Museum für Völkerkunde Hamburg
Amulette und Zauberbücher aus den Sammlungen des Hexenarchivs; Foto: Brigitte Saal

Witch Archiv

The witch archive was founded by the Museum für Völkerkunde in 1978. It is based on the collection of Johann Kruse (1889 – 1983), an elementary school teacher and researcher in the field of witchcraft. Kruse explored and documented the belief in witchcraft in Northern Germany as investigator and self-appointed “witches’ advocate”.
This collection of press-clippings, scripts and artefacts denouncing witchcraft continues to grow. By establishing a witch archive, the Museum für Völkerkunde aims to contribute to a more balanced picture of “witches” and other belief systems that rely on supernatural powers. The witch archive serves as a forum for the exchange of information and for research in witch-related topics.

The main focus of the collection’s content can be clearly seen in the documents collected by Kruse about contemporary belief in witchcraft. The collection is further expanded by a selection of books referring to witch hunting in the early modern period. Current trends and views in the field of the New Witches as well as manifestations of the belief in witchcraft worldwide are included in the archive.

Currently, extensive restructuring of the inventory is planned.


Dr. Jeanette Kokott
Head of the Oceania department
phone: 040. 428 879- 536
fax: 040. 428 879- 242