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Lost Art

Restbestand CCP (Remaining Stock CCP)

After seizure and registration, the American authorities commenced with the “internal and external restitution” of these works of art. The restitution included all art objects which had been appropriated illegally as a result of persecution, war, and occupation. In 1949, the American authorities transferred this responsibility to the Prime Minister of the Free State of Bavaria. The remaining stock was placed in 1952 under the responsibility of the Federal Government in Bonn, and it was designated as trustee. Within the German Federal Foreign Office, an office was established known as the Treuhandverwaltung für Kulturgut (Trusteeship for the Administration of Cultural Assets), located in Munich.

At the end of 1962, the Treuhandverwaltung für Kulturgut declared its task completed and passed the remaining works of art on to the Ministry of the Treasury. These objects had either been legally acquired and had thus not been subject to any restitution, or were objects for which no other persons entitled to possession could be found.

In the 1960s, the best pieces, including some 1,000 paintings, were given by the Ministry of the Treasury as objects on permanent loan from the German government to German museums. Less valuable items were lent to various federal ministries or other federal government offices for purposes of decoration. Works which could not be used in this manner were sold or remained in the depot. After the Treasury Ministry was dissolved, the remaining objects of art were transferred to the assets of the Federal Ministry of Finance.

The term "Linzer Sammlung" ("Linz Collection") is somewhat misleading because only some of these pieces of art were collected under the so-called "Sonderauftrag Linz" (The "Linz Special Order").

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© Stiftung Deutsches Zentrum Kulturgutverluste - 2021