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Erich L. Riesterer collection

Identifier: L450

Scope and Contents

This collection includes a transcript of an oral memoir in German, documents, and photographs from Erich L. Riesterer ranging from 1900 to 1977 regarding military service with German troops occupying the Ukraine during World War I. The oral interview was conducted by his son, Berthold P. Riesterer, a history professor at Indiana University Purdue University, Indianapolis (IUPUI), during 1975-1977 and transcribed 1976-1977. Notable items also include a German passport (travel pass) and a postcard of "from a small Garrison." The collection also includes 46 cassette tapes with audio from the oral history interviews with Erich Riesterer.


  • circa 1900-1977


Language of Materials

Materials in German and English.

Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Legal title, copyright, and literary rights resides with the creators of the documents or their legal heirs and assigns. All requests to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted to Rare Books and Manuscripts.

Biographical Note

Erich Leopold Trudpert Riesterer was born June 10, 1896 and served as a German soldier during World War I. He immigrated to the United States on October 6, 1923 and lived in Detroit, Michigan, working as a decorative painter specializing in ecclesiastical art. Riesterer married Anna Frederike Menzemer (1898-1978) on January 24, 1925 in Detroit. The couple had one son, Berthold Philip (1935-2018). Erich and his wife Anna moved to Indianapolis, Indiana in the summer of 1967 to be close to his son, Bert, who was a history professor at Indiana University Purdue University, Indianapolis (IUPUI), and his grandchildren. According to biographical information in the collection, he often joked that his first encounter with Indiana came during his military service in the Ukraine, he noticed the words "Gary, Indiana" stamped on the disk wheels of Russian railroad cars. Riesterer died on July 7, 1983 in Indianapolis.


Items from the collection. "Erich L. Riesterer." 1940 United States Federal Census1. Accessed December 29, 2016. "Anna F. Riesterer." Indiana, Death Certificates, 1899-20111. Accessed December 29, 2016. "Erich L. Riesterer." Indiana, Death Certificates, 1899-20111. Accessed December 29, 2016. "Erich L. Riesterer." Michigan, Marriage Records, 1867-19521. Accessed December 29, 2016.

"Berthold P. E. Riesterer." [Obituary.] The Mining Journal (Marquette, MI), February 27, 2018. Accessed September 23, 2020.


0.3 Cubic Feet (1 manuscript box, 1 postcard box)


This collection is arranged by subject

Custodial History

This collection was received by Rare Books and Manuscripts as a donation from Berthold P. and Zita M. Riesterer on 1978/02/07 and Erich L.T. Riesterer on 1978/02/15.


No further additions are expected.

Processing Information

Collection processing completed 2016/11/02 by Kori Nell. EAD finding aid created 2016/11/02 by Kori Nell. EAD finding aid revised 2016/12/28 and 2020/09/23 by Brittany Kropf.
Erich L. Riesterer collection
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Rare Books and Manuscripts Repository

140 North Senate Avenue
Indianapolis, Indiana 46204 U.S.A.