Historical overview


The reading room of the University Library: Szeged, Dugonics square 13, 1920s

The building of the University Library with the Saint George statue in Kolozsvár, 1910s

The building of the University Library with the Saint George statue in Kolozsvár, 1910s
After the peace treaties following World War I, the Ferenc József University of Kolozsvár (today: Cluj Napoca, Romania) moved to Szeged in 1921. However, as all other properties of the University, its library remained there.  Two rooms in the Dugonics square building were given to the Library in the academic year of 1921/22 and its holdings was set up from surplus copies of other large libraries:   the Széchényi Library of the Hungarian National Museum provided 11.000, the Budapest University Library 9600, the Municipal Library 5700, the Library of the Academy 5000 items to the newly founded collection. Later almost half of the acquisitions came from the prosecutor’s office as deposit copies, and as a consequence in July of 1922 the Library already had a 50.000 items holdings.

The Loan Section of the University Library:: Szeged, Dugonics square 13, 1950s

Gifts of professors and collectors, acquisitions of private libraries also enriched the collection: between 1922 and 1924 bequests (3000 copies each) of Géza Tarnovszky, Károly Lechner and Sándor Imre, between 1924-1930 the library of Sándor Márki (10.000 books),  between 1930-32 libraries of Lajos Dézsi (2000 copies) and Sándor Gyuritza (3000 books) were added to the holdings. The reading room was opened in 1924: there were 100 seats in 1925 and 140 in 1952. In 1945 a systematic development commenced which, from 1952, was supported by a strong cooperation between the departmental libraries and the main library. The Library also received items from the ecclesiastical and aristocratic collections secularized between 1949 and 1952. It was this time when the library of the Franciscan monastery of Szeged and the near 5000 item large collection of the Eszterházy family were included in the holdings of the Library.

The Enquiry room of the University Library: Szeged, Dugonics square 13, 1960s

In the 1960s book and periodical purchases from abroad largely increased. New catalogs with new type of descriptions were created and several new services were introduced.  The beginning of the 1990s brought a new stage in the development of the Library: buying an integrated library system and automating library procedures the holdings of the Library could be accessed through an online catalog.  The University Library became one of the most dynamic collection and institution of the country.

The large (Humanities) reading room of the University Library: Szeged, Dugonics square 13, 1990s

Then a paradigm like change in the usage of the library and its services, still determining our presence, took place in 2004 by the opening of the new building of the University Library. Multiplying seats and workstations that provide access to electronic resources, integrating more than 70 departmental, institutional, faculty libraries the University Library possesses 1.200.000 books, 250.000 periodical items and 130.000 other documents (manuscripts, microfilms, xerox copies, etc., that is, more than 1.5 million library items, among them 300.000 copies on open access shelves. This holdings is expanded by the digital collection in which beside of dozens of databases more than 10.000 electronic journals are available for study and research.
In the front: one of the computer labs of the University Library. In the back: glass walls of the reading rooms, József Attila Study and Information Centre, Szeged, Ady square 10, 2007
Last Updated on Tuesday, 26 June 2012 10:55

Additional information