Born in Brandenburg, Helmut Silchmüller (1906 – 1980) initially ran a photographic shop in Heidelberg for a short time after his training to become an optician and a photographer in Halle, Jena and Leipzig. From 1934 to 1970, he and his wife Bettina operated a photo studio in the Schwabing quarter of Munich.
His images, which were later partly marketed as postcards by Silchmüller, predominantly show landscapes, buildings and street views of Munich and of mountain tours and trips around Bavaria, Austria and Italy from the time between around 1938 and 1960. In addition, Silchmüller documented his shop on various occasions.
The archive comprises around 1,200 negatives and over 1,000 prints. The Bayerische Staatsbibliothek acquired it from family ownership in 2010.
A further approximately 800 negatives from Helmut Silchmüller with motifs of Munich from the 1930s and 1940s are maintained by the Munich City Museum today.
The archive has been digitized and catalogued in its entirety.