Pune’s 131-year-old museum dedicated to taxidermy
The museum, which was renamed as the Lord Raey Industrial Museum in 1885, has some of the rarest artefacts from the country’s incredible history.Updated: Jun 29, 2017 16:17 IST
Hindustan Times, Pune
The Mahatma Phule Vastu Sangrahalay is one of the most serene and calm locations on the busy Ghole Road. It was founded in 1875 as the Poona Industrial Museum after an industrial exhibition organised by the Poona Exhibition Committee. The museum, which was renamed as the Lord Raey Industrial Museum in 1885, has some of the rarest artefacts from the country’s incredible history. Rajeev Bedekar, administrator of the museum, shares, “The stuffed animals, birds and fishes are the highlight of the museum. Their - almost real - appearance makes it a memorable visit for many.”
The 3,000 sq ft area is equipped with a library, museum, study centre and several social activities are conducted throughout the month. “People are aware of the library, but the museum is still a hidden gem. People should come down to view the handicrafts, textile objects, oil paintings, armours and stone carvings. The museum holds a rich compilation of brassware, stone carvings, and marble statues too,” added Bedekar.
The museum collection is divided in halls which cater to several sections, such as industries and engineering; geology and minerals; handicrafts and cottage industries; agriculture, forestry, natural history and armoury. “The botanical garden surrounding the museum building proposes to raise over 600 plants. The library contains books on various sections and are classified according to Dewey’s decimal classification system.
The premise also conducts many social events and encourages students to participate in courses conducted by them. “We have a study centre for students appearing for competitive exams. We also hold cultural programmes that help create awareness among the citizens,” said Bedekar.
One thing that one cannot miss here is the taxidermy (preserving of animal bodies), the cheetah, Indian lion, birds and fishes,which are a great view in glass shelves.
Mahatma Phule Vastu Sanghralay
What: 131-year-old museum with a large collection of preserved body parts of animals, artefacts, textile items, handicraft, and armoury.
Where: 1203, Ghole Road, Shivajinagar
Timings: 8 am – 5 pm
First Published: Jun 29, 2017 15:20 IST