Sucre is home to the National Archives and Library of Bolivia (or Archivo y Biblioteca Nacionales de Bolivia). The joint National Archive and National Library holds around 114,000 volumes and serves as Sucre’s main public library.
The library and archive, established in 1836, holds many important documents dating from the time of “Audiencia de Charcas” colonial high court. The oldest document in the collection is a royal provision dating from 1546. Work is currently underway to digitize these important colonial records.
The library holds over 1000 titles printed between 1530 and 1804 including works on theology, philosophy and other historical manuscripts. It also holds the most complete collection of Bolivian newspapers published between 1825 – 1907.
The Central Bank of Bolivia has assisted in funding the library in line with an act passed in 1986. The Central Bank established a Cultural Foundation to oversee this funding, and the foundation has just recently announced funding to purchase a 14 thousand square meter plot of land on which a new home for the National Archives and Library of Bolivia will be constructed. The building is planned to be around 8,200 meters square. The site has already been surveyed and a competition to select the final design of the library will be conducted in 2014. Construction is expected to begin in 2015. The foundation is also funding an extension to Sucre’s historic Casa de la Libertad.
The National Archives and Library is located on Calle Dalence between Nicolas Ortiz and Bustillos, one block from Plaza 25 de Mayo.