Guide to the Papers of Johanna Meyer-Lövinson (1874-1958)
1868-1989

AR 299 / MF 965

Processed by LBI Staff and Dianne Ritchey Oummia

Leo Baeck Institute

Center for Jewish History

15 West 16th Street

New York, N.Y. 10011

Phone: (212) 744-6400

Fax: (212) 988-1305

Email: http://www.lbi.org/ask

URL: http://www.lbi.org

© 2005 Leo Baeck Institute. All rights reserved.
Center for Jewish History, Publisher.
Machine-readable finding aid was created by Dianne Ritchey Oummia as MS Word file in March 2005. Electronic finding aid was converted to EAD 2002 by Dianne Ritchey Oummia in March 2005. Description is in English.
April 2009: Microfilm inventory added. July 2010: Links to digital objects added.

Descriptive summary

Creator: Meyer-Lövinson, Johanna
Title: Johanna Meyer-Lövinson Collection
Dates:1868-1989
Dates:bulk 1896-1949
Abstract: This collection documents the life and professional interests of Johanna Meyer-Lövinson. She was most well-known for her work as a reciting artist () and radio speaker in 1920s and early 1930s Berlin. In addition to her artistic activities, she was also involved in teaching. Her collection is composed of papers concerning her personal life such as memoirs, momentos, and a diary as well as her own writings and numerous notes. In addition, it holds correspondence and reference files on authors whose writings she featured in her own work. The collection also contains papers of her family, a few photos, and a film reel.
Languages: The collection is in German, English, and Italian.
Quantity: 4 linear feet
Accession number: AR 299
Repository: Leo Baeck Institute
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Biographical note

Johanna Lövinson was born in Berlin on January 13, 1874, the youngest child of the businessman Siegfried Lövinson and his wife Rosalie nee Hirschberg. She had six siblings that lived to adulthood: Martin, Emil, Henriette, Hermann, Feodora, and Oskar.

When she was 17, Johanna Lövinson entered a teachers' seminary. At 19 she moved to Italy to work as a governess. Upon her return to Berlin she began taking dramatic lessons, and studied with the actor Max Pohl. Johanna Lövinson then began taking voice and breathing lessons and studied German literature, and found positions in finishing schools teaching students correct diction and literature. Occasionally she taught German to foreigners, directed amateur theater productions, and formed reading circles to discuss literature. In 1896, Johanna Lövinson gave her first public performance, a charity event for needy children. She became involved in performing in similar events for various organizations, something she would continue to do for more than thirty years.

In 1901 Johanna Lövinson married the businessman Eugen Meyer, twelve years her elder. Their first child, Hildegard, was born the next year, but died soon after birth from influenza. Their son Paul was born in 1904; daughter Leonore arrived in 1911. Not long after the birth of Paul, Eugen Meyer's business failed, and Johanna Meyer once more began to teach at finishing schools and gave lessons in voice projection, as well as offering lectures on Jewish topics. In addition, she gave readings of children's stories, sometimes in costume, in rented halls. This led to doing readings of literature for more organizations and events. Some readings were also occasionally accompanied by musical performance. Through her literary readings she became connected with well-known writers of the time such as Georg Hermann, Ernst Toller, and Stefan Zweig. This work proved to be her niche, and she became a successful and prolific reciting artist (Rezitatorin), sometimes traveling to other cities to perform. She brought the authors of works with her on occasion to her reading circles, and gave book reviews.

In fall 1923 the first radio station was opened in Berlin, and in 1924 Johanna Meyer found a position at the station reading children's stories and literature, as well as giving lectures on women's issues. Through the radio her fame as a speaker spread, and she was often requested at cultural events in various cities. Once the Nazis came to power in 1933 she lost her position at the radio station, but continued to do dramatic readings and lectures for the Jüdischer Kulturbund.

By 1938, both of Johanna Meyer's children had immigrated to the United States and were living in Chicago. They applied for a visa for her and she left Germany. She settled in an apartment her children provided for her in Chicago, joining her daughter Leonore a year later in Reading, Pennsylvania, where Leonore worked in a kindergarten. There Johanna Meyer began studying English and taking Americanization classes. In 1943 she and her daughter moved to Philadelphia.

In 1945 World War II ended, and Johanna Mayer learned that most of her remaining family in Europe, with whom she had lost contact, had not survived the war, including two of her brothers and their family members. Only one niece and one nephew were left.

In 1946 Johanna Meyer began to work as a model for students at several art schools in Philadelphia. This position usually required her to dress in costume, and to project her personality, a skill she already had from her years as a literary reader. She also began to teach German at the Junto school, which she would continue to do until 1956, at the age of 82.

