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Emil Kemeny Collection Relating to the Lindbergh Kidnapping

An inventory of the collection at Syracuse University

Finding aid created by: KS
Date: Jun 1971

Biographical History

Emil Kemeny was an Essex County courthouse interpreter who assisted in processing the voluminous correspondence generated by the kidnapping of the infant son of noted aviator Charles Lindbergh in March, 1932, and the discovery of the baby's body two months later. A Hungarian who became a naturalized U.S. citizen, Kemeny also served as the interpreter for Bruno Hauptmann, who was convicted of the crime in 1934.

Scope and Contents of the Collection

The Emil Kemeny Collection Relating to the Lindbergh Kidnapping consits of letters, envelopes, personal records, and assorted memorabilia about the Lindbergh case.

Kemeny and his associates read thousands of incoming Letters from all over the world in the search for clues; with very few exceptions, the letters express sympathy and horror. Many of the German writers urged the Lindberghs to make their home in Germany, since (they said) no German would be inclined to commit such a crime. Others offered professional assistance or simply their prayers and best wishes. Associated Envelopes represent more than fourteen countries.

Miscellany consists of photographs and newspaper clippings related to the case.

A small collection of Personal records (letters) completes the collection.

Arrangement of the Collection

Letters are arranged alphabetically by country, as are Envelopes. Miscellany is alphabetical by type of material. Personal records are arranged chronologically.


Access Restrictions:

The majority of our archival and manuscript collections are housed offsite and require advanced notice for retrieval. Researchers are encouraged to contact us in advance concerning the collection material they wish to access for their research.

Use Restrictions:

Written permission must be obtained from SCRC and all relevant rights holders before publishing quotations, excerpts or images from any materials in this collection.

Subject Headings


Kemeny, Emil.
Lindbergh, Charles A. (Charles Augustus), 1902-1974.


Lindbergh, Charles Augustus, 1930-1932 -- Kidnapping, 1932.
Trials (Kidnapping) -- New Jersey.
Trials (Murder) -- New Jersey.

Genres and Forms

Clippings (information artifacts)
Letters (correspondence)



Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Preferred citation for this material is as follows:

Emil Kemeny Collection Relating to the Lindbergh Kidnapping,
Special Collections Research Center,
Syracuse University Libraries

Acquisition Information

Gift of Milton M. Kemeny, 1970.

Table of Contents




Personal records