About the Repository

The Repository of Ethnographic Material of the Institute of Latvian History, University of Latvia, holds an extensive corpus of written ethnographic primary sources on traditional culture. This is a unique and diverse set of culture-historical material accumulated in the course of ethnographic fieldwork undertaken by researchers from the Institute of Latvian History since 1947: field notes, graphic material, photographic negatives, photographs, documents and copies of documents. The repository has (primarily) material relating to folk traditional material culture and lifeways in rural Latvia, for example vernacular architecture, household items, tools, rural transport, fabrics, dress, food and various occupations: agriculture, animal husbandry, crafts, fishing, etc. It contains material characterising family and seasonal traditions, folk applied art and many other fields. The material of the repository is utilised as primary source material in the University of Latvia and for research and projects by the staff of other scientific, cultural and educational institutions and students.

The wide geographical and temporal scope of the fieldwork is revealed by the list of collections and the electronic inventories of the collections. In order to alleviate searches, the data in the electronic inventories are systematized according to culture-historical region: Vidzeme, Kurzeme, Zemgale (together with the culture-historical area of Augšzeme/Sēlija) and Latgale. The inventories make it easier to ascertain in which particular country, district, parish and homestead data on a particular theme have been collected.

List of Collections

More detailed information is obtainable and the material itself can be accessed by visiting the repository, subject to the rules for utilising the repository. Alternatively, please send requests for information by email.


Address: Rūpniecības iela 10., Room 114., Rīga, LV-1010

Head of the Repository: Ilze Boldāne-Zeļenkova, Dr.hist.
phone +371 26593299, email: ilze.boldane-zelenkova@lu.lv

Keepers of collections:

Lilita Vanaga, Dr. hist. h. c.
email: lilita.vanaga@lu.lv   

Ilze Ulmane
email: ilze.ulmane@lu.lv