Jyväskylä University Library - at the Heart of Campus

History of the Library

Library of the Finnish Teacher College 1863

The Library was initially set up by Uno Cygnaeus, the first director of the Finnish Teacher College. The Library’s collections grew mainly through donations. In the 1880s, the College moved into new premises on Seminaarinmäki, and the Library followed.

Figures from 1863:

  • Collections 446 items
  • Staff 1
  • Students 40

The Jyväskylä Research Library 1912

The Jyväskylä Research Library was founded on October 1st, 1912. The founder and first librarian (1912-1917) was professor Kaarle Martti Airila. He was followed by Niilo Jussila. The first full-time library director was Walter Appelqvist (1930-1941). The Library found its place in the former State granary (today the Rectorate building) in 1915.

In 1914, the Library bought the stacks of the second-hand book shop Minerva. From this collection, librarian Juhani Siljo picked out the books belonging to the Fennica-collection. A few years later these books formed the basis for the Library’s Depository Collection.

Figures from 1912:

  • Collections over 5 000 items
  • Staff 3

Depository Collection from 1919

The Depository Collection (Fennica) is the archive collection of Finnish publications. Since 1919, the Jyväskylä Research Library has received these items under the Finnish Legal Deposit Act. Thanks to this act, the Library has acquired a valuable collection of domestic literature.

Library of the Jyväskylä College of Education 1936

The Library of the Jyväskylä College of Education was founded in 1936 when the state took over the Research Library. Until the mid 1950s the library concentrated mainly on building its collections. The library directors were Nils Berndtson (1945-1953) and Pekka Raittila (1954-1962).

Figures from 1937:

  • Collections 120 000 items
  • Students 227

Jyväskylä University Library 1966

When the Jyväskylä College of Education became Jyväskylä University, also the Library’s name changed. The University Library was first situated in the wing of the University’s main building designed by Alvar Aalto. In 1974, the Library moved in to the new library building designed by Arto Sipinen.

Figures from 1966:

  • Collections 338 000 items
  • Staff 17
  • Students 2 748

Information technology has dramatically changed library and information work also at Jyväskylä University Library in the last four decades:

  • micro fiche catalogues 1980's
  • JYKDOK catalogue 1985-
  • VTLS library system 1990
  • CD ROM databases early 1990’s
  • Internet and the Library’s first homepage 1994
  • FinELib (national e-resource consortium) 1997-
  • Voyager library system 2001-
  • NELLI 2004-

The library directors through the years:

  • Chief Librarian Eeva-Maija Tammekann (1965-1980)
  • Chief Librarian Oili Kokkonen (1980-1996)
  • Chief Librarian Kai Ekholm (1997-2002)
  • Chief Librarian Pirjo Vatanen (2002-2010)
  • Director Kimmo Tuominen (2010-2013)
  • Director Ari Muhonen (2013-)

Statistics of the Library

The annual statistics of Jyväskylä University Library are collected in the Statistics Database of Scientific Libraries from year 2002-.

The statistics of the scientific libraries give a general view of the resources, collections and services of Finnish scientific libraries.

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