The Historical Museum
For 100 years, the Historical Museum has been located at Krafts torg (Kraft Square). However, situated behind the cathedral’s apse, the building was considered not particularly accessible. That is until the start of the new century. The museum is now newly renovated and ready to relate some eleven million stories.
On entering through the new entrance, you meet Musse (Mickey Mouse) from Uppåkra, view the 10,000-year-old urox, have the possibility of assembling a digital cod and be amazed by the crucifix from Rebbelberga church dating from the 12th century.
The Historical Museum is considerably older than 100 years. After being moved around it was finally located at Krafts torg in 1918, where it has remained. Built in the 1840’s, the building was intended as the home for the bishop. However, no bishop ever lived here.
When entering through the new glass cube into the bright admission area with reception and museum shop, it is immediately obvious that this is a modern museum. The stone age axes on the wall give a glimpse as to what lies ahead.
Waiting at Kulturportal Lund are museum curator Per Karsten and deputy curator Sofia Cinthio. The first question to be asked must be, “What is new here?”
“Well, you’ve seen the glass cube. This provides us with a conducive atmosphere for our exhibits. The moisture in the air that otherwise would cause the iron amongst the Uppåkra finds to rust, has been removed. At last, we have solved the climate problem here as well as providing our visitors with an impressive entrance”, explained Per Karsten.
Sofia Cinthio went on to talk about the modern lighting used to create scenarios, new monitoring systems, better space allocation for the public and extended opening hours.
New signs point to an historic workshop where young visitors can create and get a feel of the history of Skåne.
Eleven million stories
At Lund University’s Historical Museum, all exhibits come from the county of Skåne. Finds from the rest of the country are collected in Stockholm.
Skåne is so rich in finds that the museum has some eleven million. However, not everything is on display. Some items are stored and available for research purposes at Gastelyckan.
“Each object tells a story. So, we’re able tell eleven million stories”, added Per Karsten.
Madonnas from demolished churches
Climbing the stairs, we come to the items relating to medieval church art.
With all the wooden artworks collected from the medieval Scanian churches, it is rather like stepping into a chapel. Madonnas, crucifixes and altar cabinets left in storage when churches were demolished are now carefully preserved.
From the incense burner and the processional crosses in the liturgical room, we come to the finds from Uppåkra. Over time the collection will be extended as more objects are discovered. The item that looks like Mickey Mouse has become a symbol of the excavations at Uppåkra. It so small and well preserved that for this item alone, a visit is well worth while.
The Zoological Museum and the Museum of Antiquities have re-emerged
The Zoological Museum and the Museum of Antiquities no longer exist but have re-emerged at the Historical Museum. The entire collection of antique statues is now displayed in a room of its own.
Many of the Zoological Museum collections remain in storage at Gastelyckan. However, most items valued by zoologist Sven Nilsson (1787-1883) can be found at the historical museum.
Here, illuminated in different colours, you find the urox from Önnarp, with its wound marks, after an encounter with a Stone Age hunter some 10,500 years ago. Digital technology has moved inside the skeleton. Rather like a computer game and attracting both children and adults alike, the visitor is able to assemble a cod, a rook and a hare. Included among the more curious objects on display at the museum is Kilian Stobaeus’ curiosity cabinet. This consists of a collection of items that Professor Stobaeus donated to Lund University in 1735. Included amongst the items is the world’s oldest condom.
“The oldest known condom, that is”, Per Karsten points out.
The horse people of Sösdala
Space is also available here for any temporary exhibitions, as in 2019, with the exhibition Hästfolk (Horse People). The finds from Vätteryd outside Sösdala include bridles and fittings in silver and bronze dating from the 5th century.
Text: Ingrid Nathell, photo: IA