Johanna Meyer persisted in participating in various endeavors in her later years as well. She was featured in a short educational film on mental health produced by the Pennsylvania Department of Welfare in 1950, where she played the mother of a patient. Most notably, she also continued to do some work for German-language radio stations in the United States. While living in Chicago and Philadelphia she participated in radio programs sponsored by the International Institute to assist new immigrants in becoming familiar with American customs. In 1949 she participated in a commemoration of Goethe's 200th birthday for the newly created radio station WFLN of Philadelphia.

By the spring of 1956 Johanna Meyer had resigned from her work as an art model. Shortly thereafter she was taken to the hospital and had to give up teaching. Johanna Meyer died on April 29, 1957.

Source:
Meyer, Leonore. Velvet and Steel: the Life of Johanna Meyer. Upper Darby, Pennsylvania: Precision Offset Printing, Inc., 1989.

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Scope and content note

This collection depicts the life and professional development of Johanna Meyer-Lövinson. It also contains some material on the life of members of the Lövinson family in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.

Much of this collection is made up of documents concerning Johanna Meyer's professional work. During her life she worked as a teacher, lecturer, reciting artist (Rezitatorin), radio broadcaster, and art model. Most documents concerning these occupations will be found in the largest series of the collection, Series III. This series includes such items as reviews of her performances, both in person and on the radio, and programs announcing the performances. There are also notes used in lectures, orations, classes, and radio programs. Many of her lectures centered on German literature. Other topics she discussed were women and the raising of children, life as a new immigrant to America, and Jewish themes. Files of correspondence and notes on individuals, especially contemporary artists whose work she featured in lectures, radio programs, and at readings, will also be found here.

Personal documents belonging to Johanna Meyer will be found in Series I. Included here are several items with information on events in her early life, such as trips to Austria and Italy. This series also features her memoirs and greetings on reaching memorable birthdays, as well as a few birthdays.

Series II holds papers of members of the Lövinson family and other families related to them. Many of the papers here belonged to Johanna Meyer's siblings and parents, as well as more extended relatives. Although some correspondence is located here, it also contains personal documents and published works. Documents and published items belonging to Johanna Meyer's older brother Hermann (Ermanno) Lövinson are the most prominent in this series. Noteworthy documents in Series II also consist of a royal proclamation awarding the Red Cross Medallion to Henriette Lövinson in recognition of her charitable work and reports on emigration to China by Käthe Lövinson.

This collection may be particularly useful in giving a glimpse of life in early twentieth century Germany, especially of literary interests and Jewish family life in this period. One area not well documented in this collection is Johanna Meyer's emigration experience before arriving in the United States.

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Arrangement

The collection is arranged in the following four series as follows:

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Access and Use

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

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Access points

Click on a subject to search that term in the Center's catalog. Return to the Top of Page

Related material

Researchers interested in the life of Johanna Meyer-Lövinson should be aware that the LBI Library has a copy of her biography by Leonore Meyer Velvet and Steel: the Life of Johanna Meyer .

Several archival collections and memoirs held by the LBI also relate to Johanna Meyer:

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Separated material

Photographs have been removed to the Photograph Collection. A box of medals belonging to Henriette May was removed to the Art Collection.

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Microfilm

This collection is on twelve reels of microfilm (MF 965):

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Preferred citation

Published citations should take the following form:

Identification of item, date (if known); Johanna Meyer-Lövinson Collection; AR 299; box number; folder number; Leo Baeck Institute.

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Processing information

The collection was reprocessed in March 2005 by Dianne Ritchey Oummia. Addenda and unprocessed materials were added to the collection. Arrangement was applied to the collection with the first three series based on the arrangement of an older paper-based inventory. Description was added and basic preservation procedures were performed.

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Container list

The following section contains a detailed listing of the materials in the collection.

 

Series I: Personal, 1893-1954

This series is in German.
0.25 linear foot
Arrangement:

Alphabetical.

Scope and Content:

Series I holds the personal documents of Johanna Meyer. Included in this series are such items as materials pertaining to trips to Austria and Italy, a few photos, congratulations and greetings on various birthdays, and copies of her memoirs.

This series holds several items pertaining to Johanna Meyer's travels. Documents relating to Johanna Meyer's Austrian trip include a diary with detailed descriptions of her experiences in Vienna and a photocopy of a letter from Stefan Zweig. In addition, there is also an embroidered cloth probably made by Johanna Meyer. Also present in this series is a book holding artfully arranged pressed flowers, which originated from many places in Europe including Italy, Hungary, and Germany. Many of the pressed flowers and leaves came from plants in cemeteries.

