Šilutės Hugo Šojaus muziejus

  • Šilutė Hugo Sheu Museum


The history of the Hugo Scheu museum in Šilutė begins in the end of XIX century, when from Klaipėda originated landowner Hugo Scheu bought the old Šilo karčema manor in 1889. He was one of the best-known person, revealed itself in the East Prussian economic and crafts. Seeing how quickly of the XIX century industrial revolution deletes traditions and cultural heritage, Hugo Sheu in two rooms of his manor house started to collect the Klaipėda region ethnographic material and folklore. At the manor museum there were collected ethnographic furniture, clothes and documents, prints and maps collections. Particularly many old Lithuanian clothes and textile samples were collected. This was the first museum in the Klaipėda region. The museum was accessible to the intelligentsia and scientists.

The collections collected by the son and father Sheu weren't saved by the grandson Verneris during World War II. The manor and the museum suffered a lot of damages from the Red Army units that were settled in the manor. The evidence of that was submitted in the notes of Memelander Martynas Toleikis who was appointed to manage the manor estate on 19 February 1945: „Most of the exhibits have been dropped on the floor and mixed with trash…“. The same summer M. Toleikis was appointed as a chief of the Šilutės ethnographic museum and the museum became property of the Lithuanian Academy of Sciences.

In 1948 the manor buildings was given to the Gardening and beekeeping school (before this school was former in Kretinga). The manor museum's collection moved into a house of the Šilutė city center in Lietuvininkų street No. 36. In 1949 the museum got a new name – Šilutės ethnographic museum. Teacher M. Jonaitis was appointed as the museum's director. At that time, the museum has 718 exhibits. In 1956–1961 the director of the museum was archaeologist J. Kvilonaitė. She focused on the archaeological monuments and renovation. D. Lukoševičiūtė-Narbutienė made a great influence to the collecting of the museum's collection in 1961–1987. At that time there were several expeditions organized. During these expeditions a lot of valuable households, fishing tools, agricultural implements and collection of prints were collected and enriched the musuem's collection. In 1965 by the order of the Ministry of culture the Šilutė ethnographic museum became the branch of the Klaipėda regional museum. The reorganization did not benefit for the museum. The museum's situation became worse when in 1972 the Klaipėda ethnography museum moved in to subordination of Klaipėda Executive Committee. 8 years later the main Šilutė museum's exposition was closed.

When in 1990 Lithuania declared its independence, Šilutė county municipality re-established the museum. The Museum was named as the Šilutė museum. The cardinal changes took place inside the museum: a new exposition was prepared, the most valuable collections of the Hugo Sheu exhibit were showed to the public. The museum establish few branches in Bitėnai, Švėkšna, Žemaičių Naumiestis and Macikai village.

On 9 April 2015, the Šilutė museum changed its name into the Šilutė Hugo Sheu museum. One of the most memorable day in the history of modern museum is May 30, 2015. On that day during Šilutė town's festival the museum was official opened. Even the Hugo Sheu has said once that the museum without the manor house is unthinkable. Finally his vision was fulfilled.

Nowadays in the building complex of the manor there are: museum, restoration and education center. Here textile, wood and paper restorers have been working. There have been opened education class as well.

The manor house also has renovated frescoes hall, the public hall with the exposition. In the first floor of the palace are two exhibitions halls. At this time on display is Hugo Sheu ethnographic collection as well as new expositions. Few exhibition will be opened in the future.

Archival and Other Holdings

60150 exhibits are in the collections of the museum and museum's branches.

Opening Times

Opening times:

Tuesday–Friday 9.00–18.00

Saturday 10.00–16.45

Sunday and Monday Closed.

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