Opening times:
Monday-Friday from 8.00 am to 3.00 pm


The oldest core in the Institute’s Library consists of two private collections, one of which was donated in the 19th century by Reggio Emilia’s illustrious Malaguzzi-Valeri family (whose archive is also stored here), while the other was acquired in 1918 by the heirs of Alberto Catelani, a scholar and collector from the town who loved local history. He was also the manager of the Record Office at the end of the 19th century, taking on the role just a few years after Ippolito Malaguzzi-Valeri.

These two libraries contain various kinds of books: volumes, booklets, 16th century printed editions, local manuscripts, journals, and a small collection of prints and drawings of particular interest for the history of local art in the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries. There is a printed catalogue for both libraries, edited by Luciana Bonilauri (Reggio Emilia, 1993).

Alongside this first core, we have seen the formation of what is numerically speaking the biggest part of the Institute’s Library, due to works arriving through the usual channels of donations, exchanges, direct acquisitions by the Record Office and ministerial consignments.

This means that an overall library collection of significant value and interest is available, presently consisting of around 18,000 items. It is largely made up of works concerning history and the related disciplines, such as palaeography, diplomatics, sphragistics and archiving systems, as well as texts of a local nature. The latter are present thanks above all to the obligation to provide a copy of any publications produced by users of the Record Office’s study room.

One section is devoted to journals and one to consultation; included in the latter are manuals on librarian disciplines and history supports.

In the study room there are card index catalogues divided by author and subject, as well as general works, inventories, and monolingual and bilingual dictionaries, all freely accessible on open shelves.

The means of consultation of the library materials are established by special Library Regulations , which also precisely define the main aims of this area of the Institute.


The Reggio Emilia Record Office publishes the Inventari e cataloghi collection (meaning Inventories and catalogues, it features archive inventories, bibliographies, editions of sources, etc.). If they are available, these volumes are part of a list of publications that can be requested by cultural institutes and bodies in an exchange scheme.