The following travel document is a unique, beautiful identification paper I have never seen before! Danzig Diplomatic Senate Passport
This SENATE PASSPORT (Senatspass) of the Free City of Danzig was used as a diplomatic passport issued Hans-Richard Hirschfeld, a government counselor, commissioner, later diplomat, and vice-consul in New York and Switzerland. When this Senate passport was issued in 1935, Hirschfeld was already working for a few years in the Presidential Department of the Gdansk Senate.
As the son of the landowner
Feodor Hirschfeld and his wife, Emma née Schwerdtfeger, Hirschfeld attended the Realgymnasium in Rendsburg. During his military service from June 20 to December 7, 1918, he graduated from high school on September 23, 1918. He studied law and political science at the Christian-Albrechts-University of Kiel, the University of Jena, and the New Hamburg. From 1920 he was a member of the Corps Thuringia Jena. After his referential exam on May 26, 1923, he worked from June 1923 to January 1924 at the ship and cargo control of the Hamburg-America Line from January May 1924 as a sailor.
Until mid-December 1924, he was a construction worker in New York. On November 14, 1925, he joined the Justice and Administrative Service of the Free State of Prussia, and on December 22, 1925, the Free City of Gdansk.
After his assessor’s examination on January 29, 1930, he was in the Foreign Department from November 1, 1930, to May 31, 1931, and from July 17, 1932, to August 30, 1936, and in the Presidential Department of the Senate of Danzig from June 1, 1931, to July 16, 1932. On November 1, 1932, he became a member of the Government Council. Danzig Diplomatic Senate Passport
What a career! From sailor to a construction worker and government council member to diplomat and vice-consul and even ambassador in Federal Germany after WWII! Danzig Diplomatic Senate Passport
On February 27, 1936,
he was drafted into the Foreign Service. On May 1, 1936, he joined the NSDAP. Initially an attaché in the legal department of the Foreign Office, Hirschberg was sent to the Consulate General in New York on October 3, 1936. In May 1938, he became vice-consul, and in December 1940, consul.
After the German consular authorities in the USA had been closed in June 1941, he was entrusted with provisional tasks in the Foreign Office (personnel, administration, organization, foreign propaganda).
On September 12, 1941, he was sent to the Legation Council of Bern in October 1943. Since June 27, 1944, Counsellor I. From June 1 to November 1, 1945, he was with the Federal Political Department, German Representation of Interests in Basel.
After returning to Germany,
he worked as a freelancer. He was denazified in November 1947. From May 3, 1948, to June 29, 1950, he worked at the Schenefeld District Office (District of Steinburg) as a civil servant and head of the housing office. On June 14, 1950, he was reassigned to the Foreign Service, which was initially a department of the Federal Chancellery; it was not until March 1951 that the Foreign Office was re-established.
From the end of 1951, Hirschfeld headed the Department of Private International Law and Civil Law, and from January 1952, he was a lecturer to the Legation Council. Danzig Diplomatic Senate Passport
On September 21, 1953, he took over the management of the re-established Consulate General in Antwerp. On November 2, 1956, he was appointed Ambassador in Reykjavík and remained in Iceland until October 17, 1964, retiring on May 25, 1964. Hans-Richard Hirschfeld was born on 26. Oktober 1900 in Aasbüttel and died on 28. Juni 1988 in Remagen-Oberwinter, he was 88 years old.
The Passport Danzig Diplomatic Senate Passport
As mentioned earlier, this is the first time this type of SENATE PASSPORT has been displayed! A beautiful document and significant for passport history in general. Every passport collector would love to have this document in their collection. Many thanks to my fellow US collector, who bought this outstanding document to my attention.
I talked to Helmut Weitze – Military Antiques, who sold this exceptional document and provided me with the pictures you see here. I am very grateful for this support. If you collect Militaria, then make sure to visit their website with fantastic collectibles. Congratulations to the collector who got this precious document into his collection!Danzig Diplomatic Senate Passport
FAQ Passport History
Passport collection, passport renewal, old passports for sale, vintage passport, emergency passport renewal, same day passport, passport application, pasaporte passeport паспорт 护照 パスポート جواز سفر पासपोर्ट
1. What are the earliest known examples of passports, and how have they evolved?
The word "passport" came up only in the mid 15th Century. Before that, such documents were safe conducts, recommendations or protection letters. On a practical aspect, the earliest passport I have seen was from the mid 16th Century. Read more...
2. Are there any notable historical figures or personalities whose passports are highly sought after by collectors?
Every collector is doing well to define his collection focus, and yes, there are collectors looking for Celebrity passports and travel documents of historical figures like Winston Churchill, Brothers Grimm, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. Read more...
3. How did passport designs and security features change throughout different periods in history, and what impact did these changes have on forgery prevention?
"Passports" before the 18th Century had a pure functional character. Security features were, in the best case, a watermark and a wax seal. Forgery, back then, was not an issue like it is nowadays. Only from the 1980s on, security features became a thing. A state-of-the-art passport nowadays has dozens of security features - visible and invisible. Some are known only by the security document printer itself. Read more...
4. What are some of the rarest and most valuable historical passports that have ever been sold or auctioned?
Lou Gehrig, Victor Tsoi, Marilyn Monroe, James Joyce, and Albert Einstein when it comes to the most expensive ones. Read more...
5. How do diplomatic passports differ from regular passports, and what makes them significant to collectors?
Such documents were often held by officials in high ranks, like ambassadors, consuls or special envoys. Furthermore, these travel documents are often frequently traveled. Hence, they hold a tapestry of stamps or visas. Partly from unusual places.
6. Can you provide insights into the stories behind specific historical passports that offer unique insights into past travel and migration trends?
7. What role did passports play during significant historical events, such as wartime travel restrictions or international treaties?
During war, a passport could have been a matter of life or death. Especially, when we are looking into WWII and the Holocaust. And yes, during that time, passports and similar documents were often forged to escape and save lives. Example...
8. How has the emergence of digital passports and biometric identification impacted the world of passport collecting?
Current modern passports having now often a sparkling, flashy design. This has mainly two reasons. 1. Improved security and 2. Displaying a countries' heritage, icons, and important figures or achievements. I can fully understand that those modern documents are wanted, especially by younger collectors.
9. Are there any specialized collections of passports, such as those from a specific country, era, or distinguished individuals?
Yes, the University of Western Sidney Library has e.g. a passport collection of the former prime minister Hon Edward Gough Whitlam and his wife Margaret. They are all diplomatic passports and I had the pleasure to apprise them. I hold e.g. a collection of almost all types of the German Empire passports (only 2 types are still missing). Also, my East German passport collection is quite extensive with pretty rare passport types.
10. Where can passport collectors find reliable resources and reputable sellers to expand their collection and learn more about passport history?
A good start is eBay, Delcampe, flea markets, garage or estate sales. The more significant travel documents you probably find at the classic auction houses. Sometimes I also offer documents from my archive/collection. See offers... As you are already here, you surely found a great source on the topic 😉
11. Is vintage passport collecting legal? What are the regulations and considerations collectors should know when acquiring historical passports?
First, it's important to stress that each country has its own laws when it comes to passports. Collecting old vintage passports for historical or educational reasons is safe and legal, or at least tolerated. More details on the legal aspects are here...
Does this article spark your curiosity about passport collecting and the history of passports? With this valuable information, you have a good basis to start your own passport collection.
Question? Contact me...