Sources on German Himalayan Expeditions (1929 — 1989) in the Archiv des Deutschen Alpenvereins (DAV), Munich


This list pro­vides users details of moun­taineer­ing expe­di­tions from Ger­many to the Himalayas between 1929 and 1989. The his­to­ry of Indo-Ger­man entan­gle­ments in the Himalayas goes back to the trav­els of the Schlag­in­tweit broth­ers Adolph, Her­mann, and Robert in the mid-nine­teenth cen­tu­ry (1854–1857). How­ev­er, any seri­ous effort at climb­ing the peaks only began in the ear­ly twen­ti­eth cen­tu­ry and in this con­text, the Ger­man moun­taineer­ing expe­di­tions belonged to the very few for­eign expe­di­tions per­mit­ted to climb in the Himalayas, begin­ning with the attempt to climb Kangchen­jun­ga (8586m) in 1929. Sev­er­al expe­di­tions to the Himalayas were con­duct­ed since then most­ly with the sup­port of the Deutsche Alpen­vere­in (DAV). The DAV, which was estab­lished in 1869 and exists until today, hous­es the archive of these expe­di­tions. The bulk of sources in the Archiv des Deutschen Alpen­vere­ins on the Himalayan expe­di­tions are in the fol­low­ing hold­ings: Archiva­lien von Expe­di­tion­s­ge­sellschaften (EXP), Per­so­nen­nach­lässe (NAS), Fotografien und Postkarten (FOP) and Doku­men­ta­tio­nen (DOK). A major­i­ty of the writ­ten sources from the expe­di­tions are cor­re­spon­dences, diaries, expe­di­tion plan­ning and reports. Oth­er sources like pho­tographs, audio record­ings and pub­lic­i­ty mate­ri­als are also avail­able in the holdings.

Expe­di­tions car­ried out in part­ner­ship with oth­er coun­tries such as Aus­tria, are also men­tioned in this list giv­en that they were car­ried out with the sup­port of the DAV or the Deutsche Himalaya Stiftung (DHS). The oth­er insti­tu­tion involved in Ger­man moun­taineer­ing expe­di­tions was the Deutsches Insti­tut für Aus­lands­forschung (DIAF), estab­lished by Karl Maria Her­rligkof­fer in 1952 to explore and climb moun­tains. The mem­bers of these moun­taineer­ing expe­di­tions also pub­lished their reports either in the form of arti­cles in jour­nals or as mono­graphs. These are sys­tem­at­i­cal­ly list­ed in the bib­li­og­ra­phy and orga­nized accord­ing to each decade, begin­ning in the 1930s and end­ing in 2016. The list also offers an overview of arti­cles on the var­i­ous expe­di­tions in the jour­nals of the DAV [DAV Jahrbuch], the British and Amer­i­can Alpine Clubs [Alpine Jour­nal & Amer­i­can Alpine Jour­nal], as well as the Indi­an Himalayan Club [Himalayan Jour­nal]. The lit­er­a­ture com­piled in this list is not exhaus­tive and lim­it­ed to Ger­man and Eng­lish lan­guage pub­li­ca­tions. Most jour­nals men­tioned in the list are avail­able in the pub­lic domain. 

The list is linked to the MIDA Archival Reflex­i­con arti­cle “Locat­ing Himalayan porters in the Archiva­lien der Expe­di­tion­s­ge­sellschaften of the Ger­man Alpine Club (1929–1939).”

Down­load the list here as PDF or as sortable XLS.