Sample folder German passports of the Third Reich

Sample folder German passports

It is very unusual to find a folder full of print samples of Third Reich travel documents nowadays. The shown folder once belonged to a retired German immigration officer whose heritage was sold off. Such folders were made by the government printing office for training purposes and given to immigration, border control, and police, including GESTAPO or customs. I unclear why a retired immigration officer had such a folder in his private possession. It would be not unusual that government offices cleaned up their archives to dispose of such old documents over time, and this official saved such a folder. I experienced a similar story with sample folders from the German Democratic Republic (GDR) when a former East German criminal police officer contacted me years ago. His wife was working in the GDR interior department, saving a dozen binders from scrapping. I was lucky to get them all.

The federal printing house stands for more than 250 years of German contemporary history. The origins of the company go back to the 18th century. Since 1763, production in Berlin has been commissioned by the state. In 1763, Georg Jacob Decker received the privilege from Frederick II, King of Prussia, to carry out all printing orders for the court. This creates the first predecessor company of Bundesdruckerei, the Geheime Ober-Hofbuchdruckerei.

In 1851 the Königlich-Preußische Staatsdruckerei is founded in Berlin as the first state-owned printing works. Its main purpose is to print banknotes, securities, and postage stamps. Sample folder German passports

During the National Socialist era, the Reichsdruckerei printed, among other things, identity cards, which were introduced as domestic identity cards and marked with a capital “J” for Jews. It also printed camp money for the Oranienburg concentration camp.

After the Federal Republic of Germany was founded on 23 May 1949, it was decided in 1951 that the Staatsdruckerei Berlin would be integrated into the administrative structures of the Federal Republic of Germany and given the new name Bundesdruckerei.

Interesting fact. The Berlin Wall is built. It runs directly behind the entrance to Kommandantenstraße of the Bundesdruckerei. 81 employees cannot come to work overnight. Sample folder German passports

The Bundesdruckerei has been producing the “Passport 3.0” since 1 March 2017. In addition to the move away from the previous hardcover to a flexible, pliable cover, the extensive design changes include the abolition of the laminated data page in favor of an all-plastic card made of polycarbonate. The new passport also contains numerous new security features and graphics innovations.

The Passport Folder

A total of nine documents are included in the folder. The documents are fixed to the binder and can not be removed.

  • Standard passport
  • Service passport
  • Departmental passport (Ministerialpass)
  • Diplomatic passport
  • Alien passport
  • Nansen pass
  • Children pass
  • Form “Return to the Reich” (red)
  • Form “Return to the Reich” (green)

I understand the purpose of the last two forms but I never saw them in reality. The difference between the red and the green paper “Return form” is, that the red form can be used only at certain borders, while the green one is valid for any borders. Sample folder German passports

Sample folder German passports

Sample folder German passports