TABLE OF CONTENTS

Collection Summary

Biographical Sketch

Scope and Content

Organization of the Collection

Index Terms

Administrative Information 

Contact Information

Series Level Descriptions

1 - Correspondence: 1940-1951. 

2 - Photographs: ca. 1870, ca. 1935-ca. 1958. 

3 - Miscellaneous: ca. 1900-ca. 1945.

Box List

SERIES 1 - Correspondence 

SERIES 2 - Photographs 

SERIES 3 - Miscellaneous 

National Gallery of Canada Library and Archives

Siegfried Thalheimer fonds:

Finding Aid



Collection Summary

Title: Siegfried Thalheimer fonds. 
Dates: – ca. 1870-1951; predominant 1940-1946. 
Quantity:  – 10 cm of textual records and 27 b&w photographs. 

Biographical Sketch

Siegfried Thalheimer was born in Düsseldorf in 1899, the son of Johanna and Isaak Thalheimer, who was editor-publisher of the Düsseldorfer Lokalzeitung from 1905 until 1931. After obtaining his Ph.D. from the Friedrichs-Wilhelms-Universität in 1926, Thalheimer worked as a journalist for his father's newpaper, writing anti-Nazi articles, as well as art reviews of exhibitions held at two galleries in Düsseldorf, the Galerie Stern and the Galerie Flechtheim. In 1928 he married Gerda Stern, who was born in Mönchengladbach in 1902, the daughter of Julius Stern (1867-1934) and Selma Stern née Heilbron (1871-1964). Before her marriage to Thalheimer, she had trained as a pediatric nurse under Dr. Selma Meyer. Gerda Thalheimer returned to the Luisenschule to complete her Abitur in 1926 and later spent a year and a half studying social sciences and art history in universities at Bonn and Berlin. 

In March 1933, after Thalheimer had been blacklisted for his anti-Nazi activities, he and his wife and daughter Ruth (b. 1929) moved to Saarbrücken, where he founded and edited Westland, an anti-Nazi newspaper that actively opposed the annexation of the Saar to the German state. In 1934 he lost control of Westland and subsequently relocated to Paris, where he published a Jewish political journal, Ordo. When France declared war on Germany in September 1939, he was interned as an enemy alien, released in February 1940, and afterwards served as a prestataire (worker) in the French army. In November 1940, Thalheimer received a United States emergency visa for himself, his wife, and their daughter. The family escaped France via Spain and Morocco and arrived in New York in March 1941. In New York, Thalheimer supported himself and his family by selling paintings provided by his brother-in-law Max Stern that had formerly been part of the inventory of the Galerie Stern, Düsseldorf, and West's Galleries, London. A short time later he formed Fine Arts Associates with Otto Gerson (1902-1962), continuing to sell paintings shipped to New York from Max Stern's Montreal location, the Dominion Gallery. Some of the works that Stern sent to Thalheimer were sold through E. & A. Silberman Galleries, the Rosenberg Gallery, and the Nierendorf Gallery.

Disillusioned with the art business and separated from his wife, Gerda, Thalheimer returned to Germany in the 1950s. He first lived in the Salzburg region, then in Munich, and finally in the Bavarian village of Seenon. During this period in Germany, he resumed his writing career, publishing Gespräch über Deutschlands in 1959 (München, C.H. Beck) and Die Affäre Dreyfus in 1963 (München, Deutscher Taschenbuch Verlag). Siegfried Thalheimer died in Seenon in 1981. Gerda and Ruth remained in New York after Siegfried moved to Germany. Gerda Thalheimer attended Hunter College in New York and Columbia University's library school, where she received a master's degree in 1956. She died in New York in 1994.

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Scope and Content

The fonds consists of family documents, including photographs; correspondence to and from West's Galleries; correspondence between Max Stern and Siegfried Thalheimer; photographs of artworks from the Galerie Stern, Düsseldorf, West's Galleries, London, and the Dominion Gallery, Montreal; and miscellaneous ephemera related to Julius Stern's clothing factory in Mönchengladbach, the Galerie Stern, and West's Galleries.

Source of supplied title proper: Title based on contents of fonds.

Immediate source of acquisition: Donated to the National Gallery of Canada Library and Archives by Ruth Thalheimer, New York.

Language: Text is mainly in English. Some text is in German.

Related groups of records: Other records related to Siegfried Thalheimer can be found in the Dominion Gallery fonds, the Max Stern fonds, and the West's Galleries Limited fonds.

Finding aids: Series level descriptions and box list available.

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Organization of the Collection

This collection is organized into 3 series.
Series 1 - Correspondence, 1940-1951..
Series 2 - Photographs, ca. 1870, ca. 1935-ca. 1958.
Series 3 - Miscellaneous. ca. 1900-ca. 1945.

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Index Terms

Names:
Stern, Julius, 1867-1934
Stern, Max, 1904-1987
Thalheimer, Gertrud, 1902-1994
Thalheimer, Siegfried, 1899-1981
Organizations:
Dominion Gallery, Montreal, Quebec
Fine Arts Associates, New York, New York
Galerie Stern, Düsseldorf, Germany
West's Galleries, London, England
Document Types:
Correspondence.
Photographs.

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Administrative Information

Processing Information

Collection processed and finding aid prepared by Philip Dombowsky in 2009.

