Volume 1  –  document 244

On 30 August 1936 State Secretary Hans Pfundtner complains to the Bavarian Minister President about Jewish spa guests in Bad Kissingen1BayHStA, MF 67 937. This document has been translated from German.

Handwritten letter from the state secretary in the Reich and Prussian Ministry of the Interior, Pfundtner, currently resident in Kissingen, to the Bavarian Minister President,2The Minister President was Ludwig Siebert (1874–1942), lawyer; civil servant in Bavaria from 1897; mayor of Rothenburg ob der Tauber, 1908–1919, and of Lindau, 1919–1933; member of the Bavarian People’s Party (BVP); joined the NSDAP in 1931; Bavarian minister of finance and minister president, 1933–1942. dated 30 August 19363Parts of the original are underlined by hand. The letter is written on the stationery of the state secretary of the Reich and Prussian Ministry of the Interior.

Dear esteemed Minister President,

With my sincere thanks for your friendly letter dated the 21st of this month,4The letter is not in the file. I am pleased to inform you that I have been staying at the public spa hotel for four days and feel quite well again here in Kissingen. Two things, however, have the potential to detract from this local sojourn. The one thing is the automobile and motorcycle traffic around the spa hotel at the moment, especially the lorries, which clatter like machine guns often late into the night and then again in the morning. I believe it is time to think once again about a bypass road for this traffic, so that at least the actual spa and the spa gardens are reasonably free of noise. Even now it would be possible, in my opinion, to reduce the excessive noise from the rattling and honking, especially during the night, through a police regulation or a police ordinance.

The second thing is the many Jews! For years I haven’t seen so many Jews together in one place as there are here right now in Kissingen.5Bad Kissingen had already made international headlines in 1934 because of a boycott against Jewish spa guests. In 1935 the Bavarian authorities discussed the alleged ‘flooding’ of the spa by Jews, which a registration of the visitors showed to be far from reality: see the correspondence of the State Ministry of the Interior from autumn 1934 and 1935: ibid. At many places, for example at the saltern, there are downright ‘masses’ of them. I believe that the town and spa administration really do have to do something about this, especially as the Olympic Games are now over. With all due tolerance for gravely ill patients, Kissingen does not by any means need to become a Jewish spa town!

Many thanks for the kindness you have bestowed upon me once again, especially in relation to hunting! As it stands now, I will attend only part of the Party congress!6The NSDAP rally took place in Nuremberg from 8 to 14 Sept. 1936. Afterwards, I want to go by car to Upper Bavaria (Garmisch) with my wife. When we pass through Munich, I also want to take a look at the Nymphenburg porcelain factory, among other things! I hope to see you again soon!

With the best regards and compliments from year to year and
Heil Hitler,
Your very devoted7Siebert responded on 2 Sept. 1937 to the effect that he would take care of the traffic noise issue. He noted that he was surprised, however, by Pfundtner’s claims about the Jews because among the 4,200 visitors in the year prior, there were only 80 Jews, most of whom were foreigners and therefore desirable as a source of foreign currency. Siebert wrote that he would look into the matter as he likewise had no interest in a ‘Jewified Kissingen’: ibid. Pfundtner issued a decree in July 1937 to segregate Jews in spa resorts: see Doc. 289, 24 July 1937.

This document is part of:
German Reich 1933–1937 (Berlin, Boston: De Gruyter, 2019)