State Museum (Williamson Sangma Museum)
Museums are repositories of cultural, historical, technical, industrial or other kinds of materials for preservation against decay and for transmission to posterity as records for history. They serve as important audio-visual means of education. The Meghalaya State Museum, established in 1975, is considered as one of the center for studies into our history and culture as well as for preserving our rich cultural heritage that is now undergoing tremendous pressure in the face of contacts with various cultures both from the East and the West. The main activities of the State Museum are in the field of acquisition, exhibition, conservation, publication and education.
More Galleries have been set up in the State Museum ( now known as Williamson Sangma Museum).Artifacts like traditional tools used by our people, traditional musical instruments, arts and crafts have been acquired in order to enrich the Museum collections. The Museum collections have also been enriched by the acquisition of replicas of Ashoka Pillars and others from the National Museum, New Delhi, Dinosaurs model from the Geological Survey of India, Kolkatta and Anthropological life size model from Gauhati.
Progress and Development:
- Meghalaya State Museum, Shillong was established in the year 1975, under the auspicices of the Department of Education and housed in the Legislative Assemly building. A small gallery was established wherein few collections were dispalyed
- State Museum continues to collect the valuable exhibits,rare articles and antiques. A number of Diarrama has been put up depicting the socio-cultural lives of the people of the Sate
- State Museum has also opened its District Museum at Tura in West Garo Hills on the 18th August , 1989. District Museum , Tura is temporarily housed at the ground floor of the office of the Meghalaya Board of School Education, Tura. Museum authorities are taking necessary steps to improve and expand the activities in the near future
- State Museum , Shillong and District Museum, Tura are ethnographical Museum, also known as multipurpose Museum. Ethnographical collections include various kinds of objects of a race or clan which include handricrafs, arts,industries,objects of rituals, domestic articles,weapons of war and chase,jewelleries, musical implements,costumes and so on.
The main purposes of an ethnographic Museum are
- to serve as a research institution for intellectual where records of civilisation are stored
- to afford opportunities to the University and College students to observe the Khasi,Jaintia and Garo people
- to endow the common people with better ideas and knowledge about the culture and the life style of the Khasis, Jaintias and Garos
The activities of the State Museum are increasing dealing with the preservation,restoration and exhibitional aspects of the rich cultural heritage of the people of the State. Museum authorities are giving due attention and encouragement for the purpose of collection, preservation and restoration of various cultural properties of the people of the state