Silverware formerly owned by members of the Jewish community

In 1939 and 1940, the Munich Municipal History Museum (which was to become the Münchner Stadtmuseum in 1955) acquired 205 items of silverware from Munich's Municipal Pawn Office (Städtisches Leihamt). The entire collection comprised items owned by Jewish families living in Munich who had been forced to hand them over to the Municipal Pawn Office's purchasing department by the State following the enactment of the "Third Decree on the Basis of the Ordinance regarding the Registration of Jewish Assets" on February 21, 1939 (Reich Law Gazette 1938 I. page 282).

A total of 57 items of silverware were returned to their rightful owners after 1945 as part of the reparation process that followed the fall of the Nazi regime. Families whose property had been confiscated were required to submit an application for restitution by a fixed deadline. In all, 148 such items still reside in the Münchner Stadtmuseum today. The vast majority were made by Munich-based silversmiths between the 18th and 20th centuries.

There was a major turn of events in summer 2022 as a result of close collaboration with Dr. Matthias Weniger of the Bavarian National Museum and the discovery of files in Munich archives. This provided nearly all the names of the Munich families who were forced to hand over their valuables to the Pawn Office. The Münchner Stadtmuseum has been able to attribute almost all the 145 "silver levy" items to a name.

The names of 47 Jewish owners of these items have been identified. Since that discovery, the Münchner Stadtmuseum has been researching the family history of the 47 families concerned and searching for heirs. To help with this hunt for heirs, the Museum has successfully applied for funding for a short project from the German Lost Art Foundation. The Münchner Stadtmuseum is undertaking an extensive search for the descendants of the families concerned so that it can return the silverware to its rightful owners. The museum receives extensive support from the Holocaust Claims Processing Office in New York (HCPO).

Furthermore, between January and July 2014, the collection has been shown publicly as part of an exhibition entitled “M. T. Wetzlar, Munich silversmiths, est. 1875 – aryanized 1938” in the hope of uncovering clues that may help us to establish the provenance of these items.

A 216-page catalogue with approximately 250 plates, many in full colour, published by Arnoldsche Art Publishers, Stuttgart, to accompany the exhibition. The publication is available (in english and german) at our Online-Shop 39,80 €.

Plan Your Visit

Opening hours

Although the Münchner Stadtmuseum's exhibitions closed on January 8, 2024, for a complete renovation, the cinema and the Stadtcafé will remain open to visitors until June 2027.

Information to Von Parish Costume Library in Nymphenburg

Filmmuseum München – Screenings
Tuesday / Wednesday 6.30 pm and 9 pm
Thursday 7 pm
Friday / Saturday 6 pm and 9 pm
Sunday 6 pm

Getting here

S/U-Bahn station: Marienplatz
U-Bahn station: Sendlinger Tor
Bus 52/62 stop: St.-Jakobs-Platz


St.-Jakobs-Platz 1
80331 München
Phone +49-(0)89-233-22370
Fax +49-(0)89-233-25033
E-Mail stadtmuseum(at)
E-Mail filmmuseum(at)

Ticket reservation Phone +49-(0)89-233-24150