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The Museum Library has existed since 1925. It gathers publications related to all the fields of research represented in the Museum. The library collection has been created based on the products of European culture, mainly Polish, with particular emphasis on old prints dealing with the history and culture of the region of Bydgoszcz. The collecting profile of the Museum library has been determined by the specialist character of its book collection. Scientific and popular science literature encompasses publications from the fields of archaeology, ethnography, historical science and the related studies, such as numismatics, faleristics, heraldry, genealogy, sphragistics, history of art, museology, craft, military history, as well as law and historic preservation, and other. Within the field of archaeology the library collects all kinds of publications on prehistory of the Polish lands, particularly of the Bydgoszcz region. The ethnographic collection encompasses publications concerned with the neighbouring ethnographic regions: Pałuki, Kashubia, Krajna, Kociewie and Kuyavia, with particular emphasis on periodicals and magazines. Among historical publications we mainly find those concerned with the history of Poland. Another large collection is the collection of armorials. Another rich collection is the collection of bydgostians. It comprises city guides, address books, monographs on the institutions active in Bydgoszcz, leaflets, special issues and a collection of the “Bromberg” magazines. Publications from the field of numismatics are mostly devoted to the history of money, the Polish money and medal making, and, to a lower extent, to the history of numismatics in other countries. In relation to the owned collection of artistic craft, the library started gathering studies concerned with particular periods, styles and artistic workshops, as well as catalogues from various Polish and European plants. Militaria constitute a separate collection in the museum, hence the literature related to the historical development of hand weapons and firearms, regimentals and equipment of the Polish Army, the history of wars and warfare. This collection is complimented with the corresponding items from the field of faleristics, concerned with decorations, medals and distinctions.

A separate and a very important group of publications are those devoted to art. The library owns album publications related to the history of Polish and foreign art, studies discussing particular art disciplines and techniques in historical depiction, items concerned with methodology, theory, sociology and psychology of art, as well as monographs on various

Polish and foreign artists. Among them we distinguish a collection of books and catalogues from the exhibitions devoted to the life and artistic activity of the museum’s patron – Leon Wyczółkowski. Publications concerned with museology mainly include research works on the history and theory of museology, books related with managing of cultural institutions, museum guides and studies published by various museums in Poland. The activity of museums is documented with exhibition and collection catalogues. The collection is rich and diverse. A relatively new collection of the museum is the collection of musical items. For that reason the library began gathering publications concerned with the history of music and sound documents. With regard to the newly established Department of Industrial Architecture, on the other hand, the library started to collect prints related to the history of production of explosive materials and ammunition.

The collections are complimented through exchanges of publications with museums from the whole country. Such publications are especially valuable due to the fact that they are not available in the bookselling market.

Reference library is comprised of law and legislation codes on historic preservation, specialist encyclopaedias, dictionaries, professional and general knowledge magazines, auction catalogues. The reading room offers publications concerned with Bydgoszcz and its region, as well as a number of museum publications.

The access to literature is facilitated with alphabetical and subject catalogues. Since 2009, works have been carried out aiming at creating a computer catalogue.

Moreover, the library conducts a broad documentary activity. It works on completing text materials: those related with the exhibiting, publishing and educational activities of the museum, as well as concerned with the biographies and artistic activity of Polish and foreign artists, with particular consideration of the region of Bydgoszcz and the Museum’s patron – Leon Wyczółkowski. It archives extended articles and press mentions on artistic events initiated by the museum and the more important cultural events in the city and region.

At the end of 2007, the book collection of the museum library counted 47 thousand volumes, including magazines, and is still being updated. The collections are mainly used by the museum staff; however, the library offers the possibility of using the entire documentation in the reading room.


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