Photos in this series include portraits of family members. The photo album holds photographs of places where Johanna Meyer resided, as well as of her brother Hermann and teacher Max Pohl. There are also some family group photographs in the album.

Many folders in this series hold items relating to Johanna Meyer's birthdays. Among the items relating to her fiftieth birthday are not only cards and congratulations, but also poetry and a play written for her, as well as a "thank you" poem written by Johanna Meyer in response to the celebration. Included among the other birthday items are letters and congratulations not only from family members and friends, but also from various organizations with whom Johanna Meyer was acquainted. Some newspaper clippings of published birthday wishes and biographical information will also be found in this series.

Finally, this series also contains a copy of Johanna Meyer's handwritten memoirs. The memoirs only describe Johanna Meyer's life from her childhood until she was married, and researchers should note that they were written down in 1943, not at the time of her marriage. Users should also be aware that the folder "Emigration from Germany" holds a clipping pertaining to Johanna Meyer's emigration to Chicago in 1938, but does not include extensive materials on this event.

BoxFolderTitleDate
11Austria Trip – Correspondence and notes1925
12Austria Trip – Diary1925
13Austria Trip - Embroidered cloth1925
14 Eightieth Birthday1954
BoxFolderTitleDate
1 5Emigration from Germany1938
BoxFolderTitleDate
16Fiftieth Birthday 1923-1924
17 Italy Trip - Travel Momentos 1893-1894
18Memoirs - Childhood through Marriage1943
  Part 1 
  Part 2 
BoxFolderTitleDate
1 9Photos undated
BoxFolderTitleDate
110 Photo Albumundated, 1903-1904
BoxFolderTitleDate
1 11Sixtieth Birthday1934
BoxFolderTitleDate
112Seventieth Birthday 1944
113Seventieth Birthday - Commemorative Album 1944
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Series II: Family Papers and Correspondence, 1846-1968,, 1987-1989

This series is in German, Italian, and English with some Latin.
1.25 linear feet
Arrangement:

This series is divided into the following sixteen subseries:

Scope and Content:

Series II is comprised of documents of the Lövinson family, as well as families related to them through marriage, such as the Hirschberg, Hersch, and Katzenstein families. Included in this series are personal papers, correspondence, degrees, and published works by family members. Particularly prominent are the items pertaining to Johanna Meyer's elder brother Hermann (Ermanno) Lövinson.

There are several documents which may be of interest to researchers in this series. One such item is the proclamation awarding Henriette Lövinson the Red Cross Medallion in 1908. Biographical information on several family members will also be found in this series, including on Martin Lövinson and Moritz Lövinson, although obituaries with some biographical information are available for most family members. Subseries 12 also holds information on the family foundation.

Subseries 1: General, 1936-1949

5 folders
Scope and Content:

This subseries holds documents focusing on the Lövinson family in general. The folder "Family Documents" contains sketches of family trees with birth and death dates of family members. "Family History Documents" concerns notes and documents from various archives, including the Staatsarchiv Danzig and the Gesamtarchiv der Juden in Deutschland on family members. This folder includes many original and official documents that belonged to various family members. Photographs in this subseries include those of individuals and gravesites of deceased relatives.

BoxFolderTitleDate
114Family Documentsundated, 1906
115Family History Documents1858-1958
BoxFolderTitleDate
OS 422Loevinson Family Tree; Siegfried Loevinson and Rosalie Hirshberg, wedding certificate (A.2.No.15)1858, 1894
BoxFolderTitleDate
116Newspaper Clippingsundated, 1936, 1951
117Photographsundated, 1870?, 1950
118Poetry and Plays1880-1926

Subseries 2: Ballin, Feodora (Sister), Paul, and Günther, 1936-1949

This subseries is in German.
1 folder
Scope and Content:

Subseries 2 holds a few writings of Günther Ballin as well as several clippings on the marriage and deaths of Paul and Feodora Ballin.

BoxFolderTitleDate
119Personal Papers and Clippingsundated, 1936-1949

Subseries 3: Hamburg, Lisa (Niece), 1916

This subseries is in Latin.
1 folder
Scope and Content:

This small subseries consists of a published work by Lisa Hamburg.

BoxFolderTitleDate
120Observationes Hermeneuticae in Urnas Etruscas1916

Subseries 4: Hersch Family, 1860,, 1931-1957

This subseries is in German and English.
4 folders
Arrangement:

Alphabetical.

Scope and Content:

Much of subseries 4 pertains to the artist Eugen Hersch, and are largely magazine and newspaper clippings. The material in the last folder of this subseries holds items focusing on the writers Hermann and Heinrich Hersch, and includes a few examples of their writing, a drawing of Hermann Hersch with his son Wolfgang and a short memoir written by Heinrich Hersch.

