Baltazar (Baldo) Bogišić (1834-1908) was a legal historian of international renown, a polymath, and a member of the Yugoslav Academy of Sciences and Arts (today Croatian Academy of Sciences and Arts) from its very foundation.

The Collection was established in 1909/1912 by Bogišić’s sister, Marija Bogišić-Pohl. Since 1955 the collection has been part of the Institute for Historical Sciences of the Croatian Academy of Sciences and Arts in Dubrovnik, and since 1958 has been housed in the building of the Count’s (Captain’s) Palace in Cavtat.

Bogišić’s library contains 15,000 books and brochures, 200 journals, 66 incunabula, 164 manuscripts and 165 geographical maps. The collected archival material is divided into 39 thematic sections (mainly legal history, ethnography, and Bogišić’s extensive private correspondence including 10,092 items and 1,481 correspondents). Among the museum collection holdings, particularly important are the following: a highly-valued collection of old prints and drawings (8,185 sheets dating from the 16th to the 19th century); a collection of coins and medals from the Antiquity and later periods (2,674 items); a collection of archaeological artefacts; an exceptionally interesting collection of items bearing legal and symbolic relevance (around 150 items), unique in Croatia. Minor collections in Bogišić’s legacy include the works of fine arts and crafts, weapons, ethnographic and other items.

The Collection is accessible for scientific research, and a selection of artefacts is exhibited and open to the public.