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University Library's Archive Collections Print

University Library’s Archive Collections

The Library’s Archive collections met a particularly difficult fate just as much as the Library’s book collection. The Archive was confiscated and evacuated to Russia after the November Uprising in 1832 and again in 1915 during the WWI. Both evacuations dispersed the collected documents, which could never be restored to their original state despite the fact that a large portion of the Archive was returned to Warsaw University’s Library due to the agreements reached in the Peace of Riga (the Riga Treaty) on March 18th, 1921.

The German occupation of Warsaw 1939-1945, the stationing of German police and army in the library’s buildings, and finally the evacuation of the book holdings to Germany towards the end of WWII further damaged the Archive collections. Additional destruction occurred in the course of the Warsaw Uprising in 1944. Despite this, the interwar and WWII’s archive collections can be considered as exceptional against the background of the Warsaw University’s General Archive which was almost entirely consumed in fire.

The most complete holdings of the university library’s archives concern the postwar collections.

The Warsaw University’s Library collections can be an excellent source for studying a number of fields and topics: the history of the library; nineteenth- and early twentieth-century private book collections and educational institutions; the history of readership and literacy in the same period; the role and significance of the library in the formation of Polish elites and intelligentsia.


Practical information

© 2018 University of Warsaw Library
Financial support from the European Commision within the Socrates/Erasmus Programme.