While preparing for the participation in the 5 th International Symposium of the Society of the Friends of Globes, held in Vienna in 1977, I realized how difficult it was to find Polish globes produced in the 2nd half of the 19 th century, even in the 20-year Interwar Period. It was confirmed by a poll arranged in grammar schools in 1976 nd carried out by the Polish Geographical Association, branch in Wrocław. Similarly, our scientific literature lacked publications devoted to production and keeping records of globes. The Subcommittee fo Globe Cartography of the Polish Geographical Association suggested an idea to establish a collection comprising all polish globes, both historic and contemporary ones, in order to generate them in one place so that they could be compared with one another when necessity arises. Regardlss th already existing collection in the Jagiellonin University Museum, the Wincenty Pol Museum in Lublin (formerly, the branch of the Regional Museum, presently, the branch of the Museum of Lublin) undertook the task of creating such a collection which would preserve historic globes, not only Polish ones but also those produced in western Europe since 1492. Owing to great enthusiasm and commitment of Władysława Zossel-Wojtysiak, in charge of the Wincenty Pol Museum, the official opening ceremony of the collection comprising more than 40 globes took place on September 13, 1984 .
Currently, the Museum exhibits over 110 globes including 3 from the 19 th century. Among the group of 20 th century globes there are twelve which date back to theInterwar Period. Especially, the FPN, based in Warsaw, the producer of didactic materials, proved to be extremely helpful and contributed, free of charge, own products for the Museum’s disposal. These globes are based on the maps elaborated and publihed by the PPWK, edited by Antoni Szymanek. Thirty three globes, among which the oldest is the physical globe from 1967 in the scale of 1 : 80 000 000, have been donated by the FPN. Another eighteen historic globes have been contributed by schools from the following locations: Biskupice, Klemensów, Kłobuck, Lublin, Łowicz, Olecko, Ołobocze, Piotrków, Ruda Huta, Rozłopy, Rybczewice, Wola Skromowska, Wólka Kańska, Zambrów. In return for donated globes, the above - mentioned schools have been given new ones. The museum collection has subsequently been enriched with exhibits from the Cartographic Workshop of the M. Curie- Sklodowska University in Lublin, the PPWK and the Teaching Materials Wokshop in Poznań; the latter one supplied the Museum with tellurium. The individual donors are basically citizens of Lublin: Helena Uhorczakowa, Stefania Gurba, Marta Denys, Piotr Horbowski-Zaranek, Krzysztof Wojciechowski, Józef Wojtanowicz, Jan Lipkowski from Radom, Andrzej Baranowski from Marki-Pustelnik, Bartłomiej Marszałek and Janina Piasecka from Wrocław.
The Museum has not got in its possession all editions of produced globes but the existing collection is representative enough of the history of globes published in Polish. Unfortunately, what it lacks is the oldest Polish globe entitled The Globe for Use in Schools in the scale of 1: 70 000 000 and 1: 80 000 000, published in Nuremberg. In case of globes based on maps published by the PPWK, the fact that certain editions are lacking is of little importance as subsequent editions have been updated and differences, if any, could be described as minor. Edition numbering system does not indicate the changes to the content but rather the date related sequence: one year - one number of edition.
Apart from physical, political and political-physical illuminated globes, the Musem also displays very rare and unique specimens, like e.g. the globe with physical content and with relif orography, globe- money-box according to the idea of Prof. Krause, commercial - communication globe, landscape - zoological globe, political one with the routes indicating land discoveries of, among others, Columbus or Magellan, inductive globe (sphere imitating the inside of the crust of the Earth). Other globes are also available such as folding globes, i.e. cardboard maps which may be joined, pieced together or glued in order to obtain a globe. What draws our attention is the tellurium with a fixed small globe of diameter of 7,1 cm, model showing movements of the Earth and the Moon towards the Sun, serving to demonstrate illumination of the Earth in various times of the day and year, phases of the Moon, eclipses of the Sun and the Moon.
The Museum also takes pride in numerous examples of scintific literature, globe maps and other materials connected with globe cartography collected here.
Currently, we are offered a wide spectrum of globes produced by private, domestic manufacturers as well as companies from Denmark, Hungary and Italy. Some of them are truely original thanks to the applied from and subject matter. Itallows us to hope that the interest in globes - the most distinctive symbols of geography, shall retain its intensity and creativity.
- O MUZEUM