Museum of Yugoslav History

Muzej istorije Jugoslavije

The MIJ was founded in 1996 as a successor to the Memorial Centre “Josip Broz Tito” and the Museum of the Revolution of Yugoslav Nations and Ethnic Minorities. It has a collection of more than 200000 items that illustrate Yugoslav history throughout 20th century, with the special accent on life and work of Josip Broz Tito.

The Museum of Yugoslav History comprises 3 buildings (the Museum “May 25th”, the House of Flowers and the Old Museum) total surface of which is 5252.57 m2, and a 3.20 hectare park.

THE MAY 25 MUSEUM was purpose-built to the preliminary design of architect Mika Janković as a gift from the City of Belgrade to Tito, on the occasion of his seventieth birthday. It was officially opened on May 25, 1962. It has a total floor space of 3,480 m2 with 1,600 m2 of exhibition space on the first floor.

Gifts received by Josip Broz, both at home and abroad, were exhibited, curated, catalogued and studied in this museum until 1982. Its distinguishing feature was the permanent exhibitoin of batons. The museum was used for meetings of young people and artists and also presented exhibtions on topical themes from the collection. Visitors to the museum could watch documentaries on the life and work of Josip “Tito” Broz.

The May 25th Museum became the entry and exit facility of the Josip Broz Tito Memorial Centre (1982-1996), the major memorial complex established to preserve and nurture the memory of Josip Broz and to collect, catalogue and display documents and other items connected to his life and work.

Exhibitions of material from the Museum of Yugoslav History collection have been presented in this gallery space since 1992, along with exhibitions and other events organised by the MIJ in collaboration with both local and international partners.

From 1945 to 1987, May 25 was celebrated as the birthday of Josip “Tito” Broz. From 1957, on the initiative of Tito himself, the date was celebrated as Youth Day with a festival in the Yugoslav People’s Army stadium. May 25 became a youth review in which the physical and spiritual achievements of young Yugoslavs were presented at a rally which included the presentation of a baton to Tito as part of the event.

THE HOUSE OF FLOWERS was built in 1975, designed by architect Stjepan Kralj as a winter garden with a total of 902 m2 of work and leisure space for Josip Broz, close to his Residence.

It comprises a central flower garden between two parallel utility spaces. Opposite the entrance is an open terrace overlooking Belgrade. In accordance with his wishes, Tito’s body was interred in the central flower garden in 1980.

Conceived and designed by architect Branko Bon, THE OLD MUSEUM (870.57 m2) was built in 1964-5. It was originally used to store and display the many gifts presented to Josip Broz on his travels throughout the country and abroad and for his birthdays.

The ethnographic collection of the Museum of Yugoslav History contains more than 4,000 items. These include vivid national costumes (gifts from throughout the former Yugoslavia other countries including Mongolia, the USSR, India, Burma, Ethiopia, Mexico, Chile and Bolivia), richly decorated towels, hand-woven rugs and tapestries, folk instruments and hand-crafted weapons from many parts of the world. The ethnographic collection also boasts a variety of handcrafts such as old carved wood chests, pipes, chibouks, spinning wheels and a vibrant collection of dolls in national costumes.

Since 1987, part of this collection has made up the permanent collection of the OLD MUSEUM. Items of particular interest are an authentic Bolivian shaman’s costume such as is used to this day in magic rituals, a Tanto sword (this 14th Century item is one of the most valuable in the collection), an 1870 national costume from Prizren (the oldest textile item in the collection) and a stone gusle (a one-stringed folk fiddle) which has been crafted from a single piece of stone.

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Novi izgled hola Muzeja 25. maj

Museum of Yugoslav History

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