From the archive portal: DFG project "Subject-based access using the example of the Weimar Republic" completed

By Archivportal-D

"Discovering themes" and a new look for the Archive Portal-D

Actually, it was supposed to be "only" 36 months - then Corona came along, including bridging periods and cost-neutral extensions. And so in the end it turned out to be almost four years. Four years in which a lot has been achieved: In the context of the project, we fundamentally redesigned the portal, adapted it to current viewing habits and improved usability for our users. Our thanks go to our technical operator, FIZ Karlsruhe, which has made a significant contribution to this task from its own funds.

The central result of the project is the thematic portal "Weimar Republic". In the thematic portal, you can search for and find archival records from a wide range of archives using thematic keywords. The selection ranges from A, as in "Assembly member", to Z, as in "Zoological Garden", and covers all political fields and areas of life in the period from 1918/19 to 1933. Try it out and discover archival material in the thematic portal!

"Georg looking for Easter eggs" (27 March 1932), from the Willi Pragher photo collection in the State archives of Baden-Württemberg - this and many other archival documents can be found in the "Weimar Republic" thematic portal (CC BY 3.0 DE)

Participate and design new thematic portals

The new thematic portal "Weimar Republic" lays the technical foundation for further thematic portals. This is where the archives are in demand: They are planning - perhaps even across institutions - for example, a digitisation project on a certain topic that they would like to prepare thematically, or a virtual consolidation of holdings with other archives? Make your project results available to the public in a topic portal in the Archive Portal-D! This means you don't have to build your own platform for your project, you can make your results centrally accessible in Archive Portal-D.

If you have any questions about participating in Archive Portal-D and the "Weimar Republic" theme portal, please write to us at apd-themenportale [at]


Das Archivportal-D Schlagworttool: Mit diesem Werkzeug können Archivalien für Themenportale aufbereitet werden.
The Archive Portal-D Keyword Tool: This tool can be used to prepare archival records for thematic portals.

New stimuli for the archive community

With the results of the project, we have gained a number of new insights in the field of "AI-assisted indexing" and scanned the opportunities and limits of the technology. In our experience, the machine "intellectual" transfer of indexing information into more abstract keywords remains a challenge that can only be addressed with considerable effort, such as the creation of complex knowledge graphs. On the other hand, simpler procedures, such as the recognition of certain keywords, can already be used in principle for German-language indexing information.

For the simple preparation of indexing data in the thematic portal, the Archive Portal-D keyword tool was developed as part of the project. The keywording done there can also be downloaded and later used by the archives in their original systems.

Last but not least, the Archive Portal-D with the thematic portals will also become a central building block in the archival task area "Transformation of Restitution". Based on the thematic portal "Weimar Republic", a new thematic portal "Reparation of National Socialist Injustice" will provide archival material and information on this important subject of German post-war history. More information on the new area of responsibility will be available here in the course of the next weeks and months.

Alte Hasen kennen es noch: So sah das Archivportal-D vor dem Relaunch im Oktober 2020 aus. Mit den neuen Themenportalen und dem neuen Design ist auch mehr Dynamik in die Webseite gekommen.
Old hands still know it: This is how the Archive Portal-D looked before the relaunch in October 2020. With the new theme portals and the new design, the website has also become more dynamic.

Click here for the Archive Portal-D

And here you can access the Weimar Republic thematic portal