Critical review of the Competition Entries for the extension of Raczynski Library in Poznan. 

The Raczynski Library was founded by Count Edward Raczynski (1786-1845), a nobleman of the Wielkopolska region, social activist, patron of art and science, writer, and publisher. The opening of the Library took place on May 5th, 1829, in a building erected specially for Library purposes at what today is Wolnosci Square 19. Raczynski wished the first public library in the Wielkopolska region to be a center of Polish culture under Prussian rule.

He drew up a status defining the financial grounds of the institution, its organization, objectives and rules of book collection, in which he wrote: “I, the undersigned, overwhelmed with a desire to make the means to education and information accessible to everyone, hereby establish a public library in Poznan, the place of my birth. The library, along with the building erected (…) for its purposes, with all the books currently housed in the facility, and with funds allocated for remuneration, shall come into the perpetual possession of the city.  (…) The objective of the Raczynski Library is to make its reading room, which is soon to be opened, accessible to everyone, regardless of user’s status, on fixed days and hours.”