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Library and archives

The Swiss Open-Air Museum has a comprehensive library and extensive picture archive. The Swiss farmhouse research archive is also located at the museum. As well as an extensive handicrafts library, the Ballenberg Course Centre also houses a colour library that is unique in Switzerland.

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Eingangsbereich Süd zum Bauernhaus aus Wila ZH.

LibraryReference library Swiss Open-Air Museum Ballenberg

The library of the Open-air Museum is located in the administrative building by the West Entrance. Access to the picture archive is through the library. Interlibrary loans are not possible. Please make a reservation a minimum one week in advance if you wish to use it. Our guidelines for visiting the library can be found at the bottom of the page.

Die Präsenzbibliothek im Freilichtmuseum Ballenberg.

Description of the library collection

  • Period of creation of the library collection: from 1968
  • Architecture, focussing on Switzerland, rural
  • Domestic buildings research, history, local history
  • Folklore, focussing on the history of everyday life in Switzerland
  • Handicrafts, focussing on traditional handicrafts in Switzerland
  • Agriculture, focussing on traditional agriculture in Switzerland

Library collection

More than 10,000 volumes, 20 magazine subscriptions, 100 digital media (audio and film), 2 metres of other relevant documents.

Image archive collection

90,000 analog images, 50,000 digital images, focus on documentation of construction of the museum building and museum operations. A selection of high-quality, evocative images of Ballenberg can be used free of charge on our media page. When using other documents from the picture archive of the Open-Air Museum Ballenberg, the guidelines for the Use of Services apply (see end of page).

Use of image materials

If you would like to use individually collated images, please contact us in good time. After we have put together a selection of images for you in accordance with the criteria in the access conditions, please fill out the application for reproduction authorisation, including conditions of use.

Swiss Open-Air Museum

Museumsstrasse 100
CH-3858 Hofstetten bei Brienz

+41 33 952 10 30

Opening hours

11 April to 27 October 2024
10 am to 5 pm daily

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