South Africa - Libraries and museums

The National Library of South Africa is made up of the State Library in Pretoria (787,000 volumes) and the South African Library in Cape Town (750,000 volumes). The State Library is the official repository for UN publications, World Bank publications, GATT (General Agreement of Tariffs and Trade) publications, and International Labor Organization publications dealing with South Africa. The University of Witwatersrand's main collection holds over one million volumes. Major public libraries are located in Johannesburg (850,000 volumes) and Cape Town (1.4 million volumes). There is an extensive public library system holding more than 16 million volumes in total.

The Kaffrarian Museum in King William's Town has imposing collections of indigenous animals. The National Museum in Bloemfontein contains an ictidosaur skeleton and the Florisbad human fossil skull. The East London Museum houses the first coelacanth to be caught (the entire family had previously been thought to be extinct). The South African National Gallery is in Cape Town. Founded in 1871, it houses an extensive European collection and well as one of Africa's finest collections of contemporary African art. The South African Cultural History Museum is also in Cape Town, as is the Castle Military Museum, which opened in 1995. Robben Island, 12 kilometers from Cape Town, is a former prison and is now a museum. Johannesburg has several archaeological museums as well as the University Art Galleries of the University of Witwatersrand. Pretoria houses the Kruger Museum, chronicling the life of Paul Kruger; the Natural Cultural History Museum; and the Museum of Anthropology and Archaeology.

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