Archive for German Polar Research (AGPR)

About the AGPR

The mission of the AGPR is to secure the written and oral tradition of German polar and maritime research, a 150-year-old scientific venture with deep roots in the federal state of Bremen. Founded in 2011, the AGPR archives records and other material of this research field following Bremen archive law. Although these activities refer to all of the historical and present German states and state resembling bodies, their main focus concentrates on the AWI.

The archive - as a part of the institute's library - provides science journalists, laypersons and scientist of all disciplines within as well as beyond AWI with historical information on German polar and maritime research. The same task it performs with regard to the institute.

The AGPR also supports a historically informed public discussion about German polar and maritime research and about the AWI, and it promotes the identification of the AWI's employees with the institute. Furthermore, it carries out small research projects.


Head Archivist

Dr. Christian Salewski, Dipl.-Arch.

Am Alten Hafen 26

27568 Bremerhaven

E-Mail: archive[at]

Phone: +49 471 4831-2273

Fax: +49 471 4831-2342

Using the Archive

Who may use the Archive?

Everybody who can demonstrate a legitimate interest is entitled to use the archive, e. g. scientists, science journalists or laypersons.

Further Information

Information and Knowledge Ressources



Call: The AdP asks all polar and marine researchers and all institute staff to hand over to it their old documents and material related to their work and/or with reference to the AWI.


AGPR's online research engine: Users can now obtain information about more than 50 archival groups, personal papers of German polar researchers and collections. Detailed descriptions of these holdings can be looked up at the AGPR online search at "Register/Bestandsbeschreibung". Moreover, they can there search for approx. 2,100 data sets, containing more details of the contents of holdings on a document level.

Although written in German, these descriptions can give English readers with some knowlegde of German a greater insight in the contents of the AGPR.


The AdP publishes 2nd edition of the AWI chronicle: After a short time the archive has just published the 2nd edition of the synopsis of the historical development of polar research and the AWI. In addition to a comprehensive history of polar research since the 16th century and the 40-year history of the Institute, the text now also offers readers an overview of the Institute's activities completed in 2020 under the auspices of the corona pandemic, such as the MOSAiC expedition.

The chronicle is published in German under the title ""Das Alfred-Wegener-Institut in der Geschichte der Polarforschung. Eine Einführung und Chronik, 2., überarbeitete und erweiterte Auflage" as volume 748 of the Reports on Polar and Marine Research.