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Birštonas Museum

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Vytauto g. 9, Birštonas
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Not many people know that Birštonas mineral water resort was a private town until the restoration of independence. What’s even more interesting is that written records of the resort date back to the 14th century when a fortified wooden castle was mentioned in the New Prussian Chronicle by Vygandas Marburgietis (Wigand of Marburg). In 1382, the Grand Master of the Order of the Teutonic Knights was informed that a homestead was founded by the salty water (near the Nemunas river). It happened almost 500 years before the location was granted official status as a resort!

The small town began to be known as an oasis of rest during the 19th century, especially after the nearby resort of Stakliškės burned down. In 1854, an official permit for the establishment of a resort was received, and was the responsibility of the landlord Adomas Bartoševičius and the physician Benediktas Bilinskis. After a couple of decades, Ignotas Kvinta, a landlord from Jieznas, became the owner of the resort and started expanding it. The next owner was Lidija Miller-Kochanovskienė. After the re-establishment of independence, the town, significantly damaged during the First World War, became the property and responsibility of the state and the Lithuanian Red Cross Society started taking care of it.

People looking not only for mineral water springs but also exceptional examples of wooden interwar architecture as well as those wanting a more detailed look at the history of the city should thank the forester Antanas Katelė.

The forester who worked at the resort decided to add to his salary by renting rooms to holidaymakers. With this in mind, a wooden villa was built in 1932-1933. It was beautiful and would have looked amazing in any resort of that time. Before the Soviet occupation, this was where teachers would stay who would come to Birštonas to get their strength back. The private villa later became the state-owned Ramunė Holiday Home.

Since 1967, Birštonas Museum has operated in the wooden building, famous for its asymmetrical composition and two towers. You can enter it through the expressive entrance, which is covered with a trapezium-shaped balcony supported by columns that have carvings reminiscent of a cut pattern.

The museum was begun by Petras Kazlauskas, a geography teacher, who was the head of a small ethnography group. Kazlauskas, together with his students, gathered together a collection of documents, press clippings, photographs, and other parts of the mosaic of the history of the resort. In 1966, it was exhibited in Tulpės sanatorium, and later the museum was provided with facilities. Whilst enjoying the exposition you’ll become acquainted with the history of both ancient and modern Birštonas.

Birštonas Museum

Vytauto g. 9, Birštonas

Not many people know that Birštonas mineral water resort was a private town until the restoration of independence. What’s even more interesting is that written records of the resort date back to the 14th century when a fortified wooden castle was mentioned in the New Prussian Chronicle by Vygandas Marburgietis (Wigand of Marburg). In 1382, the Grand Master of the Order of the Teutonic Knights was informed that a homestead was founded by the salty water (near the Nemunas river). It happened almost 500 years before the location was granted official status as a resort!

The small town began to be known as an oasis of rest during the 19th century, especially after the nearby resort of Stakliškės burned down. In 1854, an official permit for the establishment of a resort was received, and was the responsibility of the landlord Adomas Bartoševičius and the physician Benediktas Bilinskis. After a couple of decades, Ignotas Kvinta, a landlord from Jieznas, became the owner of the resort and started expanding it. The next owner was Lidija Miller-Kochanovskienė. After the re-establishment of independence, the town, significantly damaged during the First World War, became the property and responsibility of the state and the Lithuanian Red Cross Society started taking care of it.

People looking not only for mineral water springs but also exceptional examples of wooden interwar architecture as well as those wanting a more detailed look at the history of the city should thank the forester Antanas Katelė.

The forester who worked at the resort decided to add to his salary by renting rooms to holidaymakers. With this in mind, a wooden villa was built in 1932-1933. It was beautiful and would have looked amazing in any resort of that time. Before the Soviet occupation, this was where teachers would stay who would come to Birštonas to get their strength back. The private villa later became the state-owned Ramunė Holiday Home.

Since 1967, Birštonas Museum has operated in the wooden building, famous for its asymmetrical composition and two towers. You can enter it through the expressive entrance, which is covered with a trapezium-shaped balcony supported by columns that have carvings reminiscent of a cut pattern.

The museum was begun by Petras Kazlauskas, a geography teacher, who was the head of a small ethnography group. Kazlauskas, together with his students, gathered together a collection of documents, press clippings, photographs, and other parts of the mosaic of the history of the resort. In 1966, it was exhibited in Tulpės sanatorium, and later the museum was provided with facilities. Whilst enjoying the exposition you’ll become acquainted with the history of both ancient and modern Birštonas.

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