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Městská knihovna Klatovy
Provozní doba 16. 4. 2014: oddělení pro dospělé 13-18, dětské oddělení je zavřené  (další dny)

Interesting Information about the History and Development of the Libraries in Klatovy

The history of the Klatovy libraries begins in the period of national pride following the fall of Bach's absolutism. This period of national awareness brought the development of the cultural and social scenes to the entire country. The establishment of the libraries in Klatovy was even connected to the developing activities of Klatovy's authors.

Mayor doctor Jan Nauš was responsible for the first steps leading to the establishment of the library - thanks to his impulse, leading citizens met at Klatovy's town-hall on December 21, 1859 where they decided that a public town library would be established. At the same time, the suggested statutes were approved.

The library started operating at the start of 1860. Josef Andrlík, the high school professor, was the library's first librarian. There were 1137 Czech books and 65 German books recorded in January 1865. Because of the war, the library ceased to function in 1866. In 1896, the Academic Association Úhlava suggested that a public library and reading rooms be set up. The reading room was opened on May 1, 1898, but the library did not open until April 29, 1903, because the library regulations had not been prepared yet.

If one follows the archives, it is evident that the public reading rooms' administration continually requested financial contributions from the town-hall in order to be able to operate the reading rooms, to buy newspapers and magazines, as well as making fuel available for the heating of the rooms. On January 1, 1912, the community took the public reading room under its management and at the January 31st- town council meeting, a special trusteeship was established for the public town library and reading room.

A continuous attempt to unite libraries is evident in the history of Klatovy libraries. The local organization of the Czech Advanced Party recommended centralized libraries and suggested a number of policies - for example, the development of a book list, including those of federal club libraries, in the form of catalogues which could be used when purchasing books. The clubs and organizations expressed a variety of reactions to this suggestion.

The newly established independent, democratic Czechoslovakia in 1918 was another stimulus for a new stage of library development. In 1919, a new Czechoslovak library law was established which ordered that public libraries be built in each community. At the same time, the Klatovy library was undergoing one of the most significant events of its local history with the opening of the children's reading room on March 9, 1921. The head teacher Josef Aim was partially responsible for the newest development. Božena Suková, a teacher and a co-founder, was chosen to be the reading room's supervisor. At this time, the children's reading room was not only known in this country, but also abroad. Photos from this reading room were being used at various exhibitions to show the advancement of the Czechoslovak library system. The reading room was expanded in 1934 and became a symbol for many others in various cities. From 1936 to 1937, about 400 children visited the children's reading room. At this time, the room had about 2 250 books, 27 magazines and homeland study volumes. The library and reading rooms were temporarily closed a number of times during the fascist occupation of Czechoslovakia. From May to September of 1945, František Buriánek, a well-known literary critic and historian who later became a Prague university professor, became the library's voluntary librarian.

On July 26, 1951, the Regional People's Library was established which consisted of Aim's children's reading room and the public library. The library therefore started to function as a town library, as well as a methodical-organizational center for local people's libraries found within the entire region.

In the fifties, the libraries attempted to organize huge readers' activities, including group readings and book discussions, mainly geared towards creative topics. However, these attempts were not very popular amongst the readers. A group of library employees, along with their leader PhDr. František Pacák, came with the idea of having lectures about the country's oldest authors, while bringing these activities outside. Homeland study literary trips became a tradition n these years.

The sixties brought about a lot of social and cultural activities of the town - the activity of the library played a part in the town's happenings. The public appreciated the activities surrounding the100th anniversary of the library's establishment, including a convention and a meeting of authors and citizens.

The second part of the sixties brought about a gradual freeing of the ideological pressures. In 1968, the expected changes did not come about and the following year brought about strict ¨normalization measures¨ which also affected libraries.

In the seventies and eighties, similar activities as to those past lectures, such as lectures with authors, illustrators, journalists, literary zones for children, literary contests, and exhibitions, played a significant role in the role of the libraries.

The end of 1989 and the start of 1990 brought political and social changes. On January 1, 1993, a second-hand section of the library was opened and Klatovy's town hall took over the library's administration, making it once again a municipal library.

From 1991, the library has been organizing "Literary Šumava", which is literary contests for amateur authors, and the winner's work being published in a journal. The library has also been offering its services to its visually disabled citizens from this time. A department with sound-books available has been developed for the blind and visually disabled.

In the nineties, the relocation of the library was being discussed. This relocation had become a necessity not only because of the inappropriate space, but also due to the fact that the library's neighboring buildings had been restitutionally returned to the previous owners. After a number of proposals and suggestions, the town council and representatives decided that a part of the former Jesuit dormitories found on Balbínova street would be renovated and that the new library would be re-located here. The newly modernized library was officially opened on March 1, 1999 in the presence of many significant hosts.

The library has been on the Internet since 1998 and with its connection to the library system Clavius and the electronic storing of its library collection, much recognition has brought to the municipal library. In 1998, the children's department changed to a fully automatic electronic book-lending protocol. The library began working with an information center foundation in Prague which allowed the library to become a regional center for information accessing for the non-profit sector.

At the present time, the Klatovy library has seven departments:



 

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