A house full of knowledge,
emotions and traditions!
Museokatu 3, 65100 Vaasa | Tel. +358 6 325 3800
Open Tue–Sun 10–17, Mondays closed.
Admission fees 7/5 €, under 18s free of charge.
THE CULTURAL HISTORY COLLECTIONS
The museum’s collections include approximately 70,000 items. The largest collections are The Museum of Ostrobothnia Collection; The Karl Hedman Collection and The Nelin-Cronström Collection. Sourander’s Silver Collection and Mauritz Hallberg’s Coin Collection are special collections.
The Ostrobothnian Museum Collection
The museum’s cultural history artefact collections reflect the rich urban and rural folk culture of the Ostrobothnian coastal region in the 18th and 19th centuries. The early Ostrobothnian industrial era of the 19th and 20th centuries is also well represented. Antique furniture and art objects from Vaasa, Ostrobothnia and wider Europe are included in the Karl Hedman collections. The objects tell us something of Ostrobothnians’ lives and livelihood, as well as their world of ideas.
A considerable amount of the furniture, utensils and ornaments in the collection come from middle-class homes in the Ostrobothnian coastal towns. Objects and records connected to shipping and the guild system also reveal something about town culture in Ostrobothnia. The museum has extensive collections of items from the Berga, Grönvik and Sandnäs glassworks which were in operation in the 1800s. The region’s potteries and ceramics manufacturers are also well represented in the collections. Amongst traditional sources of income on the coast, seal hunting is particularly well documented through collected items.
The richly decorated cupboards, stools, clock-cases and chests testify to the skill and diligence both of carpenters and decorative painters. The rich tradition of painted flower motifs is especially well demonstrated by the cottage interior from Björkö island in the Vaasa archipelago. Many utensils, implements and craft tools are beautifully decorated. There are approximately 600 various types of distaffs in the museum collections. In particular the distaffs which were made as betrothal gifts are skillfully and beautifully crafted and decorated. The collections also include decorated wooden harnesses, mountings and sledges.
The large collection of traditional textiles is a unique entity. The years of oppression in the early 1900s and the 1918 civil war were of momentous historical significance, and the museum community of Vaasa was quick to realize that they should be documented. For this reason, the collections include many items that provide information about this period.
In recent decades, collection work has focused on the second half of the 1900s. Objects from industries in Vaasa, home interiors and cottage furniture have been obtained for the collections, as well as several items from Svensson’s café and pastry shop, such as furniture, utensils and tea sets.
The Karl Hedman Collection
Furniture and objects collected by medical doctor Karl Hedman and his wife Elin Hedman constitute a separate collection. The Hedmans began their active museum work already at the end of the 1800s. The furniture and collector’s items are on display in the art and period rooms of The Hedman Floor.
The Silver Collection includes silver from Vaasa and Ostrobothnia, but also from Central Europe. The international ceramics collection consists of over 1,300 items from China, as well as from all renowned European ceramics manufacturers.
The Nelin-Cronström collection
The Nelin-Cronström Art Museum was donated to the museum at the end of the 1990s. The collection includes several hundred artworks and thousands of art objects, such as art glassware, ornaments, furniture and textiles.
The museum also has other donated collections of significance. The silver collection donated by engineer Ingwald Sourander is particularly valuable, with over 200 pieces of silverware made by Finnish masters. The collection, which Sourander wished to donate to his home town, forms part of the exhibition in the museum’s Silver Room. The collection of 5,500 coins donated by Councillor of State Mauritz Hallberg includes almost every kind of coin in use in Finland during the Swedish era, the Russian era and the era of independence, up until the currency reform in the 1960s. The collection is on display in the Coin Cabinet.