The Monacensia in the Hildebrandhaus constitutes the literary memory of the city of Munich. Since 1977, the institute of the Münchner Stadtbibliothek (Munich City Library) has been housed in the former villa of the sculptor Adolf von Hildebrand (1847-1921).
The collection currently comprises around 300 literary estates and collections of writers closely associated with Munich. These include Annette Kolb, Frank Wedekind, Oskar Panizza, Franziska zu Reventlow, Ludwig Thoma, Lena Christ, Oskar Maria Graf, Therese Giehse, Gisela Elsner, Herbert Achternbusch, Herbert Rosendorfer etc. With the complete estates of Klaus Mann and Erika Mann, with over 800 letters and manuscripts by Thomas Mann as well as with numerous archival documents by Golo, Monika, Michael and Elisabeth Mann, Monacensia is an internationally renowned research centre on the Mann family. A further focus of the collection is on Munich folk artists and cabaret artists such as Liesl Karlstadt, Bally Prell, Roider Jackl, Erni Singerl and Jörg Hube.
The Monacensia includes a public research library with a unique collection of books on the subject of Munich. The Monacensia presents its holdings to the public through diverse forms of literature mediation such as changing special exhibitions, guided tours, readings, lectures and seminars.
The Hildebrandhaus is an important villa of the Prinzregenten era (1886-1912). It was the residence of the sculptor and art theoretician Adolf von Hildebrand (1847-1921), commissioned by the City of Munich in 1890 to build the Wittelsbach Fountain on today's Lenbachplatz. The large fountain project as well as subsequent commissions consolidated Adolf von Hildebrand's reputation as "prince among artists", who established himself in Munich with the construction of his representative residential and studio building on the Isarhochufer in Munich. Hildebrand himself produced the design and building plans, while the architect Gabriel von Seidl undertook the execution of the building, which was completed in 1898. In its immediate vicinity are the Villa Stuck and the Friedensengel.
In 1974, the City of Munich acquired the Hildebrandhaus with funds from the newly created Monument Protection Fund of the Free State of Bavaria and saved the artist's villa from imminent demolition. After the restoration of the building, the Monacensia collection found a suitable home. At the beginning of 2013, the Hildebrandhaus was again to undergo a phase of rebuilding and extension. The artist's villa was restored to its original state and it was made more accessible to the public than before through a more attractive sojourn quality. After its reopening on 9 December 2016, the Monacensia will present an up-to-date permanent exhibition on Thomas Mann's time in Munich, from the Bohemian era to exile and on the history of the Hildebrandhaus.