The Uganda National Museum is located in Kampala, the capital of Uganda along Kira Road (off to Kamwokya). The museum displays and has exhibitions of ethnological, historical, and traditional life collections of Uganda’s heritage. The museum was established in 1908 and the collections at the start were collected and assembled by the British commissioners under Governor George Wilson. The first of the collections were journals from all over Uganda. The Uganda National Museum has collections of playable music instruments, weapons used in hunting, archeology, and entomology.

Brief History.

The museum is the biggest and oldest in Uganda. It started at Fort Lugard on old Kampala Hill, it was later moved to Makerere University at the Margret Trowel School of industrial fine art before being shifted to Kitintale in 1954 where it stands as of today. The museum is a work of Architecture by Ernest May a German architect. The design was to allow ample natural lighting and air to ensure better preservation of the collections here. In 2008, the museum turned 100 years old.

If you have interests in the pre-colonial history of Uganda and other aspects of Uganda’s history, you shouldn’t miss a visit to the Uganda National Museum. There are thousands of collectibles from all over Uganda to give insight into the country.

The galleries

Ethnographic Gallery

This section holds over 100,000 objects of cultural and historical value. A reed door leads to the exhibits on items of warfare, health, knowledge systems, traditional wear, and dressing and other cultural and ceremonial instruments that were used in the African Traditional society.

Musical Gallery 

This presents a display of a comprehensive collection of musical instruments from all parts of Uganda. These are well arranged and have recent additions like the BET Award and other accolades of the famous musician Eddy Kenzo. It includes instruments like drums, string equipment, flutes, and percussions, among others. The museum has an independent pavilion of science and history that shows transport and communications things of recent history like the first printing press, vehicles of past presidents, telephones among others.

Behind the museum building is a cultural village. The village has huts that depict the traditional lifestyles and housing of different tribes in Uganda. Visitors who would like to experience the indigenous ways of Uganda and an array of cultural materials.

The Uganda National Museum also collaborates with different institutions of learning like Makerere University, University of Michigan, Natural History Museum in Paris, among others to do paleontology research. This has yielded some fossils aged between 19 and 20 million years that relate to human evolution.

The museum can be visited daily except on public holidays. It contains a rich collection from Uganda that one must see to understand Uganda’s history. It can be added to a Kampala city tour.

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