Iron Library in Schlatt, Switzerland

The old books room.

The Iron Library is a true hidden gem. This special collection holds some of the world’s oldest and rarest books about the history of iron metallurgy, science, and technology. It’s located in the beautiful old Paradise Convent, the grounds of which are on the banks of the Upper Rhine.

The library was founded in 1948 by Georg Fischer Ltd. and has one of the world’s largest private collections in its subject area. The original collection at the library focused on works about iron and steel, but it has grown to include physics, mathematics, alchemy, natural history, and engineering.

There are over 47,000 books covering 750 years, many of them from the Renaissance and Enlightenment periods. These include medieval manuscripts with writings by Aristotle, a copy of Isaac Newton’s Principia (1687), and building plans for the Eiffel Tower just to name a few 

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