Museum of the University of Agriculture
al. Mickiewicza 24/28
Tel. (12) 662 42 08
Mondays – Fridays: 8.30 am – 3.30 pm
Tours (by appointment only; please book in advance).
Director of the Library: Bożena Pietrzyk PhD
Staff: Danuta Gajewska MSc
The Museum of the University of Agriculture in Kraków was established in 1976 as an entity within the Main Library, on the basis of Decree No. 8/76 issued by the rector of the Agricultural Academy, Prof. Tadeusz Wojtaszek. The museum was organized by Zdzisław Kosiek, Chief Librarian in the years 1962–1990. Prof. Wojtaszek and Zdzisław Kosiek belonged to a generation whose youth coincided with the outbreak of the Second World War. The victims of their own fate, they participated in the Polish Farmers’ Battalions (Bataliony Chłopskie) and The Home Army (Armia Krajowa), they understood the importance of working for the present and the future but also of documenting the past. The items that have been collected are presented by successive generations of librarians in the form of exhibitions accompanying the university’s anniversary events. The museum documents the history of the school, its founders and their scientific achievements. It is a substantial and diverse collection. The inventory of artistic and historic items includes photographs, portraits, albums, tableaux, commemorative medals, honorary diplomas, identity cards, decorations, standards, and memorabilia. The technical section includes: scales, optical, geodetic, measuring, meteorological, photographic, and cinematographic devices, as well as computers. Many exhibits in this collection have been described in the catalogue of
instruments and apparatus in the museum’s collection which was published in 2016. The museum has a collection of books dating from the years 1890–1949 by renowned professors of the university, as well as articles on museums whose activities are related to agriculture, technology, and ethnography. The book collection of Prof. Kazimierz S. Rouppert is particularly valuable. He was a botanist, dean of the Faculty of Agriculture at the Jagiellonian University, a biographer, voyager and social activist who settled in London after the Second World War where he helped support Polish academia abroad. The museum has prints, graphics and paintings in its collection, including work by Kraków artists such as Stefan Matejko (Jan Matejko’s nephew) and Walery E. Radzikowski. In 2018, the University of Agriculture celebrated its 65th anniversary as an autonomous entity − its 128th anniversary since its establishment. The school derives from the Jagiellonian University. From 1890 it was part of the University as the College of Agriculture (Studium Rolnicze) at the Faculty of Philosophy, and later, from 1923, it became the Faculty of Agriculture at the Jagiellonian University. Since 1953 it has been operating as an independent entity, changing both its profile and name several times: the Higher School of Agriculture, the Academy of Agriculture (from 1973) to become a university in 2008. The University of Agriculture inherited its didactic ideas and outlook from the Jagiellonian University, the Higher School of Agriculture in Dubliany (Ukraine) and the Higher School of Forestry in Lviv. During the Partitions of Poland it was still open to all students throughout Poland. Apart from teaching theory, it also focused on practical skills, and ran community courses (including gardening and courses on cooperatives). It promulgated knowledge about farming among society which resulted in the nationwide development of agriculture, and gardening in particular. The school participated in the economic and social life of the region, thus shaping the history of Kraków, Galicia, and Małopolska while being open to scientific cooperation with Polish and foreign centres. The museum, which operates within the Main Library, has 3,315 exhibits. It does not have its own exhibition space – the library houses display cabinets where medals and devices related to the school’s activities as well as the history of the University of Agriculture and its faculties are on display.
Danuta Gajewska MSc, in collaboration with Gabriel Wojcieszek, BSc