Updated April 19, 2020 with links to newer articles and blog posts.
I saw this recently as part of my search for World War II articles – More than 13 million documents online: https://arolsen-archives.org/en/news/more-than-13-million-documents/.
Several later updates: Arolsen Archives quietly adds 13 million more WWII records… — Find Lost Russian & Ukrainian Family and Ancestry® Unveils Two Unique Holocaust Record Collections, Making Them Searchable Online for the First Time Ever – July 31, 2019 and More than 13 million documents online – Arolsen Archives International Center on Nazi Persecution
People from all over the world can now conduct research online to discover the fates of victims of National Socialist persecution: the Arolsen Archives have published a new online archive in partnership with the World Holocaust Remembrance Center, Yad Vashem. The database contains a comprehensive collection of documents from concentration camps, including prisoner cards and death notices. The more than 13 million documents featuring information on over 2.2 million people persecuted by the Nazi Regime are part of the UNESCO’s World Documentary Heritage and are a key focus of the collection of the Arolsen Archives. This database is the first of several large collections scheduled to go online in future.
“Our archive bears testimony to the atrocities perpetrated by the National Socialists. Soon there won’t be any survivors left to tell us about them. That is why it is so important that the original documents can speak to coming generations in their place,” Floriane Azoulay, Director of the Arolsen Archives, uses these words to describe the significance of the online archive. Coinciding with the publication of the documents, the institution founded by the Allies under the name “International Tracing Service” is changing its name to “Arolsen Archives – International Center on Nazi Persecution”. A new corporate image and a modern website complete with online archive aim to reach out to a larger audience and inform more people about the consequences of anti-Semitism, discrimination and racism.
Partnership with Yad Vashem
Since 2015, the Arolsen Archives have uploaded a number of small collections, always with the ultimate aim of making larger collections available to the public in the future. In addition to the collection of data and metadata built up over decades, what was needed was a platform powerful enough to manage the task. Yad Vashem offered to take care of the technical side with the overall aim of augmenting Holocaust documentation and making it available worldwide. The joint project utilizes Yad Vashem’s state-of-the-art technology for fast data management and extended place and name search. The result is an easily accessible, user-friendly online archive.
“For nearly half a century Yad Vashem has been working closely with the Arolsen Archives. Already in the 1950’s Yad Vashem scanned a copy of the documentation from the then International Tracing Service, in order to have better access to information about the fate of the Jewish victims. The current partnership with Arolsen Archives leverages Yad Vashem’s technical and professional capabilities with Arolsen Archives assets in order to enhance Holocaust research and study”