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Provenance in the World War II Era, 1933 - 1945
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About This Website

The initial results of the research are presented on this Web site, which lists works that meet the criteria of the guidelines. Inclusion on this list in no way signifies that an object has an uncertain provenance or was unlawfully appropriated during the World War II / Nazi era. Indeed, many of the objects are well documented, with no gaps in ownership or questionable transfers during the time period in question. Even where there are gaps, this is not in itself a cause for concern. As emphasized in "What is Provenance Research," incomplete provenances for any type of work of any period or origin are more often the rule rather than the exception. At this time, the Smithsonian has no reason to believe that any of the objects included on this list have provenance problems.

This Web site represents a work in progress. Its goal is to make known information about collection objects available to the public and to acquire further information where possible. Currently available information about objects is being presented now, and changes will be posted as more information is uncovered, including the addition of works deemed to fall under the project's scope or the removal of those that research reveals do not. Anyone with further information to report or questions about a work on this list should contact the Provenance Research Historian at

Find out more about provenance, lost works and related topics.

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