Šilutės Hugo Šojaus muziejus
- Šilutė Hugo Sheu Museum
Lietuvininkų g. 4
The history of the Šilutė Hugo Sheu Museum dates back to the 19th century, when the old Šilokarčema manor was purchased by Hugo Scheu, a landlord from Klaipėda, in 1889. One of the most prominent individuals in the Klaipėda region, Scheu was actively involved in the economic and cultural activities of East Prussia. Seeing how fast traditions and businesses were disappearing in the wake of the industrial revolution, he began collecting ethnographic and folkloric material of the Klaipėda region in two rooms of his manor house. Gradually, the manor museum built up a collection of ethnographic furniture, clothes, documents, prints and maps. In particular, it obtained many examples of old Lithuanian clothes and fabrics. This museum, the first of its kind in the region, was accessible to the intelligentsia and scientists.
During the Second World War, the collections suffered from neglect, a situation which was compounded by the presence of Red Army units billeting in the manor. As the first manager of the museum collection post-1945 noted, ‘the majority of the exhibits have been knocked onto the floor and mixed with garbage…’.
In August 1948, the manor was given to the School of Horticulture and Beekeeping, which had originally been located in Kretinga. The museum was subsequently moved to a house in the center of Šilutė, Lietuvininkų str. 36. In 1949, it was reopened under a new name: Šilutė Local Lore Museum. M. Jonaitis, a teacher appointed as the director of the museum. At the time, the museum had 718 exhibits.
Between 1956 and 1961, the director of the museum was archaeologist J. Kvilonaitė. She focused on the archaeological monuments and renovation. The activities of the following director, D. Lukoševičiūtė-Narbutienė, greatly influenced the development of the museum's collections in 1961–1987; several expeditions were organized during which valuable household goods, fishing tools, agricultural implements and a number of prints were added to the museum’s collection.
In 1965, by the order of the Ministry of Culture, the Šilutė museum became a branch of the Klaipėda regional museum. The reorganisation did not benefit the museum. In 1972, the Klaipėda museum was subordinated to the Klaipėda Executive Committee and, eight years later, the Šilutė museum's main exhibitions were closed.
When Lithuania declared its independence in 1990, the Šilutė county municipality re-established the museum. The Museum was renamed as the Šilutė museum. Changing the name of the institution also led to radical changes inside the museum; new exhibitions were prepared and the most valuable exhibits of Hugo Sheu's collection were once again put on display.
The museum went on to establish 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. On 30 May 2015, the museum officially took up residence once again in the Šilokarčema manor.
The manor complex now includes a museum, a restoration and education center, where restoration workshops are established, and textile, metal and paper restorers are working, as well as an education classroom. The manor also houses the museum's internal library-archive.
Currently, the museum and its branches hold 60,150 exhibits.
The museum and its branches hold 60,150 items.
Currently, the Šilutė Museum's collections can be divided into the following groups:
- Works of art
- Folk Art
- Ethnographic objects
- Documents, prints and maps
- Photographs and postcards
- Fishing implements
For more on these collections, see:
Monday to Thursday: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Friday: 8 a.m. to 3:45 p.m.
Daily lunch break: 12 p.m. to 12:45 p.m.