The Fund of Written Materials and the Non-Collection Fund of Copies of Archival Documents

This fund contains mainly original documents tracing the history of the Roma at home and abroad, from the past to the present day. It presents a variety of personal documents, letters, papers from conferences, seminars, materials about the activities of Roma associations, political organizations, prominent Roma and pro-Roma figures, etc. Important items include materials relating to the work of Miroslav Holomek (he was inter alia the Chairman of the Union of the Gypsy-Roma in 1969-1973), Vladimír Oláh (Roma poet and activist), Miroslav Dědič (he was also the director of the so-called Gypsy school in Květušín). In addition to written and printed documents, the fund also includes three-dimensional objects of various types (badges, medals etc.). Acquisitions of the fund are obtained mainly on the basis of field research and through purchases and donations from individuals. Currently the fund contains over 2000 acquisitions.

The Fund of Written Materials is closely linked with the Non-Collection Fund of Copies of Archival Documents. This collection includes copies of materials related to the history of the Roma which have been stored in the archives of the Czech Republic (primarily in the National Archive in Prague and the Moravian Archive in Brno) and partly also in foreign archives (e.g. the Slovak National Archive in Bratislava, the Archive of the State Museum in Auschwitz). Significant part of items is represented by materials relating to the early 20th century, the Roma Holocaust and the period after the Second World War. As far as other historical periods are concerned, the fund includes documents from the 18th and 19th  centuries. These are mostly materials from various levels of the state and local government (regulations, mandates and decrees). Other historical periods are reflected in the copies in a rather fragmentary manner. The fund grows every year primarily thanks to individual research of workers of the Museum of Romani Culture in various archives. At the moment the fund includes about 2600 acquisitions.

The collections of both funds are used primarily by students of secondary schools and universities in the Czech Republic, but also by professional researchers or journalists. Both funds played an important role in the preparation of the permanent exhibition and also during preparations of short-term thematic exhibitions of the MRC. To mention some of them: Svaz Cikánů-Romů – z historie první romské organizace v českých zemích (the Union of the Gypsy-Roma – from the history of the first Roma organization in the Czech Lands ) (2009) and Paťan – ma paťan / Věřte – nevěřte (Believe it or not)(2013).

Those who are interested can obtain more information from the relevant curator during research visits.

Curator: Mgr. Michal Schuster