Book collection

Sandefjord Museums Library

The Sandefjord Museums library was a reference library for the Whaling Museum, the Maritime Museum and the Town Museum. The library was founded based on a reference library established in the 1920’s and 1930’s, by Consul Bjarne Aagaard in connection with his paper about whaling and research in the Southern Hemisphere. For many years, Bjarne Aagaard had permission from Lars Christensen to purchase all the literature he required for the library. Lars Christensen also purchased a lot of special literature on his travels. He saw how worthwhile it was to build up a reference library in support of the whaling industry, but his ambitions also lay in research.

From 1939, the Whaling Museum’s reference library was made available to the University in Oslo. An agreement was made according to which the Whaling Museum’s job was to keep the periodical collection in order, assuming the material was sent between Sandefjord and Oslo in a secure way. The most valuable works could, however, only be used at the Whaling Museum’s library in Sandefjord.

After the Second World War, the collection continued to expand and in 1985, numbered about 14,000 volumes, plus other relevant material on the subject matter. As well as the collection of literature relating to whales and whaling, other subjects covered are:-

The Arctic and Antarctic- expedition log books, fauna and animal life

Voyages of Discovery

Maritime History

Ship Building

Norwegian History

The Vikings

Handicraft Traditions


In 2003, the library’s collection was split up and the material relating to whaling and the polar regions were incorporated into the local town library. Enquiries can be made directly to the town library.

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