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Alexander Lowenstein Family Papers

An inventory of the papers at the Pan Am Flight 103/Lockerbie Air Disaster Archives at Syracuse University

Finding aid created by: Cara A. Howe
Date: 2014


Lowenstein, Alexander

Alexander Lowenstein (1967-1988) was among the 270 victims of the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland on December 21, 1988. He was one of the 35 Syracuse University students traveling home after a semester abroad. Alexander (also known as Alex or Alexi) was an English major, but hoped to pursue a degree in clinical psychology so he could work in a psychiatric clinic after he graduated. Alex was a brother in the Zeta Psi fraternity at SU and sat on the Inter-fraternity Council.

"Alexander was very special. His ability to fully enjoy life; to make us laugh; to draw his peers to him; to make us love him" his parents recall. Alex was a water person who loved surfing and scuba diving near his parent's home in Montauk on Long Island. He was survived by his parents Suse and Peter and his brother Lucas.

Suse Lowenstein is an accomplished sculptor; her pivotal work Dark Elegy has garnered much acclaim and commentary over the years and has served as a reminder of the evils of terrorism. Dark Elegy is a sculpture garden containing 75 larger than life pieces that depict a woman at the moment she learned her loved one had been killed on Pan Am 103. Each figure was sculpted from life and Suse has even created a sculpture of herself. Dark Elegy is a tribute to all victims of terrorism and Suse hopes to find it a permanent home in a public location where it may be freely accessible.

Scope and Content Note

The Alexander Lowenstein Family Papers contain ten series, some with subseries.

Artwork contains sketches done by Alexander Lowenstein. These items are all undated.

Audiovisual materials includes film and audio recordings, including footage of Alexander Lowenstein surfing and spending time at the beach with his family. Other videos show Alex in a competition at his high school and performing in a show called "Park Place". All video has been converted to DVD. Also included in this series are audio cassettes that belonged to Alexander Lowenstein. Some of these are original albums and others are mix tapes.

Clippings is primarily organized chronologically. Oversize clippings are stored separately and are not in chronological order. Clippings related to Dark Elegy are found in that series.

Correspondence is divided into subseries for Alexander Lowenstein, condolences, general correspondence files and correspondence with people in Lockerbie. The last two subseries are organized alphabetically by correspondent. The subseries for Alex's personal correspondence is organized chronologically as is the subseries for Condolences. Correspondence related to Dark Elegy is found in that series. Many of the letters from people in Lockerbie contain photographs as inserts.

Dark Elegy is arranged alphabetically and deals with the sculpture garden created by Suse Lowenstein. Various exhibitions of Dark Elegy may be studied along with photographs of the work.

Personal objects includes items that belonged to Alex Lowenstein. Items recovered from the crash site at Lockerbie are not included in this series.

Photographs and negatives contains digitized album that was loaned to the Archives by the Lowenstein family for scanning. Photographs of Alexander Lowenstein with his friends and family and on trips to Amsterdam and around London in 1988 are available. Photographs of various memorials dedicated to Alexander may also be found. This series contains a few items of note, including a copy of Senate Resolution 727 signed by Hillary Rodham Clinton. Researchers will also be interested in the maps used to plot locations of victim's bodies as well as Pan Am 103 passenger statistics, which includes a seating chart for the Boeing 747.Any photographs of Dark Elegy are held in that series and photographs that survived the bombing are contained in the Found in wreckage subseries of Subject files.

Subject files consists of topical files of general interest, but is also where the subseries for all materials found in the wreckage is located. All personal papers and items belonging to Alexander Lowenstein that were recovered after the disaster are listed in this series.

Writings contains Alexander Lowenstein's class notebooks, exam books and essays and papers he wrote as a student at Syracuse University. Scattered writings about Alex or the Pan Am 103 disaster are also housed here, with the exception of writings about Dark Elegy, which are included in the Dark Elegy series.

Alternative Formats

Selected materials from this collection have been digitized. Please contact the archivist for further information on accessing these materials.


Access Restrictions:

There are no access restrictions for this collection.

Use Restrictions:

Written permission must be obtained from the Pan Am Flight 103 Archives and all relevant rights holders before publishing quotations, excerpts or images from any materials in this collection.

Related Material

The Pan Am Flight 103 Archives contains additional materials and information related to the Alexander Lowenstein Family Papers. Related collections include:

Pan Am Flight 103 Audiovisual Collection

On Eagles' Wings Collection

Matthew Cox Papers

Pan Am 103 Publications Collection

Pamela Ray Papers

Dark Elegy Collection

Pan Am 103 Individuals Collection

London 1988 Image Collection

Remembrance Quilt Collection

Selected Search Terms


Lowenstein family.
Lowenstein, Alexander.
Lowenstein, Suse.
Syracuse University -- History.
Syracuse University.

Associated Titles

Dark Elegy.


Pan Am Flight 103 Bombing Incident, 1988.
Terrorism -- Government Policy -- United States -- Case Studies.
Terrorism -- Government Policy -- United States -- History.
Terrorism -- Government Policy -- United States.
Terrorism -- History -- 20th Century.
Lockerbie (Scotland)

Types of Material

Clippings (information artifacts)

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Alexander Lowenstein Family Papers,
Pan Am Flight 103/Lockerbie Air Disaster Archives
Syracuse University Libraries

Acquisition Information

The Alexander Lowenstein Family Papers were donated by Peter and Suse Lowenstein.

Processing Information

The Alexander Lowenstein Family Papers are processed.


The Alexander Lowenstein Family Papers are arranged alphabetically by and within most series. Some subseries may be arranged chronologically and oversized materials are stored separately.

Table of Contents


Audiovisual materials



Dark Elegy

Personal Objects

Photographs and negatives

Printed materials

Subject files