The music collection of the former Prussian State Library at the Jagiellonian Library in Kraków, Poland: Past, present, and future developments

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

Abstract

Before World War II the Prussian State Library, with its three million volumes, was one of the most important German libraries. It was operational until mid-1943, but the ever-increasing number of air raids over Berlin led to a large-scale evacuation of its collections to the east in late 1943 and early 1944. Among the most prized collections removed for safekeeping were hundreds of autograph scores and music manuscripts by Mozart, Beethoven, and Bach. As the result of postwar border changes some of these collections ended up in the Jagiellonian University Library in Krakow, where they remain. Since the unification of Germany consecutive German governments have been trying to negotiate the return of the Prussian music collection from Krakow to Berlin. However, negotiations have been extremely difficult as the broader question of German compensations for losses inflicted on Polish libraries by the Nazis is being raised. This article discusses the Prussian music collection in the context of cultural heritage and war reparations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)651-664
Number of pages14
JournalLibrary Trends
Volume55
Issue number3
StatePublished - Dec 1 2007

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Library and Information Sciences

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