Portrait of Karl Loewenstein, no date

From the Amherst College Archives and Special Collections Amherst, MA Karl Loewenstein was born in Munich, Germany, on November 9, 1891, son of a metalware manufacturer and grandson of a Stuttgart jurist. First guided by his parents toward a career in business, Loewenstein turned to the study of law at age nineteen. He attended the universities…Continue Reading Biography


One of Karl Loewenstein’s main tasks while working under the U.S. Military Government was to remove Nazi influence from German government and society. This process became known as denazification.  As a legal consultant, he assisted in the drafting of denazification laws. Loewenstein’s diary reveals his anxiety regarding the many challenges that he and OMGUS officials…Continue Reading Denazification


Evaluating a Cold War Enemy Through private meetings with Dr. Eugen Schiffer, head of the Soviet Zone Administration of Justice, Loewenstein gained insight into what was happening in East Berlin. He concluded that the U.S. should seek greater cooperation with the Soviets. Despite the U.S. tendency to create a negative image of the Communists, Loewenstein…Continue Reading Bureaucracy


                        In addition to his work on denazification, Karl Loewenstein participated in the redrafting of German laws. Unlike many of his colleagues, Loewenstein disputed the notion that the entire Nazi legal code was useless. He believed that many of the non-racist Nazi laws were…Continue Reading Legislation


May 8th, 1945 Official end of the war in Europe   July 17th, 1945 Potsdam Conference Begins   August 2nd, 1945 Potsdam Conference ends, Germany officially divided into four zones of occupation.   August 1945 Karl Löwenstien arrives in Germany to work as a legal analyst for the US Military Governement.   November 20th, 1945…Continue Reading Timeline