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Library profile

Württembergische Landesbibliothek (WLB)

Württemberg State Library is the largest academic library in Baden-Württemberg.

The WLB is the foremost institution for regional and supra-regional information and literature supply in Baden-Württemberg. About 6 million media items are held ready in its stacks and reading rooms for research, teaching, further vocational training and general education. These include books, newspapers and journals, manuscripts, rare books, music scores, as well as maps, prints, posters, letters from the front, photographs, microforms and electronic media. Over 1 million media items are borrowed per year.

The WLB cooperates with partners in the cultural, scientific and commercial sectors both within Germany and abroad. It offers a manifold programme of exhibitions and lectures, in which it is supported by the Württembergische Bibliotheksgesellschaft – Freunde der Württembergischen Landesbibliothek e.V. (Friends of Württemberg State Library).

It enjoys a reputation as both a lively centre of learning and as an active cultural institution far beyond the Stuttgart region.

Special Collections

The WLB houses collections of worldwide significance: more than 15,000 medieval and modern manuscripts, rare books such as incunabula, the ‚Hofbibliothek’ (court library), treasures of modern book art, one of the largest bible collections worldwide with bibles in over 400 languages and dialects, the central archives for literature and research on Friedrich Hölderlin and Stefan George, outstanding printed music as well as a large collection of maps and views of Baden-Württemberg. The Library of Contemporary History and its archives form one of the largest specialized libraries for 20th century history.

Special functions

The WLB serves as a deposit library for deposit copies published in Württemberg (since 1817) and Baden-Württemberg (since 1964). It collects literature concerning Baden-Württemberg, its towns and personalities, and records them in the regional bibliography.
In cooperation with the Badische Landesbibliothek Karlsruhe and the Landesarchiv Baden-Württemberg the WLB collects, indexes and archives both websites and internet publications from or pertaining to Baden-Württemberg in BOA: Baden-Württembergisches Online-Archiv.
Since 1969 the WLB has supplied literature for the humanities, the social sciences and for economics at the University of Stuttgart.
It implements many projects on  book history and plays a major role in the supra-regional provision of literature on contemporary history (from 1914 onward).


Württemberg State Library offers a wide range of services:

Historical highlights

In 1765 Duke Carl Eugen of Württemberg founded the first public library in Ludwigsburg. In 1777 it was transferred to Stuttgart. In 1803, as a result of secularization, there was a large  increase in holdings resulting from the dissolution of the monastic libraries, mainly those of Upper Swabia. In 1883 the library received a prestigious new building at today’s Konrad-Adenauer Strasse.
On the night of 12./13. September 1944 the State Library was bombed, resulting in the destruction of half a million books. In 1946 the  ‚Württembergische Bibliotheksgesellschaft’ (Friends of  Württemberg State Library) was founded, which has greatly aided collection development in a valuable and effective manner. In 1970 the WLB moved to its new building in the old location at Konrad-Adenauer-Strasse.

Modern age of information

In 1984 the first online loan-system was installed and in 1988 the change to cooperative online cataloguing was made.
Modern information technology has been gradually introduced: from the Stuttgart Online Catalogue to the digitalised card catalogues, from Regional Database Information (ReDI) to the digital reference service.
The 21st century has seen the transformation of the WLB into a modern literature and information centre.


Information Centre:
Tel.: +49 711/212-4454 or 4468
Fax: +49 711/212-4422
Contact form

Tel.: +49 711/212-4424

Last update: 30.11.2020   © 2020 WLB
Württembergische Landesbibliothek - Konrad-Adenauer-Str. 10 - 70173 Stuttgart - Telephone +49 711-212-4454