Guide to the Christel and Piltti Heiskanen collection of Carl Zuckmayer, circa 1950 - 2001Manuscript MS-1217

Full Finding Aid


Guide to the Christel and Piltti Heiskanen collection of Carl Zuckmayer, circa 1950 - 2001

Call Number:

Manuscript MS-1217

Collection Dates:

Circa 1950 - 2001

Size of Collection:

1 box (.50 linear ft.)


Carl Zuckmayer (1896-1977), writer and playwright. The collection contains the manuscript "Northern Lights" by Carl Zuckmayer, newspaper clippings, correspondence, writings, playbills, programs, a photograph of Alice Zuckmayer and ephemeral items collected by Christine and Piltti Heiskanen.

Access to Collection:


Use & Access

The materials represented in this guide may be accessed through the Rauner Special Collections Library at Dartmouth College. Rauner Library is located in Webster Hall. The materials must be used on-site and may not leave Rauner Library.

Rauner Special Collections Library is open to the public and in most cases no appointment is necessary. The exception is in the case of materials stored off site for which there may be a delay of up to 48 hours in retrieval. Please consult the Access to Collection statement below or contact Rauner Reference.

Access to Collection


Publication and Use

Permission from Dartmouth College required for publication or reproduction.

Introduction to the Collection

The Christine and Piltti Heiskanen collection of Carl Zuckmayer contains a manuscript, "Northern Lights" by Carl Zuckmayer, newspaper clippings, writings, playbills, programs, correspondence, a photograph of Alice Zuckmayer and personal ephemera collected by Christine and Piltti Heiskanen. The manuscript is in English, but the majority of the material is in German.


Carl Zuckmayer was born on Dec. 27, 1896. He volunteered during World War I after which he began his studies at universities in Frankfurt and Heidelberg. In 1924, he became a dramaturge with Berthold Brecht at the "Deutsche Theater" in Berlin. His first success came with the play "Der froehliche Weinberg" [The Merry Vineyard] in 1925. "Schindehannes," "Katharina Knie," and the screenplay for "The Blue Angel" with Marlene Dietrich followed in 1928. His biggest success came in 1930, with the satirical play "Der Hauptman von Koepenick." Zuckmayer left Nazi Germany in 1933, after his plays were no longer allowed to be performed. He moved to Austria, but after the annexation and the seizure of his house he fled, via Switzerland and Cuba, to the United States, where he worked in Hollywood for a while before settling on a farm in Barnard, Vermont.

In 1943-44 he wrote "character portraits" of actors, writers and other artists in Germany for the Office of Strategic Services, evaluating their involvement with the Nazi regime. In January 1946, after World War II, Zuckmayer was granted US citizenship and returned to Germany where he traveled the country for five months as a US cultural attache;. The resulting report to the War Department was first published in Germany in 2004 ("Deutschlandbericht"). His play "Des Teufels General" ["The Devil's General"] which he had written in Vermont, premiered in Zurich on December 14, 1946. The play became a success in post-war Germany; one of the first post-war literary attempts to broach the issue of Nazism.

Zuckmayer continued to write successful plays but after having shuttled back and forth between the U.S. and Europe for several years, the Zuckmayers left the U.S. in 1958, and settled in Saas Fee in the Valais in Switzerland. In 1966, he became a Swiss citizen, and he published his memoirs entitled "Als war's ein Stuck von mir" ["A part of myself"]. Zuckmayer died on January 18, 1977.

Box & Folder List

Box: 1, Dates: circa 1950-2001

Access Restrictions


Box Contents

  • Folder: 1, "Northern Light" by Carl Zuckmayer, translated by Willem van Loon, typescript, carbon, undated
  • Folder: 2, "Liccie allein-aber doch nicht allein" [Liccie alone-but not alone] by Christine Heiskanen, typescript , undated
  • Folder: 3, "Die Sterne sind geblieben" [Portrait of a friendship with Alice and Carl Zuckmayer], clipping and artwork , 1990s
  • Folder: 4, Writings by Carl Zuckmayer with dedications to the Heiskanens, 1960s-1970s
  • Folder: 5 , Postcards of "Wiesmuehl," the Zuckmayer's home before the war, 1990s
  • Folder: 6 , Alice Zuckmayer: Obituary, photograph, silhouette and program for her 100th birthday, 1951-2001
  • Folder: 7 , Program for Circus Krone/Knie, 1950s
  • Folder: 8 , Programs for Zuckmayer retrospectives in Germany, 1986-1997
  • Folder: 9 , Playbills for Zuckmayer plays in German and Finnish, 1970s
  • Folder: 10 , Correspondence: Christel and Pilttie Heiskanen, 1980-1998
  • Folder: 11, Correspondence: Alice Zuckmayer to Christel and Piltti Heiskanen, 1977-1985
  • Folder: 12, Correspondence: Carl Zuckmayer Gesellschaft [Society], 1986
  • Folder: 13, Photographs: Carl and Alice Zuckmayer with the Heiskanens, annotated, 1940s-1970s
  • Folder: 14, Newspaper clippings in English, 1970-1982
  • Folder: 15 , Newspaper clippings in German, 1966-1996
  • Folder: 16, Miscellaneous, undated

Finding Aids