The Natural History Museum of Besançon located in the citadel retains the Herbarium of the former Institute of Botany and the University of Franche-Comté. This collection (early 19th century) represents a volume of half a million units. About 250,000 pieces formed the scientifically and historically exploitable background. On more than fifty herbaria, over half is remarkable.

The following collections are concerned by the attachment and the digitization as part of the E-ReColNat project:


  • Jean-Charles Grenier (realization 1843-1869) France and Belgium. 2,450 estimated pieces. Professor at the University of Besançon, and director between 1845 and 1875 of the Botanical Garden located at that time in the court of the old Medicine School.
  • Charles Magnier (realization 1878-1897) France. 8,000 estimated pieces. He’s known for creating and publishing two exsiccati collections. Flora Selecta Exsiccata et Plantae Galliae Septentrionalis et Belgii.


  • Charles-Louis Contejean (realization 1840-1890) France including Franche-Comté and Poitou-Charentes, Russia, many legacies of specimens of Algeria, Mediterranean, etc. 11,000 estimated pieces. One of the beautiful Herbarium of Franche-Comté.
  • Antonin Tronchet (realization 1950) France, including Franche-Comté. 2250 estimated shares. Professor at the University of Besançon, where he teaches botany and achieve a fruitful career in research in revolving movement of stems and tendrils (we have 41 films but certainly not all exploitable).
  • Gustaf Tisselius (realization 1895-1897) Northern Europe (Sweden, Germany). 150 shares. Swedish botanist. The collection consist of three bound volumes contained in titles boxes ‘Potamogetones Suecici Exsiccati’.

In addition to those, there are some other notable herbaria:

  • Philiberts Babey (realization period 1833-1894) France (especially Franche-Comté) worldwide p. ex. Chile, Russia, etc. 35,500 estimated pieces.
  • Eugène Michalet (realization 1856-1864) France, in particular Jura, 1,950 estimated pieces.
  • Paul Constant Billot (realization 1850-1860) France 12,200 estimated pieces etc. A lot of plants collected by Billot in Haguenau region have disappeared by now, there was an important role in the centuries repartition.
  • F. G. Schultz (realization 1858) Bas-Rhin, France, Poland. 2,000 pieces. Ready for attachment and digitization, beautiful herbarium;
  • Louis Hillier (realization 1943-1954) Bryophytes 1,500 pieces bequeathed to Besançon. Inventory done on paper sheet enclosed in an envelope for each folder.
  • Again Louis Hillier but for the herbaria (realization 1877-1889) France and Franche-Comté. About 9,000 pieces. Herbarium of higher plants with a note of the author “repaired Hillier 1933”.
  • Carestia (realization 1862-1899) Jura, France and Italy, 5,800 pieces. Herbarium very specific for Jura and Franche-Comté, some annotation from the author.
  • E. Poux (realization 1860-1910) France and Franche-Comté, about 9,300 pieces. Herbarium very specific with several details on the Besançon region.
  • H. Blanche (realization 1859-1866) Jura and France. 1,200 pieces. On the labels: Ex Herbarium Henrici Blanche (Dole, Jura).

The Citadel of Besançon