HUNGARICANA is a common website of Hungarian archives, museums and libraries, operated by the Library of Parliament, Hungary (Országgyűlési Könyvtár). The digitization was financed by the NKA (National Cultural Fund of Hungary) in the past years and we set ourselves the main goal to publish the cultural heritage of Hungary on one site: databases, records, documents, images, maps, etc. Now more than 100 institutes serve data, some of them from foreign countries. The main databases (see details in databases menu):
- Library: publication of archives, museums, libraries
- Postcards: more than 300.000 postcards
- MAPIRE: Historical Maps of the Habsburg Empire
- Maps: unique historical maps from the biggest Hungarian collections
- Documents: medieval charters, notarial records, criminal cases, civil law cases, etc.
- Old Hungarian Library (RMK)
Thanks to this project, the support of the Múzeumi Kollégium and the devoted cooperative work of contributing institutes, the Postcard database managed to cross its borders and to spread further than the walls of museums. Physical distance no longer means an obstacle to browse them, because collections are integrated in one common database, called Postcards. This initiation tries to encourage more institutes, like museums, archives, libraries but also individual collectors to share their holdings in order to make the Hungarian heritage available to everybody.
Another feature that makes Hungaricana special is the representation of historical maps thanks to the GIS (Geographic Information System) technology. The processed maps were on one hand from the Austrian State Archives: 1st and 2nd military surveys (1:28.800, map sheets drawn by hand) and on the other hand very detailed and precisely edited cadastral maps from the Hungarian and Croatian Archives (scale 1:2.880). Georeferenced maps can be browsed both in 2 and 3 dimensional, synchronized mode, moreover they can be placed on a present-day Google Map or Open StreetMap. Next to the military surveys and cadastral maps, the database contains old city maps of Buda and Pest, on which you can trace the infrastructural development of the Hungarian capital.
Hungaricana is unique also thanks to its meta-databases and pictures (copies of charters, urbariums, notarial records, maps etc. originally coming from the Hungarian Archival Portal) and especially because they can be browsed simultaneously with other databases from different museums (Herbarium Kitaibelianum) and libraries (Old Hungarian Library I.).
The formerly mentioned browsing option turns Hungaricana into a user-friendly, but highly effective and professional portal. The search engine allows the user to browse simultaneously among all the databases, consequently it is time efficient, moreover it lists all the relevant results, maybe even those ones that were previously unremarked by the user.
Hungaricana can be the major information source for a research, but also a collection of unseen documents that were kept in secret from the world, but now available for everyone.