It has moved several occasions, gradually expanded many times and now offers seventeen permanent exhibitions, truly a paradise for fans of technology. This year, the Technical Museum in Brno is celebrating its 60th anniversary.
Even though it is celebrating its 60th anniversary this year, the Technical Museum’s roots go back to the 1930s. At that time, the Archive for the History of Industry, Trade and Technical Work was established as an independent department of today’s National Technical Museum. And this Archive is the immediate predecessor of the Technical Museum in Brno according to spokeswomen Zuzana Doubravová.
In the 1950s, the forthcoming museum started to build its own collection. On the first of January 1961 came the moment of independence, when the people of Brno acquired their own Technical Museum, which became an independent institution.
Until the 1990s, its main building was located in Josefská Street in the city centre. But then came years of uncertainty. “During the church restitution, the museum lost its main building, the monastery of St. Voršila. Besides, in 1996, due to emergency dimensions, it had to close its exhibits and vacate the buildings in Josefská and Orlí streets, “Doubravová recalled.
The people of Brno had to wait seven long years for the reopening of the Technical Museum. After the reconstruction of the Tesla building in Králové Pole, thirteen new exhibitions and the Technical Games Room opened in 2003. The number of permanent collections has grown in the meantime.
Although the museum is now closed due to anti-coronavirus measures, its enthusiasts will have many opportunities to celebrate the anniversary this year. “At the end of August, we are preparing a celebration, an all-day event in the museum complex. We will also commemorate the 60th anniversary at the events we plan for this year, “said Doubravová.
In addition to special birthday events in the 60th year of independent existence, the museum faces other significant events. “In September, we will open a large exhibition of well-known watches from the Prim brand,” Doubravová promised.
The museum has several specialties in its collections. Probably the most famous and the most important object is the Caroline steam tram from 1889. “In our collections, however, we also have a Tesla BS242E transmission electron microscope, a functional prototype of an EMA electric car, a 1919 Austro Daimler, and a 1956 Tatra 500HB bus” according to Doubravová.
There are other interesting things, like the Škoda Sentinel steam car from the period of the First Republic. “It is a flatbed truck with low sides, equipped with a double double-acting steam engine. The vehicle is controlled by the driver plus the heater,”.
The Technical Museum in Brno also includes several sites outside Brno. You will see further expansion shortly. “We manage six sites outside Brno. One of those is the windmill in Kuželov, which underwent a general overhaul in 2019, and won 2 awards one for Best Repaired Cultural Monument of the South Moravian Region and 2020 Patria Nostra Award. The works will continue with reconstructing the historic barn as a facility for administrators and visitors,. We will also build a charging station for e-bikes and finally a general farm building with a new exhibition of mining housing, “outlined Ivo Štěpánek, Brno Technical Director.
They can also look forward to the news in the building of the former customs house in Hatě. “We will build a Museum of Customs and Border Protection in it. The building will get a completely new look, “said Štěpánek.