German diary archive

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The German diary archive in the old town hall of Emmendingen

The German Diary Archive e. V. ( DTA ) in Emmendingen has been collecting private life testimonies ( diaries , correspondence and memoirs) from the end of the 18th century to the present since 1998 . The archive currently holds over 20,000 testimonies from around 4,000 authors (as of June 2018).

Foundation and organization

The Diary Archive (DTA) was organized as an association in Emmendingen in 1998 . It is financed from the contributions of its members, from grants from the city of Emmendingen and the state of Baden-Württemberg as well as from sponsorship and donations. In addition to a full-time branch manager and a research assistant, more than 80 volunteers take part in the archiving, content indexing and database entry of the life certificates collected.


The concept of the DTA provides for the preservation of everyday history. So it is not the life testimonies of important personalities collected. Rather, the archive stores diaries, correspondence and memoirs of all persons that are sent to it by relatives or the writers themselves.

The German Diary Archive claims to be the first such institution in Germany.

The archive is a "selected location" of the Germany - Land of Ideas initiative . In 2019 it was registered as a "movable cultural monument of special importance" in the monument book of the state of Baden-Württemberg.

Usage and research options

The archive can be used during opening hours. The primary task of the archive is to enable interested scientists and students to research the almost 20,000 diaries, memories and letter collections of over 4,000 authors.

In November 2014 the museum was opened in the German Diary Archive in the old town hall of Emmendingen. It was closed until February 2020 due to renovation work

The homepage of the German Diary Archive offers a limited opportunity for individual research using key words and local thesauri. Since March 2015, more than 15,000 individual documents can be accessed in an online catalog via the archive's homepage.

The DTA and the University of Freiburg have organized a 3-year learning project called "Time travel - everyday life and experience in historical ego documents" for the upper level. A grammar school in Gundelfingen, Denzlingen, Emmendingen and two grammar schools in Freiburg are taking part with financial support of around 50,000 euros from the Robert Bosch Foundation.

Similar facilities

  • Berlin diary and memory archive, founded in 2005 at the Heimatmuseum Treptow.
  • The collection of the writer Walter Kempowski in Haus Kreienhoop, archiving and documentation of life testimonies ("Archive for unpublished autobiographies").

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Peter Wickum: Hold on to what happens . In: The time . No. 14 , 1998 ( Zeit Online [accessed March 1, 2019]).
  2. Heidi Ossenberg: Diary archive now enjoys monument protection. Badische Zeitung, March 22, 2019, accessed on March 22, 2019 .
  3. Facts & Figures - German Diary Archive. Retrieved March 22, 2019 .
  4. ^ Deutsches Tagebucharchiv: Museum, Deutsches Tagebucharchiv. Retrieved November 15, 2019 .
  5. Science: Diary Archive Emmendingen puts 15,000 documents online - Retrieved March 20, 2015 .
  6. What time travel is all about. Retrieved March 20, 2015 .
  7. Memory and diary archive. Retrieved November 15, 2019 .
  8. ^ House Kreienhoop. Refuge, poetry workshop, archive, library and literary stage. Retrieved November 15, 2019 .