The Krelage Collection (1667-1920)

Krelage catalogue

The Krelage Library was started in the middle of the nineteenth century by nurseryman Jacob Heinrich Krelage (1824-1901) at Haarlem and continued by his son Dr. Ernst Heinrich Krelage (1869-1956). The Krelage nursery was founded by grandfather E.H. Krelage (1786-1855) in Haarlem in 1811. The nursery was well known national and international for their flower bulbs, lilies and dahlia's. They gained more than 800 medals at world exhibitions and horticultural shows and delivered at many royal courts. Among the many new hybrids they've cultivated are the famous Darwin tulips. Part of their library was obtained by donation to the Wageningen University in 1916. This collection of 1200 books and journals on horticulture and botany reflects the speciality of the famous Krelage nursery and their broader interests: bulbs, ornamental plants, plant breeding and botany.

The Krelage family also started a collection of nursery catalogues wchich was donated to the University library. Later this collection had been owned by several institutes in Wageningen. Each added catalogues in their own field of interest. This greatly enlarged collection returned to the library in 2000. There was still a small Krelage collection of over 400 catalogues of dahlia nurseries in the Netherlands and abroad (1850-1925). Both collections were integrated to an even larger collectionof nursery catalogues.

The most rare and oldest parts of the Krelage Library were sold at an auction in 1948. Wageningen University Library also bought some botanical herbals and a collection of tulipomania pamphlets. These titles are incorporated in the main book collection of the Special Collections Department. The most precious books is a unique manuscript nursery catalogue, the Tulip Book of P. Cos. Go through the pages of this virtual copy and find the most expensive tulip at the height of the tulipomania!
The part of the Krelage library that was donated to the Wageningen University Library is now called the Krelage Collection.

You can search the Krelage collection in the catalogue of the Special Collections.

Oldest book in the Krelage collection

The oldest book in the current Krelage collection is a geographical description and history of Holland, Zeeland en Friesland, published in 1667.


Scriverius, P.; Brugman, P.
Oude en nieuwe beschryvinge van Holland, Zeeland en Vriesland: midsgaders de opkomste, geslachte, regeeringe en daden der selver graven, van Diederick den I. tot Philips den III : als mede een vervolgh van de voornaemste geschiedenissen ....
In 's-Gravenhage : gedruckt by Levyn van Dyck, 1667. - [22], 120, [2], 620, [4] p. pl. and maps [nl]

mail icon Wageningen Digital Library, 14 July, 2010