Photograph by L. Siewert. 1950s
The way the library grows is naturally determined by the needs of the time. In the post-war years the tasks it faced became significantly more complex and the demands put upon it grew. As early as 1949 the numbers of users, visits and books issued were over twice the pre-war 1940 figures.
The years since the war have not altered the Public Library's position within the national network of book repositories. The 1960s and 1970s were marked primarily by a strengthening of its role as a methodological and research centre for librarianship in the country. The 1976 statutes defined it as the national library of the Russian Federation fulfilling functions of significance to the whole Soviet Union.
The new status was reinforced by the "Temporary Regulations for the National Library of Russia" adopted by the federal government, which substantially expanded the library's rights and possibilities as the focal point for the country in its field of activity. The library obtained increased independence to determine the form of its activities and its direction of development. This applied to both scholarly matters and financial questions, including dealings with parties abroad. Moreover, the library has been entrusted with representing Russia's interests at an international level.
Principal Book Repository in Russia (1795 - 1813)
New Temple of Enlightenment (1814 - 1842)
Arrival of Dmitry Buturlin as Director (1843 - 1849)
Political Spring in Russia (1850 - 1859)
"Modern Era" (1860 - 1899)
Pre-Revolutionary Years (1900 - 1917)
Civil War and Building a Socialist Economy (1918 - 1940)
WWII. Siege of Leningrad. (1941 - 1945)
Second Half of the 20th Century (1946 - 2000 )