Guide to the Christopher Jeffrey Collection, 1899-1955

AR 25348 / MF 1001

Processed by LBI Staff

Leo Baeck Institute

Center for Jewish History

15 West 16th Street

New York, N.Y. 10011

Phone: (212) 744-6400

Fax: (212) 988-1305



© 2009 Leo Back Institute, New York. All rights reserved.
Center for Jewish History, Publisher.
Finding aid was encoded in EAD 2002 by Chris Bentley on June 14, 2010. Description is in English.
November 2010: Added links to digital objects in Container List. May 2016: dao links added by Emily Andresini.

Creator:Jeffrey, Christopher
Creator:Roth, Guenther
Title:Christopher Jeffrey Collection
Abstract:Correspondence (originals and transcriptions) of Edgar Jaffe and Else von Richthofen Jaffe, accompanied by an inventory of letters with annotations and comments by Guenther Roth. Also included are photocopies from the diary of the sociologist Hans von Eckardt.
Languages:This collection is in German with some English.
Quantity:1.75 linear feet: 3 boxes
Identification:AR 25348 / MF 1001
Repository: Leo Baeck Institute Archives
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Biographical Note

C. Jeffrey is a descendent of the Edgar Jaffé and Else von Richthofen/Jaffé family who were very close to Max Weber and are a classic example of the German Jewish and non-Jewish society during the Kaiserreich and the Weimar Republic.

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Scope and Content Note

Correspondence (originals and transcriptions) of Edgar Jaffe and Else von Richthofen Jaffe, accompanied by an inventory of letters with annotations and comments by Guenther Roth.

Else von Richthofen/Jaffé and Marianne Weber corresponded for many years, as did Edgar Jaffé and his coeditor Max Weber on editorial matters and legal advice during and before the couple's separation. The first extant item in the present collection is the draft of a letter in which Else asked Marianne Weber and indirectly Max Weber for help in her personal and professional quandaries (spring of 1900).

The correspondence between Else and Edgar also covers the birth and early years of the four children, of whom Friedel and Hans had to emigrate after 1933 (Peter, Else's son from Otto Gross died in 1915, Marianne Jaffé/von Eckardt did not manage to emigrate, but survived.) The bulk of the Jeffrey collection deals with the correspondence between Else and her emigrated sons during and after the Nazi period.

Also included are photocopies from the diary of the sociologist Hans von Eckardt (1890-1957), which largely fills in the void left by the interruption of the transatlantic correspondence of Else Jaffé-von Richthofen und her two emigrated sons, Friedel Jaffé/Jeffrey and Hans Jaffé between 1942 and 1946.

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Access and Use

Access Restrictions

Open to researchers.

Access Information

Collection is digitized. Follow the links in the Container List to access the digitized materials.

Use Restrictions

The copyright of the transcriptions and explanatory essays remain with Guenther Roth.

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Access Points

This collection is indexed under the following headings in the online catalog. Researchers desiring materials about related topics, persons, or places should search the catalog using these headings.

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

Separated Material

Audio CD removed to the LBI A/V Collection.

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Collection is available on 3 reels of microfilm (MF 1001).

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Preferred Citation

Published citations should take the following form:

Identification of item, date (if known); Christopher Jeffrey Collection; AR 25348; box number; folder number; Leo Baeck Institute.

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Transcripts and summary translations have been produced by the Max Weber specialist, Guenther Roth (Columbia University). The transcription is almost complete, with the exception of a few mundane paragraphs (weather reports, shopping items, etc.).

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Container List

The following section contains a detailed listing of the materials in the collection. Follow the links to access the digitized materials.