BoxFolderTitleDate
121Eugen Herschundated, 1951-1957
122Eugen Hersch – Newspaper Clippings1936-1937
123Newspaper Clippings1938, 1951
124Personal Papers of Family Members1860?, 1931-1957

Subseries 5: Hirschberg Family, 1846-1950

This subseries is in German.
1 folder
Scope and Content:

Subseries 5 contains one folder of documents. Included here are a few original documents pertaining to earlier members of the Hirschberg family as well as the text of a speech given at a memorial for Martin Hirschberg, a clipping on the death of Hans Walther Hirschberg, and a copy of a drawing of Johanna Meyer's grandfather, Moses Lewin Hirsch, later named Hirschberg.

BoxFolderTitleDate
125Personal Papers and Writings1846-1950

Subseries 6: Katzenstein, Louis (Cousin), 1896

This subseries is in German and Latin.
4 folders
Scope and Content:

This subseries holds material on Louis Katzenstein. It is largely comprised of information on and examples of his published work, but also contains a copy of his doctoral degree.

BoxFolderTitleDate
126Book – Die Lohnfrage unter dem englischen Submissionswesen1896
127Doctoral Degree from the Friedrich-Wilhelm University of Berlinundated
128List of Published Writings of Louis Katzensteinundated
129Offprint – Die deutsche Banknovelleundated

Subseries 7: Lövinson, Emil (Brother), 1883, 1947-1949

This subseries is in German.
2 folders
Scope and Content:

Subseries 7 contains examples and copies of Emil Lövinson's handwritten poetry and his published dissertation.

BoxFolderTitleDate
130Poetryundated, 1947-1949
131Ueber die Erlich’sche Diazo-Reaction1883

Subseries 8: Lövinson, Hans (Nephew), undated, 1937

This subseries is in German.
1 folder
Scope and Content:

This subseries holds Hans Lövinson's personal papers and some correspondence. The papers include a play and typed excerpts from various newspapers mentioning Hans Lövinson's recitations, lectures, and performances. The correspondence concerns family experiences and events as well as the emigration of Hans and his family.

BoxFolderTitleDate
132Personal Papers and Correspondenceundated, 1937

Subseries 9: Lövinson, Hermann (Ermanno) (Brother), 1888-1958

This subseries is in Italian, German, and English.
0.75 linear foot
Arrangement:

Alphabetical.

Scope and Content:

Subseries 9 is the largest in this series. Much of it is comprised of Hermann Lövinson's prolific writing. Most of his published work was in Italian and focused on Italian history given his position as the Director of the State Archives of Italy. Among the personal papers of this subseries are correspondence, a book he gave as a gift to his sister Johanna, and official Italian papers such as his doctoral degree, passports, and identification papers. The correspondence largely concerns Hermann Lövinson's daughter Ruth. Notes among the correspondence also mention the fate of Hermann, his wife, and one son, all of whom were deported in 1943 and died in Auschwitz. The folder "Italian Documents" holds official documents from the Italian government.

A) Correspondence and Papers

BoxFolderTitleDate
133Correspondence and Clippings1941-1958
134Doctoral Diploma1888
135Italian Documents1909, 1927
136 Das Lied vom Forestiere in Rom by Axel Ander – book for Johanna Lövinson from Hermann Lövinson1896
137Passports1937, 1939

