Shanghai History Museum is a museum dedicated to the history of the city of Shanghai, China. The museum’s collections focuses on the approximately a hundred years in the history of Shanghai from the opening of the port in 1843 to the communist take-over in 1949. located now just below the Oriental TV Tower at Pudong New Area, was formally opened to the public on July 1, 2000.
There are three major exhibition units reflecting Shanghai’s history, modern and recent revolutionary history. The collection of the Shanghai History Museum includes more than 30,000 items. Of them, about 18,000 items pertain to the modern history of the city, a portion of these items found its way into the museum from the governors of the Foreign Concessions. In a exhibition hall which covers an area of 4,000 square meters, the 1,000 artifacts and exhibits are elaborately arranged to revive the old Shanghai. Amidst the unique Shikumen, or stone-arched houses and various Chinese shops, visitors are able to savor the charm of the oriental metropolis, once the largest city in the Far East. The collection of the Museum amounts to around 110,000 pieces including 15 major categories, namely calligraphy and paintings, metal, ceramics, crafts, badges and plaques, literature, printings, textiles, stone carvings, coins, photos, paper cuttings, stamps, gramophone record and other miscellaneous items. All thing items have high and vital referential value to the study of the development of Shanghai city.
The most thrilling things for a lot of visitors may be the “Performing Zone”. Every day, performances are put on to tell the history of different periods from the late Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) to the 1940s. With the help of the actors’ songs and verbal and body languages, audiences can experience the old atmosphere of the city.
History of the Museum
Originally established in September 1983, Shanghai History Museum was formerly known as “Shanghai History & Cultural Relics Showroom” in the western suburb of the city as its temporary exhibition site. It first opened to the public on May 27, 1984. With a collection of over 1,300 pieces of cultural relics, documents and pictures, it showed the development of Shanghai city to the public. the new Shanghai History Museum was opened to public on No. 1286 Hongqiao Road and it got the present name in 1991. It staged more than 1500 pieces of cultural relics in six parts. In 1992, the Museum was moved to Hongqiao Road as the temporary site, and the exhibition hall was expanded to 1,400 square meters. The 40,000-plus exhibits collected by the Museum reflect the historic vicissitudes of the Shanghai city.
The main museum was closed due to land redevelopment in 1999, but “temporary” exhibitions of the museum’s holdings continue to be mounted elsewhere. Since May 2001, the museum has maintained an exhibition room at the base of the Oriental Pearl Tower in Lujiazui.