Injured museums The central catalogue of the lost cultural values of the Russian Federation Research in the central catalogue

In books «Summary catalogue of cultural values of the Russian Federation stolen and lost in the Second World War» for the first time for all post-war years is published the register of the losses of the Russian museums, libraries and archives suffered in the past war. In the Summary catalogue thematic inventories and images of the plundered and destroyed property are presented.

In December, 1992 the governmental order of the Russian Federation created the State commission on a restitution of cultural values. At the first session they decided to make a work on the full catalogue of the Russian cultural values lost during the Second World War as a priority direction of activity.

Then very few people assumed, how much difficult this problem would be. At the disposal of composers of the Summary catalogue there was absent not only the exact and systematised data about wartime losses, but also the registration documentation, allowing to establish or check the facts of losses of cultural values. Ruining our palace complexes, museums, libraries, archives, Hitlerites pedantically took out or destroyed inventory books, inventories and card files.

In the first post-war years the Extreme state commission on an establishment and investigation of evil deeds of fascist aggressors and their accomplices established a damage put 64 especially valuable from 427 suffered Soviet museums, and also to 4000 libraries (there were destroyed 115 million printing editions) and archives of 19 areas (they lost 17 million affairs) RSFSR. In total in territory of RSFSR (together with Crimean АSSR) in German occupation 173 museums suffered.

The exact figure of the cultural values lost by Russia, has not been defined yet. The museum workers making lists of lost cultural values, worked with the registration documentation which remained only partially in many establishments. A lot of museums lost completely the registration documentation. Therefore the lists of the lost museum pieces which had been made in the first years after the end of the war, quite often differed from that which are presented last years.

Example to them is the data about the lost exhibits of suburban palaces-museums of Leningrad.

In 1951 the number of cultural losses was named in «the Certificate of stock-taking of museum values of suburban palaces-museums». This document was made by the commission where employees of the Central storehouse of museum funds entered. In the Central storehouse after war there were the museum pieces found out in suburban palaces-museums and returned from Germany.

Ekaterina's palace-museum, Pushkin (Tsarskoje Selo):
registered under inventory inventories — 42172 subjects;
During war lost — 30151 subject;

Aleksandrovsky palace Pushkin (Tsarskoje Selo):
registered under inventory inventories — 30382 subjects;
During war lost — 22628 subjects;

Pavlovsk palace-museum:
registered under inventory inventories — 22133 subjects;
During war lost — 8715 subjects;

Gatchina palace-museum:
registered under inventory inventories — 54030 subjects;
During war lost — 38152 subjects;

Palaces-museums of Peterhof
registered under inventory inventories — 31511 subjects;
During war lost — 16700 subjects;

On site in a heading «Lost cultural values» the numbers of cultural losses of suburban palaces-museums of Leningrad (today St.-Petersburg) are already others. Collective of experts of Ministry of culture of Russia being engaged in revealing, gathering and comparative studying of the lost cultural values, had rather extensive number of the documents which had been found out in domestic culture establishments, in the Russian and foreign archives.

Today it is possible to ascertain: 15 volumes of the catalogue in 33 books, devoted to losses of museums, libraries and archives of Moscow and Leningrad (St.-Petersburg), Moscow, Leningrad, Voronezh, Kursk, Pskov, Rostov, Smolensk, Novgorod areas, the North Caucasus, suburban palaces-museums of Leningrad (St.-Petersburg) represent the damage caused by war in 1.129.929 storage units (museum subjects, rare books and manuscripts, archival affairs).

The catalogue is calculated not only by experts, but also by all to whom the destiny of a domestic cultural heritage is not indifferent. The catalogue allows making active the further revealing and searches of the cultural values lost by our country.

© 2006—2022 Development and support by Central computation office of the Ministry of Cultural Affairs of the Russian Federation