Archives of Zemplén
The Archives of the county Zemplén can be found on the floor of the north wing of the countyhouse constructed between 1754 and 1768. The material gathered until that time was first placed in two rooms in baroque cabinets compying with the taste of the age, in curved drawers in three rows at the bottom, on open, later numbered shelves above them – all these are the magnificent creations of the master cabinetmaker József Speck. At Ferenc Kazinczy’s initiative – who worked in the Archives between 1815 and 1831 – three new rooms were added to the Archives, and the doors of the five rooms were opened to each other. The county’s complete collection of writings from the age of feudalism (from the 16th century to 1849) is preserved here even today. The imposing wall units covering the entire wall surface, and the numbered shelves covered with waxcloth blankets, the iron windows, iron doors are a beautiful sight, and they evoke the atmosphere of the 18-19th century Archives in a unique way in the country. New storerooms were made for the increasing number of writings on the corridor next to the Archives from the beginning of the 20th century, and later on the ground floor, too. The current network of storerooms had been completed by the 1970-1980s, and they are now preserving the written history of the settlements of Zemplén – which remained on the territory of Zemplén county (which existed until 1950) and today’s Hungary – in 14 rooms. There are written references in this archive dating back even to 1271. The logical order of the county’s Archives, that were placed in the building of the countyhouse was developed by the chief notary and famous historian Antal Szirmay in as early as 1777. One of his famous successors was Ferenc Kazinczy, the poet and language reformer, who made his home in Széphalom the “centre of the Hungarian intellectual life. The entire size of the documented materials of the Archives is more than 2100 linear meters. Since archives became more open, this vast amount of files is researched 400 to 600 times every year.
Monday to Friday: 08:00 to 15:30