Ministry of defence Republic of Serbia

Military Archive Day celebrated

A ceremony titled “Guardian of Military Heritage: 148 Years of the Military Archive” was held today in the Central Military Club in Belgrade to mark the Military Archive Day.
Congratulating the Military Archive members on their anniversary, State Secretary at the Ministry of Defence Nemanja Starović said that the Military Archive was one of the oldest institutions in our military and the custodian of the Serbian military heritage.

- The documents kept in the Military Archive, which is now a public archive at the Defence Policy Sector of the Ministry of Defence, testify to every chapter in the saga of the Serbian people. There is no better way to shed light on the history of a nation, to explain it and to bring it closer to younger generations than by publishing the results of the research of archival materials, and by presenting and describing historical sources - said State Secretary Starović, adding that in the past decade, the Military Archive had carried out a number of activities with the aim of promoting national values.
State Secretary Starović emphasized the immense value of the modern Military Archive as a custodian of archival material relating to the military and said that "one of the most important tasks is to provide an adequate building to house this institution, so that archival material could be preserved as a cultural asset of exceptional importance for future generations".
Speaking about the importance of this institution, the director of the Military Archive, Colonel Petar Ivanović, said that it was a unique archival institution recognized outside the borders of the Republic of Serbia. The Military Archive, he said, "stores 41 million sheets of archival material, with a total length of 7,500 metres and approximately 1,800,000 microfilm units".
  - The rich collection kept in our institution is not only property of great importance to the cultural heritage of our nation, but also archival and documentary material of exceptional importance for the security and defence of the Republic of Serbia. Therefore, the tireless researchers of the military past did not forget the treasures of the Military Archive even in times of the worst crises and challenges - said Colonel Ivanović.
The ceremony marking the Military Archive Day recalled the times when the awareness of the importance of collecting and preserving archival material necessary for writing military history started to develop, which dates back to the second half of the 19th century. Actor Vladimir Jocović, accompanied by Aleksandar Verbić, a Military Academy cadet, gave a short performance portraying an event that took place on June 3, 1865, when Jovan Dragašević put forward a proposal to the Minister of Defence to establish the Department of Military History. "Stanislav Binički", the Artistic Ensemble of the Ministry of Defence also performed at the ceremony.
On the occasion of its anniversary, the Military Archive has organized an exhibition and a multimedia display, which the guests could see today.

The Military Archive continues the tradition of the Third History Department of the Main General Staff, established on February 5, 1876, eleven years after the proposal by Jovan Dragašević, officer, scientist, professor, member of the Serbian Learned Society and honorary member of the Serbian Royal Academy, to form a History Department at the Ministry of Defence, whose task would be to collect materials for writing military history.