Mindaugo g. 8, 03107 Vilnius, tel. (8 5) 219 5320, (8 5) 213 7482, faks. (8 5) 278 4369,
el. p. istorijos.archyvas@lvia.lt, kodas Juridinių asmenų registre 190764568
AB "Swedbank" atsiskaitomoji sąskaita LT837300010002457221

 

History

HISTORY

 

            Lithuanian State Historical Archives (further – LSHA) is the biggest and the most important repository of archival documents for the Lithuanian history analysis from the 13th century up to the declaration of the Independence of Lithuania in 1918 (and in some history fields from 1918 up to 1940).

            The roots of LSHA go back to 1852, when the Central Archives of the Old Record Books (further – archives) was established in Vilnius on the basis of the personal decree of the Russian Emperor Nikolaj I (on April 2, 1852 – old style).

            According to this decree, the old record books from the oldest times up to 1799 had to be collected from Vilnius, Minsk, Grodno and Kaunas provinces. The absolute majority of them were the official documents of various state institutions of former Grand Duchy of Lithuania. In 1887, in the archives were 23326 old record books, separate inventories, sheaves of papers.

            In 1872 the Catalogue of the Old Record Books that had been prepared by N. Gorbachevski (it included 18243 storage units) was published, in 1929 appeared a new Catalogue, compiled earlier by I. Sprogis (it included 12108 storage units).

            At the beginning of the World War I, over 50% of the archive documents, that were, the oldest and the most valuable have been evacuated to Russia. Actually, with the beginning of the World War I the first period of the archives existence was finished.

            In 1915 – 1918 Vilnius was occupied by the German Army. Representatives of the German administration ran the archives. It seems that the archives escaped more serious losses.

            Due to the war actions in 1919 – 1920 Vilnius and the archives together with it belonged to different owners. In some definite periods it belonged to Bolsheviks (the Red Army), Poland, Lithuania.

            On February 7, 1919 the Polish Government issued the decree about organizing the state archives. Poland in the mentioned decree also included Vilnius State Archives into the list of archives that were being organized. Waclaw Gizbert – Studnicki was charged with the task of organizing of the archives.

            During the rule of Poland in 1922 the state archives were passed into the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Religions and General Education.

            The former Central Archives of Old Record Books, the Joint Archives of Vilnius Institutions and the archives of the closed M. Muravyov museum were joined to Vilnius State Archives.

            In 1934 in the Vilnius State Archives were accumulated over 1,3 mill. files, publications and manuscript papers. In 1934 the archives moved into the new premises at 8, Slovackio str. (now 8, Mindaugo str.).

            When the Second World War broke out, the army of the USSR occupied Vilnius. The archives started to be transferred to the Soviet Union. During the days of October 14 – 22 of 1939 there were transported about 18 wagons (by other information – 14 wagons) of archive documents to Minsk. An enormous damage was caused to the archives.

            In 1939, after Vilnius was given back to Lithuania by the USSR, the State Archives in Vilnius came to the jurisdiction of the Education Ministry. The historian priest dr. Juozapas Stakauskas was nominated its head.

            Since the occupation of Lithuania by USSR in June of 1940, according to existing practice, Lithuania's archives came to the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Interior Affairs, later of the People Commissariat of Interior Affairs (NKVD).

            At the beginning of 1941 after reorganization the Central State Archives of the Lithuanian SSR started its activity in Vilnius on the basis of the former Vilnius State Archives. First of all, the functions characteristic to NKVD were repressive.

            In summer of 1941 the German army occupied Lithuania. The Archives in Vilnius was in great danger. However, due to its chief J. Stakauskas, the archives actually remained untouched. Moreover, in 1942 – 1943 with the presence of the archives representative over 20 wagons of the archive documents were brought to Vilnius from Minsk. So, the archives managed to get back quite a lot of historical sources taken from Vilnius to the USSR in 1939. It must be noted that J. Stakauskas and some other archive workers, risking their lives, have been almost for a year hiding 12 persons of Jewish nationality in the archive premises and saved them from death.

            After the war the same policy of the Soviet Government was continued in the field of archives that had been started in 1940.

            After the resolution of August 24, 1956 that was adopted by the Council of Ministers of the Lithuanian SSR it was decided to establish The Central State Historical Archives of the Lithuanian SSR. The personnel were appointed starting from January 1, 1957.

            In 1960 the subordination of the archives to the Ministry of Interior Affairs was repealed. The archives became more open to the society, to the Lithuanian and foreign scientists. Better conditions were created for carrying out the research of the Lithuanian history.

            In 1963 the new building of the archives was finished and opened its door (10, Gerosios Vilties str.).

            From 1989 all the archive documents became accessible to the society, after making some of the`funds open. At the end of 1989 in the archives were 1262880 storage units (852 funds).

            The archive funds were not damaged during the complicated and significant years of 1990 – 1991 for the Lithuanian state restoring its independence.

            In 1990 a penthouse was built and added to the building of the archives. The conditions for preserving the documents became better.

            During the years of independence the technical equipment of the archive was essentially modernized. Computers, modern document copying machines, and microfilm reading equipment, video – watching security system became indispensable in the work of archivists.

            At the beginning of 2006 there were 1337040 storage units (1144 funds) collected in the archives. The archive documents cover over 16 thousand linear meters.

            During the years 1990 – 2005 the number of the readers increased more than 4 times.

            At the request of clients the archives gave certificates about the birth, marriage and death of persons.

 

Informaciją atnaujino: Oksana Krivenko-Bužinskaja, LVIA
Informacija atnaujinta: 2011-11-30 14:14