An American Witness in Nazi Frankfurt

The Diaries of Robert W. Heingartner, 1928-1937

by Andrew Bonnell (Volume editor)
©2011 Others X, 447 Pages


The diaries of Robert W. Heingartner, a US consular official posted to Frankfurt am Main, provide an account of the rise of Nazism in that city from 1928 to the end of 1937, when the regime appeared to have stabilized itself, written by a close and careful observer. Heingartner describes the impact of the Depression on the life of the city, and closely monitors the political crises that accompanied the rise of the Nazi party from a fringe radical group to becoming the ruling party in 1933. He documents the establishment of Nazi rule in Frankfurt from 1933 on, including economic and social conditions, and the persecution of political opponents and Frankfurt’s Jewish population, with whose plight he was confronted as a consular official. He also relates the response to the regime on the part of ordinary Germans whose lives were characterized by shortages, rumours, grumbling and denunciations.


X, 447
ISBN (Softcover)
Publication date
2011 (July)
Europe Modern History (1789-1945) Nazi Frankfurt Germany Modern History (1789-1945)
Bern, Berlin, Bruxelles, Frankfurt am Main, New York, Oxford, Wien, 2011. X, 447 pp., num. ill.

Biographical notes

Andrew Bonnell (Volume editor)

Andrew G. Bonnell is a Senior Lecturer in History at the University of Queensland. Educated at Sydney University, Marburg and the Technische Universität Berlin, he has numerous publications in German history including The People’s Stage in Imperial Germany. Social Democracy and Culture, 1890-1914 and Shylock in Germany: Antisemitism and the German Theatre from the Enlightenment to the Nazis. Robert Wayne Heingartner (1881-1945) was a career consular official in the US Foreign Service. Posts in Italy, Vienna (during the First World War), Kaunas, Lithuania, Frankfurt (1928-1939), and Canada. He was a meticulous diarist, keeping a detailed daily record of his work and life in Lithuania and in Frankfurt during the rise of Nazism and the early years of the «Third Reich».


Title: An American Witness in Nazi Frankfurt