Jadunath Bhavan Museum and Resource Centre

The Jadunath Bhavan Museum and Resource Centre was formally inaugurated in the renovated precincts of the house at 10 Lake Terrace on 1 February 2015. The house was earlier the residence of the historian Jadunath Sarkar (from 1938-1958), and later the place where the Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta began in 1973 and had all its offices and units until March 2000. The idea of lending a new lease of life to this building and creating a composite library, archives and display complex came out of a grant received in 2010 from the Ministry of Culture, Government of India, under its ‘Museum Scheme’. It has given the CSSSC a wonderful opportunity to have the premises professionally restored and redesigned, to bring back to the house a semblance of its former appearance and history, while also equipping it with all the contemporary amenities of a library, archive, documentation centre, office, conference and exhibition space. It has brought together under one roof the Centre’s special collection of rare books, journals, newspapers and photographs as well as its large analogue and digital archive of textual and visual material from 19th and 20th century Bengal and eastern India.

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The house was the former residence of the eminent historian, Sir Jadunath Sarkar (1870-1958). Sir Jadunath moved into this residence in 1938. The Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta (CSSSC), one of the early research institutes, rented this house and subsequently purchased it in 1973.

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The Jadunath Bhavan Museum and Resource Centre offers a series of facilities that are distributed over different floors of the four-storeyed house including archive, library, permanent display rooms and exhibition spaces, auditorium, meeting room, office spaces and faculty lounge.

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While the predominant body of the approximately 25,000 titles in this library are in Bengali, there is also a smaller body of books and periodicals here in Sanskrit, Urdu, Hindi, Marathi and Assamese. One of the main specialty of the library at JBMRC are the books and journals it holds from the collections of different scholars.

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The visual archive was launched in 1996, with the intention of documenting, cataloguing and collating the pictorial, print and photographic imagery of the late 19th and 20th centuries that lay with individual collectors, with the families of artists and photographers, with printing firms, or within small institutions and private trusts.

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