Guide to the Research Collections



The collection relating to the history of Poland includes more than 3,000 volumes. Accompanying the collections of works of the outstanding Polish historians of the nineteenth century (Lelewel, Kalinka, Szajnocha, Szujski among them), is a great number of the most important works of such modern historians as Korzon, Askenazy,

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Halecki, Konopczynski, Limanowski, Kutrzeba, and Haiman. There is also a considerable number of memoirs, genealogies, and works of political leaders. Specimens of literature that appeared during the German occupation of the country during World War II, as well as selections of books and pamphlets produced by Polish émigrés and displaced persons, are also included in the collections. In 1952 the library received as a gift from the Polish Research and Information Service in New York City a collection of more than 2,000 post-World War II books, pamphlets, and periodicals which document recent trends in life in Poland. There are documentary recordings of interest to the student of twentieth-century Polish history in the Rodgers and Hammerstein Archives of Recorded Sound (described in chapter 31 of this Guide ).

The small group of old Polish imprints in the library was considerably augmented by the acquisition in 1968 of some 300 pamphlets printed in 0Poland between 1590 and 1802, many of them at the Jesuit press at Wilno. Most of the pamphlets are panegyrics issued to commemorate such state events as royal weddings, declarations of war, or investitures of cardinals, and they contain a wealth of historical and genealogical information. Other early imprints include a rare first edition of Starowolski's Reformacya obyczaiow Polskich (1650?), Szymon Okólski's Orbis Polonus (1641), and Rudawski's Historiarum Poloniae (1755).

Important Polish periodicals and series are well represented. Among other titles are the Monumenta Poloniae Historica (1864-), Akta grodzkie i ziemskie (1868-1931), and the Roczniki dziejów spoecznychi gospodarczych (1931-).

Public Documents

Documents for Poland include the Sprawozdania stenograficzne of the Sejm (1919-) and of the Senat (1922-38). The library currently receives the official gazette, Monitor polski. Statutes include early seventeenth-century and later examples continuing with the Dziennik ustaw (1939-); a separate set published by the government in London during the period from 1939 to 1945 is also available. Other documentary material is largely statistical in nature, although there is much from the Instytut Geologiczny. A few municipal documents, primarily statistical, come from Warsaw, Lodz, and other cities.


The Hardwicke collection in the Manuscripts and Archives Division includes three volumes of official printed and manuscript documents relating to King Augustus II and other Polish matters during the years 1729 to 1731; two additional volumes in the Hardwicke collection contain letters and miscellaneous papers of Count Hoym, minister and diplomat during the same period. Other manuscript items include the official papers of domain councillor von Brause at Peterkau and Posen during the period from 1793 to 1800.