Self-guided or guided tours of the recently renovated Public Library Study Room

Discover the study room of the recently renovated public library

© Ville de Chalon-sur-Saône

This place housed from 1822 to 1845, in a new wing, the civil court.
Since 1845, the municipal library has been installed there.
In the adult study room, 25 metres long and containing
17,000 volumes, from woodwork to iconic sculptures
made in the 18th century for the library of the former Cistercian abbey of La Ferté (commune of Saint-Ambreuil) are visible. Confiscated by the Revolution, like the books they contained, they were first deposited on the site of the former college (present high school
Émiland-Gauthey), which later became the first library of Chalon-sur-Saône. They were later reused when the library was installed on the site of the former Carmelite convent.
The rectilinear pilasters of these woodwork are decorated with acanthus leaves at the top, geometric decorations and florets inside the pilasters. In the upper part of the shelves one can observe carved bands, some of which carry allegorical representations.
Originally, the themes of the sculptures corresponded to the contents of the shelves. A celestial globe and a terrestrial globe of the eighteenth century, both manuscripts and made by the Capuchin monk Louis Legrand, complete the decor. The globe indicates for each country the characteristics of the climate, the relief, the populations, the fauna and the flora: North America is «unknown land», but thanks to the reports of the Spanish Jesuit missions since the seventeenth century, South America is full of annotations. The celestial globe is in the same way a witness of the astronomical knowledge of the eighteenth century; it has the particularity of representing the constellation of the «Chesne of Charles II», invented by the astronomer Edmond Halley in homage to King Charles II of England who hid for twenty-four hours in a tree after his defeat at Worcester in 1651.
In 2020-2021, the study room of the municipal library benefited for several months from essential work to preserve and preserve its collections as well as possible, under the direction of the Architecture department of the City of Chalon.
In addition to ensuring the preservation of the collections, all the redevelopments have been designed so that the Chalonnais can visit and use this room in better conditions.
The main threat was the sudden and repeated change in temperatures. In order to keep the amplitudes stable in all seasons, the heating and air conditioning system has been completely redone.
The lighting, which released too many lumens, was renewed and replaced by a new LED lighting allowing to play on the differences of brightness and thus create several atmospheres within the same room.
The tables in the study room were equipped with electricity to connect modern and adapted computers and reading lamps.
Humidity being one of the worst enemies of paper, background work on hygrometry was also carried out.
Finally, the ceiling has been painted and the parquet floor renovated.

About the venue

Hôtel de ville 71100 Châlon-sur-Saône
  • Lieu de spectacles, sports et loisirs
  • ,
  • Villes et Pays d'art et d'histoire

Since 1845, the local library(bookcase) occupies a part(party) of the old(former) Law courts. The study hall presents woodworks realised in the XVIIIth century for the library(bookcase) of the Abbey of Ferté. A celestial globe and a terrestrial globe of the XVIIIth century, both manuscripts, supplement the decoration(set). The room of loan is installed(settled) in the chorus(choir) of the old(former) chapel of the Carmelites.

Bibliothèque municipale de Châlon-sur-Saône © Ville de Chalon-sur-Saône