B) Writings

BoxFolderTitleDate
138 Adlaide Ristori davanti al Tribunale di Commercio di Bologna nel 1846 1935
139Le Basi Giuridiche della Comunità Israelitica di Livorno (1595-1787) 1937
140Beiträge zur Verfassungsgeschichte zur Westfälischen Reichsstiftsstädte1888
141 Il Campo Verano1914
142 Le Concession di Banques de Préts aux Juifs par les Papes1933
143Corrispondenza diplomatica tra il principa Metternich e il cont Neipperg1916
144La costituzione di papa Bernadetto XIII sugli archivi ecclesiastici: un papa archivista1916
145Cristoforo Colombo nella Letteratura Tedesca1893
146 La Deliberazione del Consiglio Comunale di Bologna del 27 Luglio 18491932
147German Publications 1914
148G. Garibaldi e A. Masini a Comacchio nel 1848 1920
149Giuseppe Garibaldi e la sua Legione nello Stato Romano 1848-49: Parte Prima 1902
150 Giuseppe Garibaldi e la sue Legione nello Stato Romano 1848-49: Parte Seconda1904
151 Gli Ebrei di Parma Piacenza e Guastalla1932
BoxFolderTitleDate
1 52 Gli israeliti dello Stato Pontificio e la loro Evoluzione Politico Sociale nel Periodo del Risorgmento Italiano fino al 18491929
BoxFolderTitleDate
153 Il Governo Pontificio la Vedova e le Aermi di Gioacchino Muratundated
154Die Heirat des C.A. Veechy - Essayundated
155 L'iscrizione sulla tomba di Giacomo Venezian1928
BoxFolderTitleDate
21 Ist die Geschichte eine Wissenschaft?1892
22Italian Publications 1909-1920
23 Kassanaro? Oder wie Grossmutter zur Musikschriftstellerin wurde1938?
BoxFolderTitleDate
2 4 Un Medico Ebreo a Livorno nel Seicento1937
BoxFolderTitleDate
25 La Nascita e il Battesimo del Re di Roma1933
26Newspaper Clippings 1930-1933
27 Notes et Mélanges: Un Marrane du XVII Siécle à Bologne. Emmanuel Passarino Léon ou Juda Vega1938
28 Notizie e Dati Statistici sugli Ebrei Entrati a Bologna nel Secolo XV1938
BoxFolderTitleDate
2 9 Lo Spirito Publico nelle Legazioni dopo L'abbattimento della Repubblica Romana del 1849 1934
2 10Sunti Delle Sergamene Marchigiane Conservate Nel R. Archivio di Stato di Roma1930
BoxFolderTitleDate
211 La Vita degli Artisti Tedeschi in Roma1907

Subseries 10: Lövinson, Käthe (Sister), 1926-1940

This subseries is in German.
5 folders
Arrangement:

Alphabetical.

Scope and Content:

This subseries is made up of Käthe Lövinson's writings. Three folders hold information on the conditions of Jews in China in the 1930s and 1940s. Two versions of an article on the work of the Juedische Hilfskomitee in Shanghai will be found here, as well as an essay called Harbin in Manchoukuo, which describes daily life in the Chinese town of Harbin and the situation faced by immigrants who went there. An earlier essay, Frauenarbeit in Bankbetrieben, describes the growth of women working in financial institutions in Germany. There is also some correspondence between the family of Fanny Rubinsohn concerning her family's emigration to Dairen, China (now Dalien, China) from Shanghai.

BoxFolderTitleDate
212Aus dem Taetigkeitsbericht des juedischen Hilfskomitees – Shanghai Jewish Chronicle[1940]
213Correspondence1939
214Frauenarbeit in Bankbetrieben1926
215Geschichte und Taetigskeitbericht des juedischen Hilfskomittees [sic] in Shanghai1940
216Harbin in Manchoukuo1931

Subseries 11: Lövinson, Martin (Brother), 1880-1968

This subseries is in German and Latin.
3 folders
Arrangement:

Alphabetical.

Scope and Content:

Subseries 11 holds material pertaining to Martin Lövinson's law degree, including both the degree and comments from colleagues upon the fiftieth anniversary of receiving his degree. This subseries also contains an autobiography written by Martin Lövinson for his sister Johanna's fiftieth birthday at her request.

BoxFolderTitleDate
217Autobiography1924
218Fiftieth Anniversary of receiving his Juris Doctor degree1930, 1968
219Juris Doctor degree from the University of Jena1880

Subseries 12: Lövinson, Moritz (Uncle), 1897-1937

This subseries is in German.
1 folder
Scope and Content:

This subseries contains a few items pertaining to the lawyer Moritz Lövinson. In addition to by-laws of the family foundation established by him there is also a memorial book. This book contains extensive biographical information on Moritz Lövinson through descriptions of memories of him from other family members and excerpts of his correspondence.

BoxFolderTitleDate
220Memorial book and by-laws of family foundation1897-1937

Subseries 13: Lövinson, Oskar (Brother), 1898-1904

This subseries is in German and Latin.
2 folders
Arrangement:

Alphabetical.

Scope and Content:

Subseries 13 largely contains information on Oskar Lövinson's professional work as a pharmacist. Items found here include copies of his doctoral degree as well as a letter of recommendation by a professor of his. There is also a clipping on his death.

BoxFolderTitleDate
221Correspondence, Papers and Clippings1898-1904
222Ueber Keimungs- und Wachstumsversuche an Erbsen1900

Subseries 14: Lövinson, Siegfried and Rosalie (Parents), 1846-1907

This subseries is in German and Hebrew.
3 folders
Arrangement:

Alphabetical.

Scope and Content:

Subseries 14 holds material on Johanna Lövinson's parents. It includes personal documents, a diary, and a mourning book for Rosalie Lövinson. The personal papers consist of school documents for Rosalie Hirschberg and clippings on the deaths of both Siegfried and Rosalie. Rosalie Lövinson's diary does not contain any entries. The memorial book include prayers for the commemoration of Rosalie Lövinson.

