Stralsund City Archives

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City archive of the Hanseatic city of Stralsund

Archive type Municipal Archives
Coordinates 54 ° 19 '3.4 "  N , 13 ° 5' 30.9"  E Coordinates: 54 ° 19 '3.4 "  N , 13 ° 5' 30.9"  E
place Stralsund , Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania
Visitor address At the Johanniskloster 35
18439 Stralsund
founding 13th Century
Age of the archive material 13th century until today
ISIL DE-2186 (Stralsund City Archives)
carrier Hanseatic city of Stralsund
Administration building of the city archive (2006)
Badenstrasse 13, main office of the city archive until 2001, today city library
Johanniskloster, branch since 1964, from the Fährwall
Charter of incorporation from 1234

The Stralsund City Archive is a scientific institution of the Hanseatic City of Stralsund , which has an extensive inventory of files , documents , photos , maps , tears and books . The city archives is located in an annex of the former convent of the Franciscan , the St. John's Abbey in the Schillstraße . Since 2018, most of his holdings have been housed in a storage facility shared with the Stralsund Museum in the street “Zur Schwedenschanze”.

History and existence

On behalf of the city administration, the archive stores all archival documents as well as, since 1937, the older holdings of the city library. In the Middle Ages, the privileges and other documents were not stored centrally in one place, such as in Lübeck or Greifswald, but were arranged in small boxes according to the exhibitor in the councilors' houses. Later they came to a separate room in the town hall. In the 16th century, the future mayor, Bartholomäus Sastrow, worked as a protonotary for the organization of documents and files. From him comes a still preserved rubric book, i. H. a thematically arranged list of the documents. A list made by Johannes Vahl of the files and documents kept in the chancellery vault of the town hall dates from 1598. Until the 19th century, the holdings were only occasionally rearranged or the order revised. As is generally the case, the archive was the chancellery's repositioned registry. The city’s first syndic was responsible. In an instruction from 1654 it says that he has “1.) the supervision of the archive, which will be kept in good safekeeping and order.” In addition, there were separate registries of the various city courts, the pound chamber, the eight-man chamber , the monasteries and hospitals, etc. At the end of the 18th century, Johann Albert Dinnies dealt with the archive holdings, especially with the documents. He put on several handwritten document books. He was followed in the first half of the 19th century by Arnold Brandenburg , whose duties as in-house counsel included looking after the archive. In 1868 and 1869 Ferdinand Fabricius arranged the archive holdings on behalf of the council, but there was no permanent employment of a full-time archivist until the end of the Second World War. Rather, in 1919 Fritz Adler was entrusted with the management of the adult education center, the city library and the museum as well as the supervision of the archives that were still kept in the town hall. On the occasion of the celebrations for the 200th anniversary of the victorious end of the siege of the city by Wallenstein, the city commissioned the retired Szczecin State Archives Director Hermann Hoogeweg to reorganize the archives in 1928 . Above all, he registered the document holdings, a job over which he died in 1930. In the 1930s and 1940s, Peter Pooth in particular made a contribution to further developing the archive holdings. The archive has been staffed full-time with academic staff since 1952. After the Second World War, the company moved into premises in Badenstrasse , on the one hand to accommodate the archive materials that had been relocated during the war, and on the other hand to create space for the employees for their viewings and scientific work. From 1964, under the direction of Herbert Ewe , who later became an honorary citizen of the city, the premises of the former monastery were expanded.

The archive is one of the largest of its kind in Germany. Above all, extensive documents from the Middle Ages and the early modern period make it interesting for research into the history of the Hanseatic League and Pomerania beyond the actual city history of Stralsund .

The city registers of the city of Stralsund have been completely available since 1270, citizen registers since 1319. However, the most important holdings undoubtedly include the two city charter documents from October 31, 1234 and February 25, 1240, the two documents on the Stralsund Peace of May 24, 1370, the oldest city chronicle from the 15th century and the alliance treaty with Sweden of June 25, 1628, which established Stralsund's almost two-hundred-year membership of the Nordic Kingdom.

In 2004 the oldest paper document in Denmark was discovered in the archive . Further treasures are u. a. the Stralsund illuminated manuscript made by an unknown artist between 1611 and 1615 with depictions of all Western Pomeranian cities, 9,000 documents, over 100,000 books and manuscripts (the oldest from the 13th century), woodcuts from the 15th century, seals , the Codex Stralesundensis ( a manuscript from the 15th century) and the library of Count Axel von Löwen .


Bookplate of the library from the 19th century

The archive library has an unusually large total inventory of around 100,000 volumes, of which the historical holdings , including 80 incunabula , make up around 75%. It includes the former council library, which in turn emerged in the 16th century as a result of the Reformation from a book collection organized by the mayors Franz Wessel (1487–1570) and Nikolaus Gentzkow (1502–1576) and which was continuously expanded into the early 20th century , as well as a number of valuable private libraries, most of which were bought in the 19th century, and numerous historical school programs . In 1937 the library was split up, transferring responsibility for the old stock to the city archive, while the Stralsund city library was responsible for the new literature . In 1946 the library of the Stralsund grammar school also came into the care of the city archives. Of the special collections, the library of the Swedish Governor General Axel Graf von Löwen , which was given to the city of Stralsund in 1761 as part of his collections, is also particularly noteworthy .

