Italy Ratifies the Agreement to Open the ITS Archive

Italy has officially ratified the agreement to open the archive. On September 21, the Italian government deposited its letter of ratification with the German government. Now, only Greece and France have yet to ratify the agreement. You can help advance this process by communicating to their embassies the importance of opening this archive without further delay. They can be contacted at:

His Excellency Alexandros P. Mallias, Ambassador of Greece to the United States, Embassy of Greece, 2217 Massachusetts Ave., NW, Washington, D.C. 20008, Phone: 202-939-1300

His Excellency Pierre Vimont, Ambassador of France to the United States, Embassy of France, 4101 Reservoir Rd., NW, Washington, D.C. 20007, Phone: 202-949-6000

The Museum Receives the First Installment of ITS Material

On Monday, August 20, Reto Meister, the Director of the International Tracing Service (ITS) in Bad Arolsen, Germany, hand-delivered the first installment of digital copies of ITS records to the Museum. These documents, approximately 18 million digital images of incarceration records, contain concentration camp, transport, prison, ghetto, and Gestapo documentation. It is the first of several transfers that will eventually result in a copy of the entire ITS archive being housed at the Museum.

While Greece and France must still ratify the agreement before the archive can be made available to the public, the Museum pushed to obtain copies in advance of the ratification. This will allow our technical and archival experts to examine the material and upgrade our computer and software systems to be ready to serve survivors after the diplomatic process is completed. We are hopeful that the necessary technical systems will be in place by the end of the year.

Read a joint statement from the Museum and the ITS about the transfer

The next installment of material we expect to receive is a digital copy of the ITS Central Name Index (CNI), scheduled to arrive by the end of October. The CNI contains the names of the approximately 17.5 million people in the ITS records. The CNI is comprised of approximately 50 million digital images, and the Museum is developing processes to make the information more easily accessible.