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The World's greatest Munkácsy collection
The Library

Among the collections of the Békéscsaba Museum Association established in 1889, the Library also had a place. The library of Dr. Albert Bence was donated to the Museum by his heirs. The Museum Association worked on making his library a public one. The book stock of the library was developed by donations and exchange copies and purchasing. The newly built museum, i.e. the House dedicated to Public Education, was handed over to the Municipality in 1914. The Municipality undertook the task of continually developing the collections; the professional supervision was exercised by the National Supervisory Board of Museums and Libraries.

There was no more financial assistance following the First World War, work stopped due to the indifference of the Municipality. Development was restarted in 1924. Work was revived by the extension of the library and the opening of the reading-room. The museum was awarded state aid even until 1936 but maintenance expenses were mostly borne by the Municipality. In the inter-war years, the enrichment of the Békéscsaba Municipality Library (museum library) lagged much behind expectations: the museum was enriched 80 to 150 volumes a year. At the time, the stock of books consisted altogether of 6,500 volumes. The library worked as Municipality library even after the Second World War. Géza Féja, librarian, saved part of the material of the aristocratic libraries, which were later donated to the County Library.

The Municipality Library, which was still working in the museum at the time, moved to the building of the District Library in 1951. Thus, the Central County Library was established. Subsequently, the Museum Library only performed research tasks. It moved to a new hall in 1995 which, mostly for the fellow-workers of the museums, provides research opportunities but it is open for other researchers as well. The enlarged ground-space made it possible to arrange books according to classified order. In the stock of the library, the classified orders were placed next to each other. The book stock of the library contains now 16,000 volumes and 3,800 periodicals. The increased demand on the library has not been in line with the amount paid for acquisition. There is no way of binding the books or the periodicals. The enrichment of the stock is mostly made possible by exchange copies.

Enrichment in 2000: 291 volumes and 32 periodicals
Enrichment in 2001: 518 volumes and 36 periodicals

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