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Stern and Fantl Families Collection

Identifier: AR 6645

Scope and Content Note

This collection documents the Stern and Fantl families of Vienna, Austria from the mid-nineteenth century through 1980. The bulk of the materials stem from 1870-1950 and relate to Erwin Stern, his wife Margarete Stern née Fantl, and his father Edmund Stern.

The materials related to Erwin Stern include his vital records, immigration and naturalization records, and education records. Also included are a few vital documents and pieces of official correspondence regarding his siblings Ella, Isa, and William. His personal account of imprisonment at Dachau is also included.

Materials in the folder for Margarete Stern née Fantl include personal correspondence, her vital records, education records from a business school for girls that she attended in Sarajevo, and immigration and naturalization records. Also included are a few vital documents for her parents, Alois and Bertha Fantl, as well as documents showing the efforts of Margarete and Erwin Stern to secure passage to the United States for Margarete’s parents.

Materials related to Edmund Stern include personal correspondence, contracts of sale, vital records, notes, receipts, and court documents from an 1873 case brought by a member of the Stern family, Betti Stern, against Joachim Schwarz regarding a debt. Several of these documents have deteriorated over time and some have lost content. The oversized materials include education records for Edmund Stern and two contracts of sale regarding synagogues.


  • 1830-1980
  • Majority of material found within 1870-1950

Language of Materials

The collection is in English, German, Yiddish, Hebrew, and Czech.

Access Restrictions

This collection is open to researchers.

Access Information

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

Biographical Note

Edmund Stern married Bertha née Plaschkes, the daughter of a wholesale dealer Leopold Plaschkes and his wife Minnie née Karpeles. Edmund and Bertha Stern had five children: Cecilia, Ella, Wilhelm, Isa, and Erwin.

Erwin Stern was born November 24, 1901 in Bistritz, Bohemia (today Bystřice in the Czech Republic). He worked as an accountant for Shell-Floridsdorfer Mineralöl Fabrik in Vienna, Austria from 1925-1938. He married Margarete Fantl in Vienna in 1930. Margarete was born on January 9, 1903 in Vienna, Austria to the book and antiques dealer Alois Fantl and his wife Bertha née Pokorny. Margarete studied business at a girls' school in Sarajevo and later worked in her father’s business in Vienna.

Erwin Stern was taken prisoner on November 10, 1938, Kristallnacht, and held at Dachau. He was released in December of 1938. Shortly thereafter, he and Margarete immigrated to the United States, where they both became naturalized citizens in 1945 and eventually settled in Chicago, Illinois.

Alois Fantl (Margarete née Fantl's father) and Bertha Stern née Plaschkes (Erwin Stern's mother) were both deported to Theresienstadt and perished at Auschwitz.


0.25 Linear Feet


This collection documents the Stern and Fantl families of Vienna, Austria from the mid-nineteenth century through 1980. Materials include personal correspondence, vital records (birth and marriage certificates), immigration and naturalization records, education records, passports, legal papers, contracts of sale for family property, photographs, poems, and Erwin Stern’s personal account of imprisonment in Dachau.


The collection is arranged alphabetically. Where more than one folder pertains to the same individual, these are ordered chronologically.

Related Material

The LBI Archives holds the Stern and Fantl family photo album. A digitized version of the album can be viewed online.

Separated Material

The Stern and Fantl family photo album and family photographs were removed to the LBI Photograph Collection.

Processing Information

Duplicates were removed and folded materials were flattened. Materials were rehoused into an acid-free archival box. Photographs were placed in archival envelopes. Very fragile, torn materials were placed in Mylar sleeves.

Guide to the Stern and Fantl Families Collection 1830-1980 (bulk 1870-1950) AR 6645
Processed by Leanora Lange
© 2013
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Description is in English.
Made possible by the Cataloging Hidden Special Collections and Archives Grant from the Council on Library and Information Resources through The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to support "Illuminating Hidden Collections at the Center for Jewish History."

Revision Statements

  • April 08, 2015 : dao links added by Emily Andresini.

Repository Details

Part of the Leo Baeck Institute Repository

15 West 16th Street
New York NY 10011 United States