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The Digital Picture Archives of the Federal Archives

Maintenance on June 26, 8:00 to 10:00 CET!
Registration and order and download of pictures from the Digital Picture Archives of the Federal Archives and the Press- and Information Office of the Federal Government (BPA) is due to maintenance procedures on June 26, between 8:00 CET and 10:00 CET not available.
We apologize for any inconvenience!

The Federal Archives keeps approx. 12 million still pictures, aerial photographs and posters from modern German history. First photographs date from the 1860ties. Most pictures show events and/or persons, in particular from the

  • Weimar Republic (1919-1933; among others Group "Bild 102 Aktuelle-Bilder-Centrale, Georg Pahl")
  • Nazi Reich (1933-1945; especially war pictures taken by propaganda companies of the German army (Wehrmacht, Group "Bild 101")
  • GDR (1945/49-1990; among others pictures of the central press agency (Group "Bild 183 Allgemeiner Deutscher Nachrichtendienst ADN - Zentralbild") and "everyday photography" ("Bild 226 Vorlass Hans Martin Sewcz", "N 1648 Bild Sammlung Beier")
  • Federal Republic of Germany (from 1945/49 onwards; among others Group "B 145 Bild Federal Press and Information Office")

As of now, about 245,000 pictures representing the variety of available images in the Federal Archives (Bundesarchiv) are kept in the database. Since November 2008 also photos of the Federal Press and Information Office (Bundespresseamt) are integrated in this databae.

Terms of use of the database

You can find these pictures by full-text retrieval, advanced search or research by subject, person or locality (= search by topic).
You may use the data base without registration. Any download of reproducible pictures without water-mark is possible for registered researchers at their cost.
» Registration / Login

Terms of use
[Download: form "request for use" (pdf-file)]
Costs / Fees
[Download: Federal Archives Cost Regulations (only available in german language! "price list"; pdf-file)]

Important notice!
We don't send pictures by e-mail! Please register in our database!

Indications for the registration can be found in the "FAQ".

A compilation of our pictures can be found under the heading »Collections« on the left part of this page, too. You may establish picture collections at your own (»Light box«). Storage of picture collections is possible for registered researchers.

Technical note

For full functionality of the database, JavaScript has to be activated in your browser.

Information that was originally on or with the picture. Hint: The original title is shown to the full extent! Especially pictures from the fonds »Bild 101 Propagandakompanien der Wehrmacht« and »Bild 183 ADN« may contain ideologically influenced or later added texts which sometimes do not correctly describe the pictures content or the original situation. See also »Archive title and »Short title.