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).”