BOX 1, 1870-1950s

11Draft Else to Marianne Weber, 1899 / Postcard from Berta Jaffé to Edgar, 1901 / 29 letters from Edgar to Else, 19021899-1902
12Else to Edgar Jaffé (24 letters)1902
13Edgar to Else (28 letters and 2 postcards)1903-1905
14Else to Edgar, 1908 (1 letter) / Else to Frieda (Friedel) Gross, 1908-1909 (2 letters) . Else to Edgar (death of father), 1914-1915 (2 letters)1908-1915
15Edgar Jaffé to Else (First Balkan War, 2 letters)1913
1618 letters from Edgar Jaffé: 12 letters, Brussels 1915 (Military Government) / 4 letters, near Metz 1917 / 1 postcard and 1 letter fragment, 19181915-1918
175 letters from Else to Edgar, 1918 / an incomplete draft of Else’s obituary for Edgar, 19211918, 1921
18Autobiographical notes by Else (no page 7, but continuous)probably late 1950s
19Transcripts and comments for correspondence -- Roth, Guenther : Correspondence Else von Richthofen (Oct. 8, 1874-Dec. 22, 1973) and Edgar Jaffé (May 14, 1866-April 29, 1921) from the family archive of Christopher Jeffrey, their grandson, New York, NY, 2008/09 (typescript, 72 pages)1902
110Guenther Roth transcripts and comments for correspondence1903-1905, 1907-1915, 1915-1918
112Friedrich Baron von Richthofen (1844-1915), detailed diary in Franco-German war 1870, begins on Aug. 18 (siege of Strasbourg, capitulation of Metz, capitulation of Neu-Breisach (Neuf-Brisach), siege of Belfort)1870
113Calendar entries of Anna Baroness von Richthofen (1851-1930): July 14, 1907 – 1910 in booklet # 36 / May 1910 through August 1914 in booklet # 40 / 1919 in booklet # 351907-1919
114‘Klaenge aus der alten Heimat’ in booklet # 37: handwritten entries of poems and sentences
115Letter from Edgar to his mother from SpainApril 19, 1888
116Vital documents of Friedel Jaffé
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BOX 2, 1932-2009

217Jaffé correspondence1933-1934
218Correspondence1932 (one letter) and 1933
219Else to Friedel Jaffé and othersJanuary – July 1934
220CorrespondenceAugust – December 1934
221Congratulations on Frances’ birthOctober 17, 1934
222Else Jaffé to Friedel J. and family (mostly) (ca. 62 letters)1935
223Else to Friedel (ca. 28 letters)1936
224Else to Friedel and Marianne, and return (ca. 27 letters)1937
225Else to Friedel and Hanno to Else (ca. 45 letters)1938
226Else to Friedel, Marianne, Hans and vice versa1939
227Else to Friedel and replies (ca. 34 letters)1940
228Letters to Marianne – G. Scholvin, Guggi, Hans, Reinhard
229Letters from Alfred Weber1934-1949
230Elsa and Friedel (29 letters)1941
232Various correspondence1970-1980
233Documents (copies incl. Edgar Jaffé’s certificate of baptism), family tree
234‘Friedel and Hans’: Jaffé family reminiscences recorded on Oct. 5, 1977 from a conversation between Friedel Jeffrey, just turned 74, and Hans Jaffe, just a month before his death at age 68. - First part transcribed by Mary Schuster Jaffe on June 12, 1989 / second part excerpted with verbatim quotes by Guenther Roth, January 20091977, 1989, 2009
235Roth, Guenther : From the first antisemitic and social discrimination (1919/21) to the official persecution in 1933/34 , typescript, 18 p. (Copyright 2009 with Guenther Roth)2009
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"Die neue Vernunft", 1942-1946

Scope and Content:

The sociologist Hans v. Eckardt (1890-1957) lost his professorship in 1933, was declared unworthy for military service in spite of high decorations as an officer in the First World War and denied employment because he was first married to a Jewish woman, Gertrud Dannheisser, and then to a "Mischling of the first degree," Marianne Jaffé.

Hans v. Eckardt poured all his frustrations about his misfortune in the Nazi years into the diary. Marginal comments in the handwriting of Marianne v. Eckhardt date from the postwar period; they express disagreement with facts or exaggerations.

The photocopy of Hans v. Eckardt’s diary was given to Guenther Roth on Sept. 3, 2009 in Munich by Dr. Bettina Hemich, a daughter of Hans and Marianne v. Echardt, to be included in the donation by her cousin, Christopher Jeffrey (Baltimore). Other parts of the Jaffé Estate in the possession of Dr. Hemich will go to the Deutsche Literatur Archiv in Marbach, Germany.

The diary’s title, "Die neue Vernunft," was originally given to parts III and IV, dedicated to von Eckardt’s children, Wolfgang and Ursula from his first wife; they immigrated to New York in 1935.

3 1 Diary May 21, 1942 – November 27, 1942
3 2 Diary March 1943 –August 27, 1943 and May 8, 1944, June 22, 1944
3 3 Diary July 8, 1944 – December 1944
3 4 Diary January 3, 1945 – December 31, 1945
3 5 Diary 24-Dec-45
3 6 Diary January 1, 1946 – November 1946
3 7 Correspondence and reports Nov. 1944-Dec. 1945, undated
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