In the present study the chemical composition of the essential oils from aerial parts of Centaurea tomentella Hand.-Mazz. and C. haussknechtii Boiss. collected in Turkey was evaluated by GC and GC-MS. The main components of C. tomentella L. were hexadecanoic acid (19.7%), caryophyllene oxide (6.6%) and spathulenol (4.8%) whereas C. haussknechtii was rich in hexadecanoic acid (26.2%), (Z,Z)-9,12-octadecadienoic acid (19.3%), heptacosane (5.3%) and nonacosane (5.1%). Antibacterial and antifungal activities against some microorganisms infesting historical art craft, were also determined.