Regional Museum Litomerice
The first museum in Litomerice – the Museum of the Industrial Association – was founded in 1874. The academic painter Franz Krause, who also became the first director of the museum, greatly contributed to its establishment. The original intention of the museum was to document the life and craft culture of the past and to collect the artistic and technical products of the present. However, over time, especially after Kraus’ death in 1878, the museum began to stagnate and the museum’s collections became more of a collection of various objects and curiosities.
The city entered this situation and has been considering establishing its own museum for a long time. The new Stadtmuseum (City Museum) with a ethnographic focus was founded in 1910, the first director being the city archivist Heinrich Ankert. The Stadtmuseum took over the collections of the Museum of the Industrial Association, moving them from the damp and dark room of house no. 15 (House “Kalich”) to the renovated premises in the old town hall. However, a few days before the opening of the exhibition, an accident occurred when the facade of the museum building collapsed and a large part of the collections (especially glass, porcelain, paintings, coins) were destroyed. The collections that were saved were returned to the repaired original building in 1927 after countless relocations and were opened to the public in the same year.
In 1940, the museum took over the collection of the Diocesan Museum (these were mainly church objects that no longer served their original purpose). After the Second World War, the museum passed into Czech hands, the collections were expanded to include objects from the confiscations of displaced German inhabitants and abolished museums (District Museum for Prehistory, Museum of the Czech Museum Association). In 1955 the museum took over the collections of the former museum in Ustek. The accumulation of collections resulted in an unbearable spatial situation in the old building, which was eventually resolved by transferring the collections to the depository in Ploskovice in 1971. In 1980-82, a new permanent exhibition was gradually built, which is still in the museum.
In connection with the abolition of the districts in 2002, the museum became a contributory organization of the Usti Region and was renamed from the Regional Museum of National History to the Regional Museum in Litomerice. In addition to the permanent exhibition, visitors can also see short-term exhibitions from their own collections or on loan from other museums. The museum includes a branch of the Karel Hynek Macha Memorial, the so-called Macha’s room, which is located in the “Na Vikarce” house.
For more information about the Usti Region, from which this museum comes, click here and here.