History of National Library of Bolivia




The National Archives and Library of Bolivia is a public institution of national jurisdiction of a technical nature, with a team led by a high professional and ethical sense and commitment to the social function of the entity. In it the bibliographic heritage and historical archival heritage produced by public and private institutions in our country is preserved.

The National Library, Public Library created as Chuquisaca in July 1825, the momentum of political reforms in education determined by the liberators. In the 1870s began to be recognized as a National Library and its officials began to be occasionally called national librarians. Officially listed under that name in a Supreme Decree of 19 June 1872. This institution custody valuable collections of books from the sixteenth to the nineteenth and twentieth century from its collection increases with the material subject to legal deposit.

The National Library holds more than fifty thousand titles of books and brochures, plus other national newspapers and periodicals in different kinds of media. The inability to recover all the wealth of publications made in the country because of malfunction of legal deposit and the indifference of the Ministry of Culture, does not allow this center to fully comply with their recovery functions, organization, service and dissemination of heritage bibliographic. Lost control of that legal mechanism by the National Library 1968, less than fifty percent of the publications in the country become part of their collections. As a result of this abnormality, the country is unable to leave to posterity, in full, the intellectual production of Bolivians, current and past years.

The National Archives was created during the government of General Narciso Campero Act October 18, 1883, by declaring: 'General Archive of the Nation to the old Pool Hearing'. The documents kept by the National Archive correspond to documentaries produced by colonial public institutions (1549-1825) and Republican (1826), which some private sources add. Among the former are outstanding funds from the Audiencia de La Plata (1561-1825), the Cabildo de Potosi and Deeds of the Silver (1549-1825); among the latter generated by the Executive Branch.

The National Archives, meanwhile, protects over seven thousand meters of relevant public institutions of the colonial and republican period (1549-2000) archival documentation. The recovery of this heritage is for the institution one of its primary objectives, but is severe obstacles when performing actions against the insensitivity of public officials. Yet this is the richest country and complete file.

Furthermore, documents containing universal validity. The UNESCO program Memory of the World, has just accepted its records, last May 25, the documentary registration of the Royal Court of La Plata, along with other momentous documents to preserve the memory of mankind. In 2007 it made three carols with lyrics by Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz and Juan de Araujo music and Antonio Duran de la Mota. In 2010 this same program, but this time at the level of Latin America and the Caribbean, agreed to register the Journal of the guerrillas Ayopaya Jose Santos Vargas.

Years later, President Severo Fernández Alonso signed into law on November 28, 1898. This is a more complete and well structured layout, whose first article reaffirms the powers had until then the National Archive of Bolivia and expands conservation organization and dissemination of the documentation generated by the different branches of government.

The National Archives and Library of Bolivia is set in the historic center of the city of Sucre, former seat of the Audiencia of La Plata and capital city of the Plurinational State of Bolivia. Apple shares with three institutions of the first order: the Cathedral (1559), the Seminar of San Cristobal (1595) and the Interior Department, which was built in the nineteenth century to the government palace.

Before meeting in its proper place, this institution occupied several buildings. After the Chaco War (1932-1935), the National Library was moved to College meeting Junin Supreme Resolution of 17.X.1879, at the time, the National Archives already in the adjoining convent of Santo Domingo.

In these premises, and merged the two institutions will remain until 1948, when the structures of the building were damaged by a strong earthquake forcing that the move to the street Spain No. 43, facilities to meet this purpose and released in 1955. There they stayed until early 2003, when they occupied the new building Dalence Street No. 4, ordered to be built by the Cultural Foundation of the Central Bank of Bolivia.

It is essential for the preservation of their Bolivian documentary heritage, this institution has developed an experience full commitment to its preservation, to that end, has qualified and trained in prestigious centers abroad staff and infrastructure and equipment has a fully suitable for that purpose. The dependence of the National Archive and Library of Bolivia of the Cultural Foundation of the Central Bank of Bolivia, gives financial strength and the capacity to fulfill its mission and achieve its objectives infrastructure. Archival and bibliographic records are carefully preserved in a building constructed specifically for that purpose. It has spacious shells equipped with air conditioning systems and safety: fixed and mobile cameras placed at various points to the better control of the environment; with motion sensors and smoke connected to computers that are in the area of ​​security of the institution; control systems of temperature and humidity that allow precise knowledge of environmental fluctuations. It also has a restoration workshop, in a tripartite agreement with the Spanish Agency for International Cooperation for Development and the Municipality of Sucre, it is forming the fourth generation of curators and restorers. Many of them have already rendered invaluable services in other archives in the country.

Accesibilizar documentary heritage or enable their consultation, is another of the important functions of the institution. The National Library has staff with extensive knowledge of international standards for the conduct of the technical processes. For the dissemination of publications that are incorporated into its collection, the institution published annually since 2002, the Bolivian Bibliography, which includes books, pamphlets and non-book material entered during the year by Legal Deposit. Recently it has started the free distribution of this valuable tool to public libraries in the country, through which librarians can eliminate their daily work the complicated technical process of cataloging, devoting his time to provide qualified services to users.

The organization and documentary description based on universal principles in the National Archives, make the institution a model of its kind. The more than sixty descriptive tools between guides, inventories and catalogs, printed and virtual, corresponding to a similar amount of funds, series and files, enable the national and international scientific community and the Bolivian people to access, and efficiency all effectiveness, information contained on this rich heritage.

The remarkable ability to view documents in the National Archives, the result of the work of accessibility, scientific research has provided hundreds of scholars, domestic and foreign, resulting in fundamental contributions to the elucidation of our history. Part of this work, in the form of articles are delivered regularly in the Yearbook of Bolivians, archival and bibliographical studies, published since 1994. Moreover, the books published, dissertations and other academic degrees, papers and other documents drawn up on the basis of the documentary sources of the institution are countless.

To make all this research and publishing contribution to diffuse into the national and international scientific community, the National Archive and Library of Bolivia has a library with the name of Fray Antonio de la Calancha, offering themed books with Bolivia, from its backlist, the publishing projects of the cultural centers of the Cultural Foundation of the Central Bank of Bolivia, of all Bolivian publishing companies and international companies that publish bibliographic material about Bolivia.

For service users at the institution, the new building has a large and comfortable room for researchers, as well as several rooms dedicated to prominent figures of Bolivian culture, including that of "Gunnar Mendoza," where scholars can consult The documentation assembled or produced by these benefactors of archival and bibliographic heritage.

Finally, the National Archive and Library of Bolivia has created the Public Library 'Gunnar Mendoza L.' that by increasing and diversifying its bibliographic material, adapting to the needs of all users, it also allows you to put for safekeeping the bibliographic heritage of the state is used by researchers.