City and State Library Dortmund

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City and State Library Dortmund
StLB Dortmund.jpg

founding 1907
Library type City library , state library
place Dortmund
Reading room on the second floor (2015)
Book reading in Dortmund

The Dortmund City and State Library is one of the largest publicly owned libraries and is centrally located in Dortmund city center, directly opposite the main train station. The central library was designed by the architect Mario Botta from Lugano, Switzerland and moved into in May 1999.


When Erich Schulz took office as the first director in 1907, the " Wilhelm - Auguste-Viktoria -Bücherei" was founded as a unified library (combination of public library and academic library) of the city of Dortmund. On May 16, 1908, the library opened on the upper floor of the new building on the market square next to the town hall . The savings bank was on the ground floor. At the opening, the library held 22,000 volumes. In 1911 the library was given the subtitle "City Library", which became the only official name from 1919 onwards. From 1920, there was an increased functional change from the standard library to a scientifically oriented library. The building quickly turned out to be too small, especially since the Sparkasse received parts of the upper floor from 1917. From 1921, the library received the cloth hall in the adjoining town hall temporarily as a reading room. In 1924 the Sparkasse moved out and from then on the entire building was available. In 1926 the Westphalian-Lower Rhine Institute for Newspaper Research was founded under the direction of Erich Schulz. In 1932 the library was given the honorary title “State Library” and has been called “City and State Library” ever since. In 1940 the municipal public libraries became independent and in 1952 the Institute for Newspaper Research. In 1958 the new "House of Libraries", which housed the city and state library, the municipal public libraries and the institute for newspaper research , was opened. The building was located in the city center between Altem Markt and Wißstraße and was a listed building for a long time because the building was of architecture that was typical of the 1950s. In 1988 the city and state library and the city public libraries were merged. In 1999 the library moved to the new building opposite Dortmund's main train station .

Stocks, service and services

The StLB's holdings include around one million media, 350,000 of which are in the open access - and 500,000 in the magazine inventory as well as around 7,500 magazine titles. In addition to the printed inventory, users have access to an extensive electronic range (e-books, e-magazines, e-newspapers).

During the entire opening hours of the central library, library customers can get advice by phone or in person at the information counters. An information management system is available (DigiAuskunft) for questions of all kinds, requests and purchase suggestions.

The Dortmund City and State Library offers introductory courses for special target groups, e. B. for pupils (secondary level I + II), students and teachers, as well as events that are aimed at a wider audience. It is known nationwide for its comprehensive training program for upper secondary school students, which takes place in close cooperation with regional schools. The offers also include a comprehensive program to promote reading . The library has special offers for imparting information literacy and tours through the special collections.

In 2014, the legal holdings of the former administrative library were incorporated into the general reference library on the first floor.

Digital library

With the Digibib literature search engine , library customers can simultaneously search through different catalogs, bibliographies, electronic journals and full-text databases via a portal. Titles that are not available online or in the library can be ordered immediately via interlibrary loan . The library's holdings include well over 8500 specialist e-books on various subject areas and DRM-protected e-books in the field of fiction. The electronic resources are also available for access from home. The prerequisite is authenticated access with a valid ID number and PIN.

Manuscript Department / Westphalian Manuscript Archive

In the manuscript department, bequests , manuscripts, early prints, portraits and letters (autographs) are indexed and looked after. The inventory includes:

  • approx. 2000 early prints from the period from 1500 to 1850.
  • approx. 300 historical maps from the 16th to 18th centuries
  • approx. 8000 portraits, engravings, photos, woodcuts and cityscapes

Significant or partial bequests are, for example, those of Julius Hart , Ludwig Bäte , August Scholtis , Annette von Droste-Hülshoff or Ferdinand Freiligrath . The manuscript department also includes the Nelly Sachs archive, in which the printed and handwritten documents of the winners of the City of Dortmund's Culture Prize ( Nelly Sachs Prize ) are kept.

Art library

Here you can borrow graphics, watercolors, sculptures and drawings for your own apartment for a quarter of a year. The offer of the Artothek as a whole:

  • the loan of 1,300 exhibits of contemporary art by regional, national and international artists in many styles and techniques (mostly graphics);
  • changing art exhibitions by regional artists;
  • Conversations with the artists;
  • Purchase of the exhibits from the exhibitions (not from the art library).

Dortmund author documentation

Reflections in the glass facade of the
open access area

The Dortmund Author Documentation (DAD) has been collecting reviews of authors and their works for over 50 years. More than 40 German-language daily and weekly newspapers and magazines were continuously evaluated. Work in the DAD was discontinued in 2014. The DAD's holdings were taken over by the German Literature Archive in Marbach in 2015 . The documentation on the authors of the literature in the world of work has since been located in the Fritz-Hüser Institute for literature and culture in the world of work in Dortmund.

Mobile library service

The mobile library service provides library customers who cannot visit the library themselves due to illness or age, with books, audio books and other media from the city and state library.

District libraries

The supply of literature in the Dortmund districts is ensured with the nine district libraries. It is also possible to borrow books from another district library as well as from the central library via the internal loan system. The DigiBib can also be used here.

The libraries are located in the districts of Aplerbeck, Brackel, Eving, Hörde, Hombruch, Huckarde, Lütgendortmund, Mengede and Scharnhorst.


  • Elke Dißelbeck-Tewes, The incunabula of the Dortmund City and State Library. A short catalog. In: Contributions to the history of Dortmund and the county of Mark, Volume 85/86, 1994/95, pp. 349–373.
  • Alois Klotzbücher: From books and libraries in Dortmund: Contributions to the library history of an industrial city. Dortmund 1982.
  • Working group of critical librarians (ed.): Blasting - the last act? The Dortmund City and State Library 1907–1997. Hanover 1997 (Laurentius pamphlets)
  • Dortmund City and State Library in the new building. A library for the 21st century. Edited by the friends of the StLB, Dortmund 1999.
  • Ulrich Moeske: The city and state library Dortmund. In: Library research and practice. Volume 27, 2003, T.1 / 2, pp. 42-44.
  • Reading connects. 100 years of the Dortmund City and State Library. In: Home Dortmund. City history in pictures and reports. Journal of the historical association for Dortmund and the Grafschaft Mark eV in connection with the city ​​archive of Dortmund . Born 2007, no. 1
  • Renate Seitz: The Botta building of the Dortmund city and state library. Dortmund 2009.

Web links

Commons : Dortmund City and State Library  - Collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. Stadtarchiv Dortmund, Best. 3-629, p. 41ff - letters dated September 26, 1922, October 2, 1922 and October 14, 1922 between city councilor Dr. Dudek and Library Director Schulz
  2. Gabriele Unverferth: homes to books and people . In: Historical association for Dortmund and the Grafschaft Mark eV in connection with the city archive Dortmund (Hrsg.): Heimat Dortmund . No. 1/2007 , 2007, p. 14 .

Coordinates: 51 ° 30  '59.3 " N , 7 ° 27' 39.3"  E