Heritage

Manor House of Clapers (LIBRARY LA COOPERATIVA)


  • Casal dels Clapers Biblioteca
  • MALGRAT-144
  • MALGRAT-146
  • MALGRAT-154
  • MALGRAT-156
  • MALGRAT-158
  • MALGRAT-149
  • MALGRAT-150

16th century manor house

HISTORY

This manor house was built at the end of the 16th century to be the residence of the Clapers noble family. In the 17th century,it served as a dressing station and in the 18th century was bought by a Barcelona family, the Mercader, who joined the counts of Bell-lloc in the 19th century. In 1886,it housed the base of Casino Malgratense. In 1921, a worker-consumer cooperativewas founded. They bought the building, renovated and turned it into an important cultural centre with a café, ballroom, library and reading room.

In 1929, it was officially constituted as headquarters of La Malgratense Working Consumption Co-operative. At the end of January 1939, after the defeat of the republican army in the Battle of the Ebro, the troops passed through Malgrat de Mar. Around that time the Cooperative was pillaged and the venue was turned into a stable for the Italian cavalry that belonged to the national army.

From the second half of 1939 to 1951, the place only served as shop and bakery. After the post-war period, the shop was renovated and expanded and the kneading machine was fixed. Since the oven was installed, the farmers that were members of the cooperative could bring their own flour to the bakery in exchange for some tickets to purchase bread with a special price. Later, the café was used as headquarters of the Chess Club until 1963. The club was in charge of the café until 1966, when the venue was finally closed. In 1981, the Catalan Society Alt Maresme was constituted by various cooperatives. That resulted in a change in the institution, which became a consumer cooperative open to everybody.

In 1991, the City Council purchased the building and in 1998 reconverted it to the Municipal Library La Cooperativa that is still working today. The new installations were inaugurated on April 1, 2000, and were the result of the refurbishing and the transfer of the library that since August 16, 1970, was placed on the premises of the Public School Montserrat.

ARCHITECTURE

Manor house with a ground floor, first floor and attic.It is worth noting its portal with stone voussoirs and noble coat of arms, its balconies and sentry boxes on the corners. The building has undergone many modifications since it was built in the 16th century. The first construction had a square floor plan, three wings and a courtyard in the middle, initially dedicated to agriculture and storage, where there was a well. At the beginning of the 19th century, four big cubic structures were placed there to make oil (one of them was preserved and is now exhibited in the building). In the mid-19th century, five solid brick arches were built over the courtyard to support a passageway at the same height as the first floor. Finally, that open space was covered and the resultant space was turned into a ballroom in 1886 when the Casino Malgratense was based there. In 1929 the room was refurbished again to adapt to the needs of the La Malgratense Working Consumption Co-operative headquarters. The complete remodelling of Can Clapers to become the municipal library that is still working today happened in 1998, when the Town Hall promoted the change.