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João José da Graça Public Library and Regional Archive


João José da Graça - Horta Public Library and Regional Archives


The new space welcomes our visitors to not only the library in itself, but will also allow you to discover temporary exhibit rooms, a cultural shop, auditorium, amphitheatre, a multifunctional room, all framed by the beautiful terrace and garden of the estate Casa Bensaúde, where you can appreciate the contemporary art sculpture República, by Francisco Simões.

The Public Library and Regional Archive of Horta has its most remote origin in the Municipal Library, created in 1886 under initiative of the illustrious inhabitant of Faial João José da Graça, then president of the entity. This library, whose initial bibliographical estate was constituted by 1379 volumes, had its first regulation approved on the 11th of March of 1886.

Up to 1940, the library was set in the basement of the building of the City Hall of Horta, year in which it moved to Rua D. Pedro IV, nº 25, where it opened its doors on the 13th of June.

In 1965 the District Archive of Horta was created, through Act nº 46.350 of the 22nd of May, which delayed some years until it was applied. In 1977, in accordance with the Decree no. 2/77 of the 4th of May, next to this District Archive, a Public Library was created, with the designation of District Public Library and Archive of Horta. On the 10th of October of the same year, through the respective Act of Cession, the City Council of Horta delivered to this new institution, in the guise of deposit, the bibliographical funds of the ancient Municipal Library, as well as the Set Library nº 80 of the  Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation.

By February of 2005,  due to the advanced state of degradation of its original site, the library was transferred, provisionally, to the building of the former agency of the Bank of Portugal in Horta, while it awaited the conclusion of the remodelling works of Casa Bensaúde.
On the 23rd of April of 2008, his Excellency the President of the Regional Government of the Azores inaugurated the new premises of the Horta Public Libray and Regional Archives, granting it its new designation as João José da Graça Public Library and Regional Archives, thus honouring one of the proeminent sons of the island of Faial.  João José da Graça was not only the founding father of Horta's first municipal library, but also prioneered the press in the island of Faial in 1957 with the newspaper O Incentivo, and again in the island of Graciosa, in 1866, with the newspaper O Futuro.

Luis Manuel Pita São Bento



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Phone: (+351) 292 202 550

Fax: (+351) 292 391 344

Rua Walter Bensaúde, 14
P-9900 -142 Horta
Faial, Azores

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