Location: Jalan Raja, Opposite Dataran Merdeka
Established In: 1996
Highlights: Numerous intriguing artifacts
How To Reach: One can easily reach History Museum by hiring
taxis, or by boarding trains, buses from the city.
The National Museum of History, called Muzium Sejarah Nasional in
Malay, is the second national museum of Malaysia, the first being Muzium
Negara. Located along Jalan Raja opposite Dataran Merdeka in Kuala
Lumpur, the museum addresses numerous artifacts that reveal the human
history of Malaysia. A walk through the exhibition galleries will boost
your knowledge about the country and its culture.
Initially the building was built with wood and bricks to house a
commercial bank in 1888. A.C Norman, a British architect who used to
work in the Public Works Department, designed this amazing building
using a blend of typical Moorish and Islamic architecture. The
building's architecture was also harmonized with the adjoining
buildings, which were once used for the country's administrative
It was also utilized by the Japanese Telecommunication Department
during the Japanese occupation. As soon as the war was over, the
function of the building as the main commercial bank was restarted and
lasted till 1965. Later the building was taken by the Kuala Lumpur
District and Land Office, now called Federal Territory Department of
Land and Mines. Further, the building was occupied by the Federal
Territory Religious Affairs Office, which is now called the Federal
Territory Islamic Religious Affairs Department (JAWI).
Of late, in 1991, the building was chosen to become a museum because of
its strategic location and surroundings. It was formally given up to the
Department of Museum and Antiques to get turned into the
History Museum. Since the original structure got dilapidated and the
building was rebuilt to house the museum. In 1996, the refurbished
building was opened as the National History Museum.
Today, it addresses a permanent collection of artifacts and dioramas
that depict the country's wealth of historical heritage. The several
exhibits presented here include 520 million-year-old metamorphic
sandstone, a 40,000-year-old Homo sapiens skull, and an eight-sided gold
coin dating back to the 15th century. To sum up, the National History
Museum is a must-visit place for any traveler in Kuala Lumpur.