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Joseph Eaton (born Josef Wechsler) was an American sociologist at the University of Pittsburgh and a German-Jewish immigrant who arrived in the United States as a child in 1934. The collection primarily comprises correspondence, writings, clippings, ephemera, and photocopied archival materials related to Eaton's genealogical research in the Bavarian localities of Schwabach, Nuremberg, Fürth, and Theilheim (Waigolshausen), including materials pertaining to the history of the Jewish communities in those localities, as well as specifically to Eaton's own immediate family and his ancestors of the Wechsler, Rosenbaum, and Goldschmidt families. Included are materials related to Eaton's travels to those localities in the context of programs hosting former Jewish residents and commemorating the Holocaust and the German-Jewish communities that were destroyed. A small portion of the collection pertains to Eaton's scholarly interest in the experiences of Jewish communists in East German society, including transcripts and/or audio files of two interviews he conducted with Hermann Axen, a Jewish concentration camp survivor who from the 1970s until 1989 was a member of the Politburo of the ruling Socialist Unity Party.