Preferred Citation

[Title of item], Siegfried Thalheimer fonds, National Gallery of Canada Library and Archives.

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Contact Information

Cyndie Campbell
Head, Archives, Documentation and Visual Resources
Library and Archives
National Gallery of Canada
380 Sussex Drive
P.O. Box 427, Station A
Ottawa, Ontario
K1N 9N4
 
T 613-990-0597
F 613-990-9818
 
ccampbel@gallery.ca 


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Series Level Descriptions

 

Correspondence. – 1940-1951. – 8 cm of textual records and 3 photographs. 

Series consists of correspondence originating with West's Galleries, London and correspondence between Siegfried and Gerda Thalheimer and Max Stern. The correspondence from West's Galleries, contained in one file, mainly concerns paintings sent by Stern from London to the United States. The seven files containing Stern/Thalheimer correspondence mainly include letters from Max Stern to Siegfried and Gerda Thalheimer but there are also carbon copies of letters from Siegfried to Max and copies of letters to and from various art dealers and clients. The Stern/Thalheimer correspondence contains numerous references to artworks owned by William Landman, Fritz Schön, Hugo Simon, and Harry Southam. 
Source of supplied title proper: Title based on contents of series.
Arrangement: Material within each file is arranged chronologically.
Language: Text is mainly in English. A few items are in German.
Finding aids: Box list available.

See Box List for this Series

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Photographs. – ca. 1870, ca. 1935-ca. 1958. – 24 b&w photographs. 

Series consists of family photographs and photographs of artworks. Included in the former group is a photograph of a portrait of Selma Stern painted ca. 1919 by the Düsseldorf painter Walter Petersen (1862-1950); a photograph of a portrait of Julius Stern painted ca. 1919 by Eduard von Gebhardt (1838-1925); a photograph from ca. 1870 showing Julius Stern and his older brother Benjamin; and photocopies of two photographs depicting Siegfried Heilbron (cousin of Selma Stern, née Heilbron). The photographs of artworks show paintings formerly owned by the Galerie Stern, Düsseldorf, West's Galleries, London, and the Dominion Gallery, Montreal. Included are photographs of paintings by Jan Brueghel I (1568-1625), Jacob Duck (ca. 1600-1667), Adriaen van Ostade (1610-1685), Master of Frankfurt (1460-ca. 1533), Master of Saint Barbara (active 16th century), and Philips Wouwerman (1619-1668). 
Source of supplied title proper: Title based on contents of series.
Finding aids: Box list available.

See Box List for this Series

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Miscellaneous. – ca. 1900-ca. 1945. – 2 cm of textual records. 

Series consists of typescripts and other documents related to Stern and Heilbron family history; photocopies of photographs showing the Galerie Stern (25 Königsallee, Düsseldorf), the Stern's home in Düsseldorf (48 Charlottenstrasse), and Julius Stern sitting in the garden at Grafenberg; letterhead with a sketch of Julius Stern's clothing factory in München-GladbachMönchengladbach; a visiting card from Galerie Julius Stern; a brochure announcing a Carl Spitzweg (1808-1885) exhibition in 1928; a brochure for an auction of Galerie Stern paintings at Kunsthaus Lempertz, Cologne, (13 November 1937); a floor plan sketch of West's Galleries, London; and a West's Galleries catalogue, Dutch and Flemish Landscape: Patinier-Ruisdael (1938), containing annotations by Max Stern. The series also includes a short biographical note on Siegfried Thalheimer as an art dealer and a copy of a talk on Swedish author Selma Lagerlöf delivered by Iris Stern to her Montreal book club, ca. 1945.
Source of supplied title proper: Title based on contents of series.
Language: Most text is in English. A few items are in German.
Finding aids: Box list available.

See Box List for this Series

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Detailed Description of the Collection

Box List

Series 1 - Correspondence 

Box Folder
Box 1 File 1 West's Galleries 1940-1941
File 2 Stern/Thalheimer 1942
File 3 Stern/Thalheimer 1943
File 4 Stern/Thalheimer 1944
File 5 Stern/Thalheimer 1945 *note: file contains 3 b&w photographs showing a Greco-Roman encaustic painting formerly in the collection of Theodor Graf, Berlin
File 6 Stern/Thalheimer 1946
File 7 Stern/Thalheimer 1947
File 8 Stern/Thalheimer 1947-1951
File 9 Stern/Thalheimer undated *note: file includes two letters to Siegfried Thalheimer from Rose Millman

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Series 2 - Photographs 

Box Folder
Box 1 File 10 Family photographs *note: file includes 4 b&w photographs
File 11 Photographs of art works (from Galerie Stern, Düsseldorf; West's Galleries, London; and Dominion Gallery, Montreal) *note: file includes 20 b&w photographs

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Series 3 - Miscellaneous 

Box Folder
Box 1 File 12 Stern and Heilbron family history *note: file contains family history typescripts and photocopies of family-related documents from the Senat der Freien und Hansestadt Hamburg
File 13 Julius Stern *note: file includes documents related to Julius Stern's clothing factory in Mönchengladbach and the Galerie Stern, Düsseldorf, along with photocopies of 3 photographs
File 14 Exhibition and auction ephemera
File 15 Miscellaneous typescripts and articles

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