The Hans Christian Andersen Museum lies in the old city precinct in the heart of Odense. It is housed in what is in all probability the building where the world-famous writer of fairy-tales was born a house which, in 1908, opened as a museum dedicated to the life and work of the author. This makes it one of the world's oldest museums devoted to a single writer.
The museum has been completely redesigned in time for Hans Christian Andersen's bicentenary in 2005. We have opened new exhibitions, entrance and facilities for the public. See the museum online.
The new Hans Christian Andersen Museum takes you back to the era of 1805-1875, when the writers works were created. The museum provides a journey through the creative development of Hans Christian Andersen, expressed through his writings, drawings and paper cut-outs. In addition, the exhibitions delve deeper into the personality of Hans Christian Andersen, who had an unusual presence - both physically and mentally.
The library at the new Hans Christian Andersen Museum welcomes you to enter Andersen's extensive body of works, including the immense proliferation of his works all over the world today.
The new Hans Christian Andersen Museum is a living exploration following in the author's footsteps. You will enter the universe of Hans Christian Andersen where you can leafe throgh his books on a computer or listen to his fairytales at the many listening posts. The Museum Shop offers an extensive selection of books in several languages by and on Hans Christian Andersen. Selected items from the Museum Shop can be ordered via the Internet Shop.
The new Hans Christian Andersen Museum has all modern facilities.
Hans Christian Andersen's childhood home is also a museum and lies close to St. Knud's Cathedral in the middle of Odense. Here, he lived from the age of two until he was fourteen. Today, the small dwelling houses an exhibition on Hans Christian Andersen's links to his native city of Odense.
Colletions and organisation
Apart from the exhibitions, the museum holds a great collection of approx. 1.500 letters and 400 original manuscripts for his poems, 20 manuscripts for fairy tales as well as the huge manuscript for his autobiography, "The Fairy Tale of My Life". Also the collection contains a large number of original illustrations, made by international artists over the last 150 years.
The Fairy Tale of My Life. Manuscript.
The Hans Christian Andersen Museum is part of the organisation Odense City Museums, and more units within the organisation is concerned with the Andersen-museums in fields of exhibitions, conservation, marketing, etc. The research staff includes three curators, a part-time secretary and a various number of project-employees. They work in a special unit that is responsible for research on and presentation of Hans Christian Andersen as well as on the composer Carl Nielsen - Odense City Museums are also responsible for two Nielsen-museums.
The Andersen research-unit takes care of collecting and presenting the life and work of the writer as well as the Andersen-tradition in Denmark and internationally. In this way, the unit works as a documentary centre for the varied kinds of external interests in Andersen.
- Publishing of Andersen's correspondance, e.g. with 1) Louise Collin, the daughter of his benefactor Jonas Collin, and with 2) Jonna Stampe, the granddaughter of Jonas Collin.
- Research into international editions of Andersen with special emphasis on the English-American Andersen-tradition.
- Cooperation with The Royal Library in Copenhagen and The University of Southern Denmark (The Hans Christian Andersen Centre) in developing a comprehensive Andersen-site on the internet, Odense City Museums will digitalise the majority of the collections of manuscripts, letters, etc. Various databased information will also be accessible on the Internet, e.g. a database with Hans Christian Andersens travels.
Staff of the Andersen-unit of Odense City Museums
- Ejnar Askgaard, head of research unit Andersen/Nielsen, MA (Literature) 1994. Curator since 1997.
- Ane Grum-Schwensen, MA (Danish Literature and History) 1995. Curator since 1998.
- Solveig Brunholm, secretary since 1988. Service divided between Odense City Museums and the University of Southern Denmark (The Hans Christian Andersen Centre).
- Kasper Maaløe, part-time assistant.