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Nuremburg Trial Collection

Identifier: MNUR

Scope and Contents

The Nuremburg Trial Collection consists of documents dated 1944 to 1947. Materials were assembled by Bill Martin who served as part of the 6850th Internal Security Detachment, U.S. Army, which was responsible for the security of the court and the defendants during the initial trial known as the Trial of Major War Criminals.

The bulk of the collection consists of documents and related materials regarding the International Military Tribunal, more commonly known as the Nuremburg Trials. Materials include two copies of the official transcript, a list of participants, military papers, a copy of the book Nurnburg, and newspaper clippings. Of note is a scrapbook of photographs taken during the trial which show the justices, courtroom and the defendants. Also included in the collection are a couple of miscellaneous files, including school work most like by Bill Martin based on his experiences at the Trials and in World War II and photographs and postcards of a few European cities during World War II.


  • Creation: 1944-1947


Restrictions on Access

There are no access restrictions on this collection.

Restrictions on Use

Not all of the material in the collection is in the public domain. Researchers are responsible for addressing copyright issues.


Held for the purpose of bringing accused Nazi war criminals to justice, the Nuremberg trials were a series of thirteen trials carried out in Nuremberg, Germany, between 1945 and 1949. The defendants, who included Nazi Party officials and high-ranking military officers along with German industrialists, lawyers, and doctors, were indicted on such charges as crimes against peace and crimes against humanity.

In December 1942, the Allied leaders of Great Britain, the United States and the Soviet Union "issued the first joint declaration officially noting the mass murder of European Jewry and resolving to prosecute those responsible for violence against civilian populations." A group of four powers (France, Britain, the Soviet Union and the United States) eventually established the laws and procedures for the Nuremberg trials with the London Charter of the International Military Tribunal (IMT), issued on August 8, 1945. Among other things, the charter defined three categories of crimes: crimes against peace (including planning, preparing, starting, or waging wars of aggression or wars in violation of international agreements), war crimes (including violations of customs or laws of war, including improper treatment of civilians and prisoners of war), and crimes against humanity (including murder, enslavement or deportation of civilians or persecution on political, religious or racial grounds). It was determined that civilian officials as well as military officers could be accused of war crimes. The city of Nuremberg (also known as Nurnberg) in the German state of Bavaria was selected as the location for the trials, at the Palace of Justice.

The best-known of the Nuremberg trials was the Trial of Major War Criminals, held from November 20, 1945, to October 1, 1946. The format of the trial was a mix of legal traditions: There were prosecutors and defense attorneys according to British and American law, but the decisions and sentences were imposed by a tribunal (panel of judges) rather than a single judge and a jury. The chief American prosecutor was Robert H. Jackson, an associate justice of the U.S. Supreme Court. Each of the four Allied powers supplied two judges--a main judge and an alternate.

Twenty-four individuals were indicted, along with six Nazi organizations determined to be criminal. As the accused men and judges spoke four different languages, the trial saw the introduction of a new technology, instantaneous translation. IBM provided the technology and recruited men and women from international telephone exchanges to provide on-the-spot translations through headphones in English, French, German and Russian. The international tribunal found all but three of the defendants guilty. Twelve were sentenced to death, one in absentia, and the rest were given prison sentences ranging from ten years to life behind bars.

Following the Trial of Major War Criminals, there were twelve additional trials held at Nuremberg. These proceedings, lasting from December 1946 to April 1949, are grouped together as the Subsequent Nuremberg Proceedings. They differed from the first trial in that they were conducted before U.S. military tribunals rather than the international tribunal that decided the fate of the major Nazi leaders. The reason for the change was that growing differences among the four Allied powers had made other joint trials impossible. The subsequent trials were held in the same location at the Palace of Justice in Nuremberg.

Historical information taken from:


4 linear feet (3 flat boxes)

Language of Materials



This collection contains materials regarding the International Military Tribunal, more commonly known as the Nuremburg Trials, assembled by Bill Martin. Martin was assigned to the 6850th Internal Security Detachment, U.S. Army, which was responsible for the security of the court and the defendants. Materials include two copies of the Official Transcript of the International Military Tribunal, a list of participants, military papers, newspaper clippings regarding the trial, and a scrapbook of photographs taken during the trial of all involved.


Upon receipt, materials were in no discernable order and rearranged during rehousing.

The collection consists of two series in three flat boxes:

Series 1: Nuremburg Trials, 1945-1947 and undated

Series 2: Miscellany, 1944 and undated


The Nuremburg Trial Collection was donated by Greg Smoak on May 21, 2008.


Processing was completed in August 2014. Materials were rehoused in acid-free folders and boxes. Paper clips and rubber bands were removed. Fragile items were rehoused in specially created boxes.

Inventory Note

Note: Title information supplied by the archivist is bracketed.

Guide to the Nuremburg Trial Collection
Edited Full Draft
Prepared by Karen Spilman
Copyright 2014
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English.

Repository Details

Part of the CSU Libraries Archives & Special Collections Repository

Fort Collins Colorado 80523-1019 USA