BoxFolderTitleDate
223Correspondence, Writings and Clippings1846-1907
224Diary of Rosalie Lövinson1874
225Mourning book for Rosalie Lövinsonundated

Subseries 15: May, Henriette (Sister), 1906-1948

This subseries is in German.
7 folders
Arrangement:

Alphabetical.

Scope and Content:

This subseries holds items concerning Henriette May, and includes clippings and published works as well as personal papers. There is also one folder of material on her sixtieth birthday. Among the personal papers are passports and a decree awarding her the Red Cross Medallion Third Class in 1908. Clippings and publications in this subseries provide information on Henriette May's work with the Jüdischer Frauenbund für Deutschland, as well as numerous reports of her death in 1928. Among the correspondence about her death are condolences to Henriette May's family members and testimonies of her work from the numerous Jewish institutions she was involved with. The folder titled "Newspaper Clippings" also provides some information of her work and a short published piece detailing her outlook on the care of children.

BoxFolderTitleDate
226Concerning her death – Clippings and Publications1928
  Part 1 
  Part 2 
227Concerning her death – Correspondence1928, 1934
228Newspaper Clippingsundated, 1916, 1926
229Passports1916, 1927
230Personal Papersundated, 1906-1926
231Publicationsundated, 1948
232Sixtieth Birthday1922

Subseries 16: Meyer, Paul (Son), 1987-1989

This subseries is in English.
1 folder
Scope and Content:

Most of Subseries 16 is comprised of correspondence between Leonore Meyer, the adult children of Paul Meyer, Stephen and Sherry, and members of the municipal government of Tacoma, Washington concerning a memorial to be constructed for Paul Meyer in Tacoma. Accompanying the correspondence are documents describing the memorial.

BoxFolderTitleDate
233Paul Meyer Memorial1987-1989
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Series III: Professional Papers, 1868-1957

This series is in German and English.
1.75 linear foot
Arrangement:

This series is divided into four subseries: Correspondence and Individual Files, General, Performances, and Writing.

Scope and Content:

This series is comprised of papers used by Johanna Meyer in her professional life. It includes files on literary and notable individuals, materials used in her lectures, radio programs, and readings, and examples of her own writing.

Files on various individuals are included in Subseries 1. The files are largely comprised of German-language authors and artists in various fields, and include correspondence, clippings, notes, and excerpts of author's works. Subseries 2 holds material on Johanna Meyer's work as an art model and German teacher. It also contains reviews of her performance as a reciting artist (Rezitatorin) and lecturer. Subseries 3 contains documents Johanna Meyer may have used in her lectures, literary readings, and radio broadcasts. Documents in this subseries consist of clippings and notes on various topics, as well as documents pertaining to radio programs she hosted. Finally, this series also holds drafts and published versions of Johanna Meyer's own writings.

Subseries 1: Correspondence and Individual Files, 1905-1957

This subseries is in German.
0.5 linear foot
Arrangement:

Alphabetical.

Scope and Content:

Subseries 1 of Series III holds files pertaining to numerous individuals, mainly authors and others involved in the artistic sphere. Although the files are largely clippings, articles, and notes on authors and their works, Johanna Meyer also maintained correspondence with some of these authors. Excerpts of the authors' writing are also often found in this subseries. Programs for performers such as actors or other reciting artists will also be found here.

There were a few individuals with whom Johanna Meyer maintained regular contact. One such person is Julius Bab, and this subseries contains a large amount of her correspondence with him. Letters with Julius Bab include such topics as his writing and family events and vacations. Another individual she wrote was her former teacher, the actor Max Pohl. Ludwig Hardt was another actor with whom Johanna Meyer stayed in contact. There is also a very small amount of correspondence with Stefan Zweig, whom she once met on a trip to Austria.

The majority of documents found here are clippings and notes on various individuals and their works. There are many handwritten notes on authors. Johanna Meyer likely used such notes in her lectures, at literary readings, or when teaching about German literature.