Mold growth and sale of cultural goods

Acknowledgments by Gregor Langemak from 1780 from one of the volumes offered on the Internet in 2012

The archive was closed to the public on October 17, 2012; the reason given was mold growth. The mold infestation became known after the city sold part of the former high school library to an antiquarian in June 2012. The buyer had informed the city of the poor condition of the volumes.

The scope of the sale was initially unclear, and the buyer was unknown. The archivist and historian Klaus Graf made the sale public and sharply criticized it. On October 30, 2012, the city's press spokesman confirmed that an antiquarian had bought the high school library that had previously been in the Stralsund city archive. A committee of the citizenry had approved the sale in the closed part of a meeting. According to the public agenda, this happened at the meeting of the main committee of the citizenship on June 5, 2012. The important old holdings of the grammar school library of Stralsund grammar school contained archivally valuable Pomeranica , which particularly reflected the intellectual life in Stralsund and Western Pomerania since the Reformation. It was gradually taken over by the city archives after 1945, with the parts that were particularly suitable for replacing war losses and supplementing the existing holdings in the amount of approx. 1000 volumes from 1947 onwards in the archive. The remaining part of the grammar school library, which was to be sold or exchanged according to a decision by the city's cultural committee on December 7, 1946, in order to form a “central library for teachers”, was then also in the city archives by 1956 at the latest. The sale of these 5,926 volumes caused great astonishment among experts, such as Harald Müller and Eric W. Steinhauer .

On November 12th, Mayor Badrow asked the buyer to refrain from continuing sales until further notice in order to review the sale. The buyer immediately assured this. On November 14, 2012, the Ostsee-Zeitung reported that the antiquarian had stopped selling.

By mid-November, over 2000 people had signed an online petition Save the Stralsund Archive Library .

On November 20, 2012, the opinion of the historians Nigel F. Palmer and Jürgen Wolf on the sale of the high school library was published. As a result of this report, the Hanseatic city of Stralsund tried to reverse the sale and restore the broken collection. The head of the city archive, Regina Nehmzow , was given leave of absence after the mold infestation and the sale became public. After an earlier, unauthorized sale of 1,000 books came to light, the Hanseatic city of Stralsund filed a complaint against Nehmzow on December 4, 2012 and terminated the employment contract without notice.

Of the 5,926 volumes sold in 2012, 5,278 volumes were bought back by the antiquarian. Another 63 volumes were returned to the city or purchased on the open market. As of February 2014, another 585 volumes are missing, at least three of which were offered by a New York antiquarian. The price of the equivalent of 181,000 euros for a three-volume edition with works by Johannes Kepler alone almost doubled the proceeds achieved by the city for all volumes. In the meantime, the antiquarian of the Hanseatic city of Stralsund offered the edition at the price for which he had bought it.

On May 4, 2018, a former NVA news center, which had been converted into the central depot of the Hanseatic city of Stralsund, was handed over to the users by the developer as the future storage location for the holdings of the Stralsund city archive and the STRALSUND MUSEUM . On June 27, 2018, the first cleaned part of the archive library (E 4 °) was stored in the depot. By the summer of 2019, all inventory relevant to use should be cleaned and stored in the central depot.

On May 20, 2020, archive director Schleinert announced during a press conference that the reading room will be open for use again from May 25, 2020, but in compliance with the necessary hygiene regulations due to the CORONA pandemic.

Archive managers


In the series “Publications from the City Archives”, the scientists' findings are published.


