A museum is always a tribute to the past. The reminiscence of past reflects the social and cultural frame works of that time. Preservation of such reminiscence is a true honor given to the past. The museums with exceptional reminiscent collection is a way to unravel the past and valuable treasure for the future generations that throw light to a rich civilization and traditions observed by ancient people. Such museums shares the true history and in many parts of the country there are several museums having rare and exquisite collection of past. Collections cannot be defined as it contains anything from simple piece of work to any thing that has historical significance.
Assam state museum is one that out do all other museums in the country with numerous collections that is categorized in different sections. It was established as a result of constant effort of kamarupa Anusandhan Samiti or Assam Research Society in the year 1940 as late Kanklal Baruwa as the founder and president of the museum. In the year 1953 it was taken over the by the Government of Assam. The Government had taken several intensive effort to project before the world the real lifestyle and traditions of Assamese people through this museum. It is constructed according to imposing colonial architecture.
Currently it is one of the favorite destinations of history buffs and archeologists other than curious visitors. It has vast prehistoric antiques, photo galleries and traditional artifacts. This museum reflects the true representation of exact North eastern region traditions. The varied yet unique life style articles of different Assamese tribes are exhibited here. Right from ancient coins to intricate sculptures of Assamese culture delights any visitor without fail. The reconstructed miniatures of Assamese villages are an exceptional attraction to the visitors that gives the feeling of a real journey to those villages. The museum is one of the largest multipurpose museums in India with different sections displayed thematically. The sections include archeology, iconography, epigraphy and numismatics.
Huge library with different sections is another attraction in the museum. The library in the museum was established in the year 1985 with vast stenographic collections. It has collections of ancient art and literature of Assam depicting the rich heritage of Assamese literature. It includes journals, periodicals, biographies, encyclopedia and Asiatic society Journals. Precious books and manuscripts on the art and literature collection beats any literary collection other libraries. The library collection gives the best references for researchers and students for academic purposes regarding Assamese culture and art. The mythology collection reveals its strong influence in the traditional rituals observed by the Assamese tribes from ancient time till today without loosing its ethnicity. Many traditions followed in Assam are strongly rooted in the legends, folklores and myths. The Museum library is an authentic centre that gives exact undeniable information with historical periods and facts.
For art forms another section that includes epigraphy and sculptures are also functions here. The sculpture section is again divided in to four main categories of stone, wood, metal and terracotta. Weapons made with stone and metals of medieval period gives amazing experience to the visitors that mentally make them travel to those eras. Handicrafts made with woods are real masterpieces of Assamese craftsmanship. Terra cotta jewellery, pottery and crafts show the Assamese culture and lifestyle that is so close to nature. There are different sections for natural history and anthropology that reveals the human racial factors of Assamese people. Folk art form sections exhibits the rich and diverse Assamese art forms of music and dance. These art forms also affirm the rich traditional festivals, based on which these art forms were originated.
The arms section gives the clear picture of weapons that were used for protection from enemies and wild animals. The Rulers were quite attentive in the making of weapons with the prime aim of protection of the country and people.
The museum situates in G.N.B road, in the southern end of Dighali Pukhuri tank in the heart of the Guwahati city. Rail, road and air transport can be accessed to reach here. The visiting hours are 10.00 am to 5.00pm on summers and 10.00 am to 4.30 pm on winters, except Mondays, 2nd, 4th Saturdays and Government holidays.