Information on war children is found in several archives. Approximately 10-12,000 children were born by a German father and a Norwegian mother during or just after World War II.
The National Archives in Oslo and the regional state archives investigate what information is available in their respective records and give advice on other sources that may hold pertinent data, such as the County Commissioner's Office or municipal child support services departments.
The Lebensborn Archives from the German-run Lebensborn homes contain index cards on birthmothers and the Germans reported as fathers, as well as records of any additional information. This institution was in charge of the war children during World War II. Some 8000 war children cases were filed with Lebensborn before the war ended. The institution's records are preserved in the National Archives.
German case files for cases that were dropped for various reasons during the war are kept in the National Archives. Cases were dismissed, e.g. because the parents got married during the war, the child was adopted away, or due to other causes.
Records from the authorities' processing of war children cases in the postwar period, including their efforts at tracking down war children that were sent to Germany during the war, are preserved in the National Archives.
Series of case files on individual children from the Lebensborn Archives are on file in some regional state archives or with the relevant County Governors. The majority of the case files were removed from the central Lebensborn Archive in 1950 and sent to the relevant County Governors. Some County Governors have deposited these archival series with their respective regional state archives.
In such cases, we recommend contacting the National Archives in Oslo first. Name and birth date of mother, father and child are important data with regard to the possible identification of further information.
We only give out information to the person in question, or to an agent authorized by this individual.
You can also obtain assistance with finding information by contacting:
Norges Røde Kors (Red Cross of Norway)
Postboks 1 Grønland,
Phone: +47 05003
Fax: +47 22 05 40 40
You may also authorize the Red Cross of Norway to collect information from Norwegian archives on your behalf. The Red Cross can also seek to track down birthfathers or other relatives in Germany/Austria.