BoxFolderTitleDate
234Altenberg, Peter1905, 1925
235Bab, Julius - Author file undated, 1946-1954
236 Bab, Julius - Correspondenceundated, 1919-1953
237Baeck, Leo1953
238Bamberger, Fritzundated
239Blumenthal, Willy undated
240Blumenthal-Weiss, Ilseundated, 1945
BoxFolderTitleDate
2 41Buber, Martin1936
BoxFolderTitleDate
242Einstein, Albert 1944
243Engel, Fritz1927
244Erich, Curtundated, 1949
245Frank, Brunoundated
246Goldschmidt, Kurt Walter 1927
247"Guda"1945
248 Hardt, Ludwig - Author File1925-1947
249Hardt, Ludwig - Correspondence1910-1949
250Hermann, Georg 1906-1931
251 Hermann, Georg - Newspaper Clippings - Jettchen Gebert undated
252 Herrnstadt, Rudolfundated, 1953
BoxFolderTitleDate
253 Herrnstadt, Rudolf - Newspaper Clippings1924-1933, 1953
254Kafka, Franz1934-1937
BoxFolderTitleDate
255Kastenberg, Leo 1944, 1953
256 Kerr, Alfred1926-1943
BoxFolderTitleDate
2 57Klein, William1952-1953
BoxFolderTitleDate
258Mann, Franziska undated, 1908-1927
259Mann, Katja1946
260Moser, Margaret1952
261Munthe, Axelundated, 1933
262Neues Wiener Tagblatt1925
263Neumann, Alfred undated
264Neumann, Hedwig1932
265Neumann, Hugo undated, 1914?
266Osborn, Max1944
267 Pohl, Max1911-1935
268Proskauer, Walter 1937
269Reuther, Mala1944
270Ringelnatz, Joachim undated
271 Rosenthal, Emil1929
BoxFolderTitleDate
2 72Roth, Joseph undated, 1931
BoxFolderTitleDate
OS 421Roth, Joseph - Clippings (A.2.No.15)1930-1949
BoxFolderTitleDate
273Sachs-Wagner, Leonie undated, 1934
274 Salus, Hugo1916-1928
BoxFolderTitleDate
2 75Scholz, Wilhelm von1925, 1934
BoxFolderTitleDate
276Tatti, Ruthundated
277Toller, Ernstundated
278Toller, Ernst - Newspaper Clippings1930-1939
279Wagner, Josef 1942, 1946
280 Waiser, Robertundated, 1926
BoxFolderTitleDate
2 81Webermann, Max1927-1937
BoxFolderTitleDate
282Wolff, Käteundated, 1952, 1957
283 Wolff, Lionundated, 1931
284Wolfskehl, Karl 1936-1943
BoxFolderTitleDate
31 Zweig, Frederike1944, 1949
BoxFolderTitleDate
3 2 Zweig, Stefanundated, 1923
BoxFolderTitleDate
33 Zweig, Stefan - Newspaper Clippings1924-1939
34Zweig, Stefan - Newspaper Clippings - Articles by him1920-1928

Subseries 2: General, 1947-1954

This subseries is in German and English.
1 folder
Arrangement:

Alphabetical.

Scope and Content:

This small subseries consists of material on Johanna Meyer's later work after her emigration to the United States. It contains a notebook, sketches of Johanna Meyer, contracts for modeling, brochures for art schools in Philadelphia, and notes for modeling poses and on students.

The notebook included in this subseries contains detailed notes on Johanna Meyer's art modelling and teaching of German classes, and give a clear idea of how she conducted such events. Information on her modelling appointments include the amount she was paid, the time and place of each session, and what type of costume she wore to each session. Notes for her German classes for Americans include the texts to be read and vocabulary lists.

BoxFolderTitleDate
35Art Modeling and German Teaching1947-1954

Subseries 3: Performances, 1894-1956

1 linear foot
Arrangement:

By type of material.

Scope and Content:

Subseries 3 is made up of documents pertaining to Johanna Meyer's public life and role as a lecturer, reader, radio broadcaster, and actress. It includes excerpts of literary works, clippings, notes, programs, reviews, and some correspondence.

The most prolific type of material in this subseries is the notes Johanna Meyer made for various talks. These notes consisted of excerpts of poetry and literature, and clippings on topics such as women and motherhood and life as a new immigrant. Another topic included in her talks was Jewish themes, including Jews in German literature, Jewish holidays, and important figures in Jewish history. The numerous notes are usually handwritten and have been separated into topic areas. Included with these notes are a book of poems and a book of excerpts of literary works. Notes on children's stories will be found in the folder titled "Story Hours."

Other types of papers found here include a large assortment of programs and announcements for Johanna Meyer's readings and radio broadcasts. These programs document the type of readings she gave, from her earliest readings of children's stories to her lectures and literary readings. The programs also list other individuals who worked with her and the type of events and organizations who sponsored such events. Documents on radio programs contain similar material and include listings of radio station programs, both in Germany and the United States. Transcripts of programs she made for the International Institute in Philadelphia and correspondence with them is also located here. One of Johanna Meyer's last performances was her participation in the Philadelphia radio station WFLN's commemoration of the 200th anniversary of the birth of Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. Both correspondence concerning the event and clippings describing it will be found here.

