Short history

History of libraries in Ptuj

The first public library in Ptuj, Bücherleserkabinett (Book Cabinet), was run by the printer Franc Anton Schütz between 1792 and 1795. The authorities ordered him to close the library and sell the books when he moved to Maribor after three years, so the records left are scarce.

When the Museum Society was formed in 1893, a science library was created to support its research. A lot of the credit for the library goes to the polymath and collector Franc Ferk, who donated his collections and library with some 4,000 books to the city of Ptuj in 1895. Ferk’s Museum Library became Ptuj’s central library, and was a foundation for Ptuj’s Study Library, established in 1948.

A number of German and Slovenian societies in the town had libraries that also served as public libraries before World War II, including the Folk Library, which opened in 1907 and was destroyed during the war in 1941.

History of the Ptuj Public Library

The beginnings of the modern-day Ivan Potrč Library, Ptuj go back to the first years after the World War II, when the Folk Lending and Reference Library was established in 1945, and the Study Library three years later.

In 1958, the two libraries merged into the Folk and Study Library with three departments (Study, Folk, Youth), which kept separate collections but now had joint management.

Different departments were scattered throughout the city for decades, until the library moved to the Mali grad complex in 2000.

It was named after the renowned local writer and dramatist Ivan Potrč (1913–1993, Štuki pri Ptuju) in 1993.