Archive history

  • Arnold Brandenburg : News of the creation and establishment of the town hall library in Stralsund , In: Ernst Heinrich Zober : Alphabetical directory of the books in the town hall library in Stralsund , Löffler, Stralsund 1829, pp. 3-39 ( digitized version ).
  • Arnold Brandenburg: The town hall archive of the city of Stralsund. In: Journal of Archival Studies, Diplomatics and History. ed. by LF Hoefer, HA Erhard u. Ms. LB von Medem, 1st vol., Hamburg 1834, pp. 76-100 ( digitized )
  • Hermann Hoogeweg : The emergence of the Stralsund city archive , In: Baltic studies . , NF 30 (1928), no. 1, pp. 85-103 ( digitized version in the digital library MV ).
  • Herbert Ewe: Peter Pooth and his importance for the archive. A contribution to the history of the Stralsund City Archives. In: Greifswald-Stralsund yearbook . Vol. 5.1965, 8, pp. 119-127.
  • Herbert Ewe: The branch of the Stralsund city archive. In: Archive messages . Vol. 18.1968, 1, pp. 37-41.
  • Herbert Ewe: The building of the former Franciscan monastery St. Johannis zu Stralsund and the beginning of its restoration , In: Greifswald-Stralsunder Jahrbuch, vol. 8.1968 / 69, 8, pp. 121-138.
  • Herbert Ewe: Treasures of a Baltic city. 7 centuries in the Stralsund archive. (= Publications of the Stralsund City Archives. Vol. 6), Herrmann Böhlaus Nachf., Weimar 1974.
  • Herbert Ewe, Renate Schaarschuh: Stralsund City Archives 1949–1979 , In: Archive Messages, Vol. 29.1979, 3, pp. 93–97.
  • Hans-Joachim Hacker, The Stralsund City Archives 1945–1985 , In: Yearbook for Regional History , Vol. 15/2 (1988), pp. 230–235.
  • Hans-Joachim Hacker: To the documents of the Stralsund City Archives. In: Communitas et dominium. Festschrift for the 75th birthday of Johannes Schildhauer , ed. by Horst Wernicke u. a., Großbarkau 1994, pp. 94-101.
  • Hans-Joachim Hacker: The City Archives of the Hanseatic City of Stralsund 1990–1995. In: Information on modern city history. 1995, 2, pp. 30-31.
  • Hans-Joachim Hacker: The Stralsund city archive. Treasures of the most important Pomeranian Hanseatic city. In: Pomerania. Vol. 39.2001, 4, pp. 27-31.
  • Hans-Joachim Hacker: The new "main office" of the city archive - Am Johanniskloster 35. In: Ten years of urban renewal, Hanseatic City of Stralsund. , 2003, pp. 80-81.
  • Dirk Schleinert: Stralsund City Archives before the restart. Preserved treasures meet digital media . In: World Cultural Heritage. Historic old towns Stralsund and Wismar , 2018, pp. 72–73.

So-called. "Causa Stralsund"

  • Klaus Graf: Causa Stralsund. Can a city sell its cultural heritage? . In: LISA of November 13, 2012
  • Philipp Maaß: The sale of the high school library in the Stralsund city archive . In: BuB: Forum Bibliothek und Information 65, Nr. 2 (2013), pp. 84–86 online version
  • Klaus Graf: Lessons from the Stralsund case: More protection for historical holdings . In: LIBREAS.Library Ideas Vol. 9, Issue 1 / Issue 22 (2013) PDF
  • Dirk Schleinert : Considerations for the reconstruction of the Stralsund high school library. In: Andrzej Puławski (Ed.): The importance of further processing of digitized copies of regional library holdings in the network / Znaczenie udoste̜pniania kopii cyfrowych regionalnych zbiorów bibliotecznych w sieci. Materiały z konferencji Stargard Szczeciński, 5 września 2014 r. Stargard 2014 , pp. 15-25.


Web links

Commons : Stadtarchiv Stralsund  - collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. Stralsund City Archives, Hs 212, p. 616.
  2. ^ According to the Stralsund archive library in the handbook of historical book holdings
  3. Press release of the city of Stralsund on from October 17, 2012, last accessed on December 8, 2017
  4. Incredible: Historical high school library in the Stralsund city archive sold to antiquarian on Inetbib , October 30, 2012, last accessed on December 8, 2017.
  5. ↑ Invitation to a meeting with agenda , accessed on October 31, 2012 (archive version, accessed on December 8, 2017)
  6. Dirk Schleinert: Considerations for the reconstruction of the Stralsund high school library. In: Andrzej Puławski (Ed.): The importance of further processing of digitized copies of regional library holdings in the network / Znaczenie udoste̜pniania kopii cyfrowych regionalnych zbiorów bibliotecznych w sieci. Materiały z konferencji Stargard Szczeciński, 5 września 2014 r. Stargard 2014 , p. 19f.
  7. Ibid
  8. Both cited in Archivalia , accessed October 31, 2012
  9. ^ Archivalia , accessed October 30, 2012
  10. Causa Stralsund: Partial success: Antiquarian stops selling , accessed on November 15, 2012
  11. Save the Stralsund Archive Library , accessed on November 15, 2012, at this point in time 2,361 signatures on openPetition , last accessed on December 8, 2017; Closing date: 3,682 signatures.
  12. Expert opinion on the cultural and historical value of the Stralsund "Gymnasialbibliothek" is available (11/20/2012) , accessed on November 20, 2012, last accessed on December 8, 2017
  13. ^ Ostsee-Zeitung Stralsund , November 22, 2012.
  14. ↑ Book sales: report against archive manager , NDR , report from December 4, 2012, archive version accessed on December 8, 2017
  15. Books from Stralsund in USA emerged , report in art - Das Kunstmagazin from February 25, 2014, archive version accessed on December 8, 2017.
  16. ^ Message on the NDR website
  17. Ostseezeitung Stralsund issue June 27, 2018
  18. Ostseezeitung Stralsund edition November 9, 2018
  19. Ostseezeitung Kultur edition of May 20, 2020 (behind Paywall) and press release from the Hanseatic City of Stralsund of May 21, 2020 .