Showing posts with label Jean Vlug. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Jean Vlug. Show all posts

May 17, 2021

Buried for more than half a century

Altaussee Salt/Art Mine discovery after WW II
Lieutenants Kern & Sieber, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

What must it have been like for Samson Lane Faison, Jr., James S. Plaut, Theodore Rousseau, Jr. and Jean Vlug to watch their reports on Nazi art looting and art dealer networks be buried and lost?

The ALIU reports contained names, dates, places, specific events, artworks - crucial information for tracking down looted art. 

All classified. Hidden away. Inaccessible. Unknown. Unexplored.

What lesson could these museum men possibly have learned from Washington's treatment of their historic work?

When, in 2001, the reports were to be published on microfiche, Dr. Greg Bradsher contacted S. Lane Faison, to tell him the news that their work would finally be public and to ask permission to give Faison's phone number to journalists who might want to know more. Bradsher described the conversation in a blog post for the National Archives:

On April 23, 2001, I phoned Professor Faison and told him the National Archives was issuing the next day a press release announcing the release of Microfilm Publication M-1782, “OSS Art Looting Investigation Unit Reports, 1945-46.”  I told him the microfilmed records—including the detailed, consolidated, and final reports—were being made available on May 8, the 56th anniversary of the U.S. Army’s discovery of the salt mine at Alt Aussee, Austria, where the greatest concentration of Nazi plunder from Western Europe was concealed.  I asked him if he minded me making his phone number available if I received press inquiries about the records and the work of the ALIU.  He said at his age it was tough enough to get up to change the television channel, much less answer the phone regarding things he had done ages ago and which were well-documented in the records we were making available. So, yes, he did mind.

-  "An Office of Strategic Services Monuments Man: S. Lane Faison"

 This is the seventh in an ongoing series of posts on real-life Monuments Men. Today’s post is by Dr. Greg Bradsher. See related posts on Sir Charles Leonard WoolleyWalter J. HuchthausenSeymour J. PomrenzeMason HammondEdith Standen, and Karol Estreicher. 

Oct 2, 2019

Vlug Report: transcription of Part 1


The Vlug Report, written in December of 1945 and named after its author, the Dutch art historian Jean Vlug, is an important work of investigation into the massive looting of artworks in Holland during World War II.

The Vlug report details the activities of the Dienststelle Mühlmann, which obtained works of art for Hitler, Göring and other Nazis.
The author was Jean Vlug, who served in the Royal Netherlands Army. He was a Dutch "Monuments Men" and investigator with the Art Looting Investigation Unit. His report, marked confidential and unavailable for decades, contains interviews with Nazi art looters as well of lists of artworks.
The following transcription concerns the first fifty pages of Vlug's report. The transcription is a work in progress. Please indicate any errors in the comments. Thank you.
For more information about the Vlug report, please see
The National Archives have published photographs of the Vlug report online at Fold3.
The photo above is from The Monuments Men Foundation website which honors Jan Vlug and requests more information about him.