News |Original editions for the Thomas Mann House

Marianne Heuwagen, Monika Grütters and Wolf von Lojewksi | Photo: Dirk Bleicker

Berlin, October 8, 2018Wolf von Lojewski, longtime US correspondent and host of the ZDF German Television’s prestigious news program heute-journal, bestows his valuable collection of Thomas Mann first editions to the Thomas Mann House. Lojewski, 81 years old and avowed fan of the Nobel Laureate in Literature, has spent many decades in his professional career browsing through bookstores around the world and compiling his 55-volume collection. It contains numerous first editions, some with marginal notes or personal dedications by Thomas Mann, including one to Hollywood agent Paul Kohner.

"I am delighted that the books have found such a worthy location and, above all, that they will stay together," says Wolf von Lojewski, "They've gotten used to each other over the years". The first volumes were handed over last Monday evening as part of the "Villa Aurora & Thomas Mann House-Night" at the Komische Oper, the Berlin-based organization’s annual showcase. Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media Monika Grütters and the Deputy Chair of the association, Marianne Heuwagen, accepted the books on behalf of the Thomas Mann House.

The Thomas Mann House in Pacific Palisades, a district of Los Angeles where the "Great Magician" lived in exile from 1942 to 1952, was inaugurated by Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier in June 2018 and serves as a place for transatlantic encounters and research. The completely renovated building is administered by the non-profit organization Villa Aurora & Thomas Mann House e. V., together with Villa Aurora, the former home of Lion Feuchtwanger. Villa Aurora is an artists residence and cultural monument to German exile.

In Thomas Mann’s former study, the organization commemorates the Nobel laureate and attempts to recreate the library compiled by Thomas Mann Thomas until his return to Europe. Thanks to a generous donation from the Berthold Leibinger Foundation, around 600 antiquarian volumes have already been acquired. "The collection of Wolf von Lojewski is a wonderful addition to our portfolio," says board member Marianne Heuwagen, "and helps to restore the old aura of the place".

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