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Disbanding the Maritime Museum. Return to the Model-camera (1827-1834)


Items collected in the museum were sent to various institutions. The bulk of the museum collections (more than six-thousand articles) including exhibits from the Natural History Dept came to the Academy of Science, and were added to the collections of the Chamber of Curiosities. Many articles were sent to the Naval Cadet School. They made the basis for the museum of the oldest naval school. The library, drawings and charts were retained by the Hydrographical Depot. Later the library of the Maritime Museum made the basis for the Central Navy Library, the biggest book collection of the Russian Navy. Some exhibits, models of machines mostly, came to the Museum at the Free Economic Society. (What is this?) Memorabilia of Peter the Great - founder of the Russian Navy - stayed in the Admiralty, but were stored in another place: the Hall of the Admiralty Council. Many museum articles found their place in depots of naval crews and later were obtained by private owners. Some exhibits were sold out very cheaply. The disbanding of the collection continued until 1834. Eventually only the Model Chamber survived, with its 578 models of ships, ship guns and machines, a small share of once extensive collections.

The disbanding of the Maritime Museum obviously conflicted with the demands of the rapidly developing Navy and caused great damage to the museum, as it was thrust a century back to the initial shape of the Model Chamber. The only consolation was that the major part of the collection was not lost as might have happened had it been incorporated into other museums.