The castle in Bytów

The castle in Malbork

The castle in Sztum

The castle in Kwidzyn

The castle in Olsztyn

The castle in Nidzica

The castle in Ostróda

The castle in Lidzbark Warmiński

The castle in Kętrzyn

The castle in Ryn

The castle in Gniew

The History Museum of Lithuania Minor

The Castle Museum

Museum of the History of the Bagrationovsk Region


The History Museum of Lithuania Minor...

The beginning of the Museum is related to the events of 1924, when locally educated Lithuanians and Germans founded the Society of the Regional Museum of Klaipeda ("Memeler Landesmuseum e.V."). The 20th June 1924, the day of the General Meeting of this Society - sometimes named the "Constitutive Meeting" - is regarded as the birthday of the Museum. Unfortunately, after some years the Germans left the Society and the Museum management. The Museum didn't have a permanent premises and the displays were not abundant. The last record on the Museum's diary is dated 12th March 1939. The major part of the pre-war collection was lost and merely a few dozen of the old displays (mainly archaeological) are still kept by the Museum.
During 1948 there were calls in the local press of Klaipeda to recreate Klaipeda's Museum. On 5th February 1949, G. Christoforova was appointed as first Director of the Museum and in March J. Alseika as the first researcher. The Museum was named the Museum of Regional Ethnography of Klaipeda. On 17th June 1988, the Executive Committee of Klaipeda decided to rename the Museum of Regional Ethnography of Klaipeda as the Museum of the History of Lithuania Minor. Since 1992 the Museum has been managed by Dr. Jonas Genys.

The exposition's stands contain archaelogical finds, old maps, coins, pfotos, postcards, scale models of town, thank to which in an hour or an hour and half one may get acquainted with ten-thousand-year history of this area. The ethnographic exhibits reflect household and traditions of native inhabitants - the Lietuvininkai - and dramtic relation between the Lithuanians and the Germans. Many exhibits may be called without any hesitation as unique.
As of October 2000 the museum collection includes 78,381 items. The major part of the collection is made up of about 29,500 archaeological items. Over 10,000 exhibits present the ethnographical collection with items such as household appliances, wooden sculptures, furniture, textiles and blacksmithing articles. Over 10,000 documents are also in the collection. The iconography collection includes over 8,000 photographs and negatives as well as 661 postcards. The numismatic collection consists of 1,208 items including 426 coins and 720 banknotes. The printed collection of books, calendars and periodicals consists of over 5,200 exhibits. The small cartographic collection includes 80 items. Exhibition of the History of Lithuania Minor:
1. Prehistory of the region,
2. Conquests of the German order. The formation of Lithuania Minor,
3. Cartography,
4. Numismatics,
5. Klaipeda in the first part of the XX century,
6. Traditional culture,
7. The city of Klaipeda and surrounding regions during 1939 - 1960.
The Museum organises scientific seminars and conferences and the staff of the Museum participate in similar scientific forums in Lithuania and abroad. In 1995 the Museum organised two conferences, "Klaipeda and Lithuania in the Historical Changes of the XX century" and "The Reformation in the Lithuanian Grand Principality and Prussia". These conferences were organised jointly with the Centre of Evangelic Theology and the Centre of History of West Lithuania and Prussia at Klaipeda University. In 1998 the conference "The Latest Research into Lithuanian Castles" was arranged jointly with the Centre of History of West Lithuania and Prussia at Klaipeda University and the Department of the Protection of Cultural Heritage and in 1999 the conference "The Lithuanian Coast and its Problems of Identity" was organised jointly with Klaipeda University and the See-coastal Regional Park.

The main partners of the History Museum of Lithuania Minor are the Museum of the East Prussian Region in Lueneburg, the East Prussian Centre of Culture in Ellingen, Germany and the Varmia and Mozur Museum in Olstyn, Poland. The closest contacts are with colleagues from Germany as both the parties strive for the same objective - the restoration and conservation of the historic past of the same region. All the joint projects and exhibitions are related to Lithuania Minor, to the people of this region, their life and creative work.
The Museum has published a collection of articles on the history of the region entitled "The History and Culture of the West Balts" with volume I published in 1992 and volume II in 1995. The process of accumulating material for the third volume is continuing. The conclusions of scientific investigations of the Museum are published in national and foreign scientific journals. The most significant publication of recent years is a monograph by Zita Geniene and Jonas Genys "Varniai Priests' Seminary".
The History Museum of Lithuania Minor arranges lessons for school children entitled "Living History" in a program entitled "Old trades and ways of life of the Baltic Tribes Kurąiai, ®emaičiai and Lietuvininkai". The program consists of five independent topics:
1. Ancient Ceramics of the Baltic Tribes,
2. Ancient Weaving and Flax Processing in Klaipeda Region,
3. Ancient Jewellery and Brass Casting of the Baltic Tribes,
4. Blacksmithing and Metal Processing in the Settlements of Ancient Kurąiai,
5. Daily Life and Clothing of the Inhabitants of Klaipeda at the End of the XIX Century and the Beginning of the XX Century.The lessons of "Living History" begin on 15 September and continue throughout the year.

The History Museum of Lithuania Minor
Didľioji Vandens St. 6, LT-91246 Klaipeda,
tel. 00370 46 41 05 24,

The project is co-financed from the funds of the European Regional Development Fund, under the framework of the Lithuania,
Poland and Kaliningrad Region of the Russian Federation Neighbourhood Programme INTERREG IIIA.