Numismatourist Howard Berlin filed this report from Krakow, Poland. Thanks! -Editor
My second trip of the year took me to Krakow, Poland in March. The morning of my second day was spent at the Numismatic Room at the National Museum
in Krakow's Emeryk Hutten-Czapski Museum, a branch of the National Museum in Krakow. The building sort of reminded me of the Numismatic Museum Athens, whereby
it was transformed from the residence of its prolific collector (archeologist Heinrich Schliemann) to a museum. This museum was the home of Emeryk
Hutten-Czapski (1828-1896), a Polish Count, scholar and numismatist.
The Numismatic Room was established in 1883 and following Czapski's death, his widow in 1903 donated the entire collection, which along with subsequent
future benefactors, became the repository of the most representative collection of Polish coins, medals and banknotes. Upon arrival, I was met by the museum's
head of numismatics, Prof. Jaroslaw Bodzek, who is also on the faculty of the Department of Archeology at Jagiellonian University.
Czapski's original wooden 18th-century coin cabinet
A view of one of the first-floor galleries
A view of a second-floor gallery adjacent to Czapski's study
Currently, the museum boasts a collection of approximately 109,000 objects. It comprises items such as about 9,000 antique coins, 60,000 Polish and foreign
coins, 7,000 medals, 2,500 religious medallions, and 19,000 banknotes. It also has a numismatic library of about 3,000 books. The numismatic galleries occupy
both floors of the building. The well-curated displays were in both Polish and English.
100 Numismatic Rarities at the National Museum in Krakow (2012). 9"x12" casebound w/dust jacket, 226 pages in Polish and English. ISBN
Well Guarded Collection (2013). Joana Popielska (Ed.). 8"x8" paperback, 44 pages in Polish and English. ISBN 978-83-7581-116-2
As it often turns out, my museum visits often have me leaving with one or more (often heavy) books given to me as gifts by the museum. This time, I
received two books, one of which was a massive "coffee table" book about the 100 Numismatic Rarities at the National Museum in Krakow, which weighed about 2.9
pounds (1.3 kg). A second, but smaller book was about the museum, its numismatic history and collection. If that wasn't enough, I also received a museum
souvenir which took me about a minute to figure out what it was - it is an 8 GB thumb drive. The USB connector extends and retracts by twisting the top disc
Wayne Homren, Editor
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