During the Second World War the archive of Sozialistische Monatshefte, in the possession of the IISH since 1939, was seized by the German occupation army and transported eastward. It fell into the hands of the Red Army after the end of World War II, and was taken to Moscow where it was kept in a secret place.
In 2002 the Russian Federation gave 22 displaced collections, including this archive, to its original Dutch owners.
Picture postcard from Kurt Eisner, inventory nr 29
This large archive has now been fully arranged. It yields a mass of interesting correspondence on the Revisionismus debate, as Sozialistische Monatshefte (1897-1933) was the platform for the Revisionist wing of the German Social-Democrat Party SPD. It also welcomed other viewpoints. Contributions by anarchists and Poalei Zionists were published in this monthly journal.
An elaborate 'Rundschau' included reviews of the socialist movement, economic, political and cultural, and sexual developments worldwide. There were literary contributions from abroad (e.g. , Multatuli’s Vorstenschool, translated into German by Dirk Troelstra) as well.
Postcard from Hermann Hesse, inventory nr 82
The editing of the journal involved an elaborate correspondence from the editor Joseph Bloch (1871-1930) with many different circles. Apart from obvious correspondents such as the Kautsky’s, Bernsteins, and Adlers, some other important names are: Kurt Eisner, Morris Hillquit, Hermann Hesse, Herman Heijermans, Georg Hirschfeld, Magnus Hirschfeld (Wissenschaftllich-Humanitäres Komitee), Heinrich Mann, Thomas Mann, George Bernard Shaw, Philip Snowden, Bertha von Suttner, Filippo Turati, Manuel Ugarte, and Miguel de Unanumo.
A minor part of the archive remained in Germany in 1945, and is now in the Bundesarchiv, including a correspondence file with “particularly important people.” The intention is to complete the archive at the IISH with these folders.
A complete online edition of the Monatshefte is to be found at the website of the Friedrich Ebertstiftung.