramer on the occasion of Tramer's death in 1978, and manuscript of others.

Series IV contains loose clippings (from 1931 to 1978) (partly collections) on various topics, however, in particular on (German) literature, music, theater, Israeli politics, and Jewish history, and are taken primarily from German newspapers. Sometimes other materials such as programs, printed invitations are attached. Separately there is a collection of offprints, programs and other printed materials.

Several of the clipping collections contain notes, letters invoices etc. by Tramer. More extensive ones showing no direct connection to the clippings were removed and are now kept in separate folders.


  • undated, 1929-1992
  • Majority of material found within 1929-1979


Language of Materials

This collection is in German, English, Hebrew.

Access Restrictions

Open to researchers.

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

Hans Tramer, rabbi, publisher, and long-time first chairman of the Leo Baeck Institute in Jerusalem, was born in Bunzlau (Silesia – Prussia) in 1905. He studied at the "Jewish Theological Seminary" in Breslau (Juedisch-theologisches Seminar") from 1928 to 1932, and served as rabbi at the liberal synagogue in Berlin from 1932 to 1933. In 1933 he immigrated with his wife Antonie Tramer to Palestine, where he became general secretary of the "Irgun Olei Merkaz Europa" ("Hitachdut Olei Merkaz Europa") and was involved in publishing the "Mitteilungsblatt", the periodical of the organization. In 1956, Hans Tramer became the Institute’s first chairman, a position he held until his death, serving at the same time as the editor of the institute's "Bulletin". Hans Tramer died in Jerusalem in 1978.


8 Boxes


The Hans Tramer Collection consists of 8 boxes and 52 folders.

Related Material

See also LBIJER 1099.


This collection is located at LBI Jerusalem. For information on accessing the collection please visit their website:

Guide to the Hans Tramer Collection, 1929-1992, undated.  LBIJER 836
Processed by LBI Staff
© 2014
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English.

Repository Details

Part of the Leo Baeck Institute Repository

15 West 16th Street
New York NY 10011 United States