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Hilde Neumann (née Rosenfeld) and Otto Kirchheimer Collection

Identifier: AR 25912

Scope and Contents

The Papers of Hilde Neumann (née Rosenfeld) and Otto Kirchheimer contain materials documenting their personal and professional lives. These include Hilde Neumann’s family correspondence, pre- and post-World War II; restitution claims; official documentation from the French police; and news clippings. Also included are Otto Kirchheimer’s official German documents, such as reports from the Nazi secret police and letters to the attorney general, as well as FBI investigation reports; articles; documentation on immigration and restitution claims; and news clippings.


  • 1928-2018
  • Majority of material found within 1928-1967

Language of Materials

The collection is in German and English, with some French and Spanish.

Conditions Governing Access

Open to researchers.

Conditions Governing Use

There may be some restrictions on the use of the collection.

Biographical Note

Hilde Martha Betty Rosenfeld was born on April 13, 1905, in Berlin-Karlshorst, the daughter of the attorney and socialist member of the German parliament Kurt Samuel Rosenfeld, born on February 1, 1877, in Marienwerder, Germany (today: Kwidzyn, Poland) and his wife Alice, née Kristeller. Hilde married Otto Kirchheimer in Berlin-Grunewald on March 31, 1928; their daughter, Hanna, was born in Berlin on December 16, 1930. Hilde and Otto separated in 1936 and divorced on May 8, 1941, in Huamantla, Tlaxcala, Mexico. She then married the physician Rudolf Neumann, and their daughter, Erika, was born in Mexico City on May 21, 1943. The family returned to Germany in 1947. Hilde Neumann worked as a lawyer initially in her father’s praxis in Berlin, then for various international organizations in France and Mexico until her return to German where she was appointed a judge to the Supreme Court of the German Democratic Republic. Hilde Neumann died in Berlin on September 11, 1959.

Otto Kirchheimer was born in Heilbronn, Germany on November 11, 1905. He received his law degree from Friedrich Wilhelm University in Bonn in 1928. In 1938, the Nazis revoked his and his family’s German citizenship. He escaped Nazi Germany in 1934 to Paris and then immigrated to the US in 1937. In 1941 he married his second wife, Anne Rosenthal. In the United States Kirchheimer worked as a research analyst at the Office of Strategic Services (OSS), starting in World War II and continuing to 1952. From 1955 to 1960 he was a member of the Graduate Faculty of the New School for Social Research lecturing on political theory and science. Since 1961, he taught at Columbia University. Otto Kirchheimer died in Alexandria, Maryland on November 22, 1965.


0.25 Linear Feet


The collection focuses on the private and professional lives of the attorneys Hilde Neumann (née Rosenfeld) and her first husband, the political scientist Otto Kirchheimer. It contains personal and official correspondence, articles, restitution claims, clippings (information artifacts), official documents from Germany, and immigration records from the United States.


Arranged into two series by topic and document types.

  • Series I: Hilde Neumann (née Rosenfeld), 1934-1959
  • Series II: Otto Kirchheimer, 1928-1967, 2018

Related Materials

The LBI Archives includes a related collection:

Kurt Rosenfeld Collection (call number: AR 25906).

Processing Information

Materials were rehoused into acid-free box and folders.

Processed by Simona Sivkoff-Livneh
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Leo Baeck Institute Repository

15 West 16th Street
New York NY 10011 United States