Reviews of Johanna Meyer's performances include mainly newspaper clippings of her lectures, recitations, and readings. Reviews of her work in the United States also include letters of appreciation to her. Early reviews have been pasted into a volume; the later reviews are pasted on loose paper.

Lastly, this subseries also holds a film reel of a mental health documentary produced by the Philadelphia Department of Welfare. In this film, Johanna Meyer played the mother of a mental health patient.

A) Lectures, Readings, and Recitations Material

i) Drafts and Notes

BoxFolderTitleDate
36Book of Excerpts undated
37Book of Poems and Aphorisms undated
38German Literature, Culture, and the Arts - Newspaper Clippingsundated
39Lecture Material undated, 1924-1940
310Lecture Material - Alt Berlinundated, 1913, 1936
311Lecture Material - Americanizationundated, 1944
312Lecture Material - Figures of the Old Testament in German Literature undated
BoxFolderTitleDate
313 Lecture Material - Goetheundated, 1949
BoxFolderTitleDate
314Lecture Material - Hans Christian Andersenundated, 1955
315Lecture Material - Humor undated, 1932-1952
316Lecture Material - The Jew in Light of Christian Poetsundated, 1931
317Lecture Material - The Jew in Light of Christian Poets - Newspaper Clippings undated, 1926-1935
318Lecture Material - Jewish Heroesundated, 1917, 1938
319Lecture Material - Judaism and Religious Themesundated, 1953
320Lecture Material - Motherhood and Childrenundated, 1930
321Lecture Material - Napolean1927-1937?
322Lecture Material - United States1938-1943
323Lecture Material - United States - Newspaper Clippings1941-1944
324Lecture Material - Zionism undated, 1936-1939
325Pacifismundated, 1924-1931
3 26Poetry and Literatureundated
327Reviews of Performances (Book)1894-1920
328Reviews of Performances1925-1938
329Reviews of Performances – U.S.A.1939-1951
330Story Hoursundated, 1910-1925
331Story Hours - Newspaper Clippingsundated, 1929

ii) Programs

BoxFolderTitleDate
332Early Programs1896-1917
333Programs1896-1907
BoxFolderTitleDate
41Programs1908-1914
42Programs1914-1924
43Programs1925-1929
44Programs1930-1932
45Programs1932-1937
46Programs1938-1944

B) Radio Programs

BoxFolderTitleDate
47Radio Programs Material1941-1948, 1973-1983
48Radio Programs Material – Rundfunk Berlin1924-1933
49WFLN Goethe Commemorationundated, 1949
410WFLN Goethe Commemoration – Newspaper Clippings1949-1951

C) Film

BoxFolderTitleDate
411"The Patient Returns"1950

Subseries 4: Writings, 1925-1956

This subseries is in German and English.
0.25 linear foot
Arrangement:

Alphabetical.

Scope and Content:

Subseries 4 is comprised of Johanna Meyer's own writings. A large amount of these are unpublished drafts, often unfinished. Many of the drafts appear to have been used for the articles she published in newspapers. Newspaper clippings of her published articles will also be found here, as well as her published letters to editors. Writings cover such topics as motherhood and childcare, Johanna Meyer's impressions as a new immigrant in America, and Jewish themes. There is no indication that her creative writings, which consist of a play, some short stories, and poetry, were ever published.

BoxFolderTitleDate
412Essaysundated
413Jewish Themesundated, 1925-1956
414Letters to Editors1929-1956
415Life in the United Statesundated, 1952
416Motherhoodundated, 1927-1932
417Play – Das reizende Weihnachtsgeschenk1940
418Poetryundated, 1930-1955
419Published Writingsundated, 1905-1944
420Published Writings – Clippings1900, 1929
421Short Stories and Proseundated
422Translationsundated
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Series IV: Collected Works, 1868, 1908

This series is in German.
3 folders
Arrangement:

Alphabetical.

Scope and Content:

Series IV holds several works apparently owned by Johanna Meyer. It contains two books for children and one listing of works on various historical topics. The book Lesespiel is a book intended to teach children how to read in a fun manner. The "Geliebtes Kinderbuch" has no title, and is a book of nursery rhymes. It is possible that these books were used by Johanna Meyer either in her teaching or her performing. Finally, the "Literatur-Anzeige" lists reviews of works on historical topics; the title Juden in Österreich is underscored.

BoxFolderTitleDate
423"Geliebtes Kinderbuch"undated
424Lesespiel by Karl Winternitz1868
425"Literatur-Anzeige" - Archiv für Sozialwissenschaft und Sozialpolitik1908
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