Museum of Ankara
The Ethnography Museum of Ankara is located on on the site of a
Muslim cemetery on a hill in Namazgah, Ankara, Turkey. The hill was
granted to Ministry of National Education in order to be built as
museum according to Decree of Cabinet of Ministers dated November
15, 1925 by General Directorate of Charity Foundations.
The revolutionists taken part in Turkish War of Independence until
1924 giving importance to national culture believed in establishment
of an Ethnography Museum including material and spiritual cult
inheritance. For this reason Hamdullah Suphi Tanrıöven, Minister of
National Education, asked opinion of his work friend Turkologist J.
Meszarow, one of the chiefs of Budapest Ethnography Museum for
establishment of the museum, and he was offered to serve for this
purpose, which is understood from the report submitted to Ministry
of National Education by Prof. Meszarow on November 29, 1924. Thus
in order to make preparation for establishment of Public Museum a
special committee firstly chaired by Prof. Celal Esad (Arseven) in
Istanbul in 1924 and chaired by Halil Ethem (Erdem). Director of
Istanbul Museums in 1925 was established for collection and purchase
of arts. 1250 arts purchased by the committee were exhibited in the
museum completed in 1927. Hamit Zübeyr Koşay was appointed as
Director of the Museum.
Gazi Mustafa Kemal (Atatürk) visiting the museum on April 15, 1928
after being informed about the museum ordered the opening of the
museum for the reason of visit of Afghan king Amanullah Han to
Turkey. The museum was opened to public on 18 July 1930 and was
remained open until inner courtyard of the Museum was allocated as
temporary tomb in November 1938. The body of Atatürk was kept there
until it was carried to Anıtkabir in 1953. This section is still
kept as a tomb in the memorial of Atatürk, there is following
inscription on the white marble:
This is the place where Atatürk who passed to eternity on 10.11.1938
lay down from 21.11.1938 until 10.11.1953.
The Ethnography Museum served as a mausoleum of Atatürk for 15
years, until the completion of Anıtkabir. It has been visited by
Presidents, ambassadors, foreign delegates and public. Works were
continued during this period in the museum. Required changes were
made for International Museum Week of 6-14.11.1956 and the museum
was opened for public visits again.
The architect of the building is Arif Hikmet (Koyunluoğlu), who is
considered as one of the most valuable architects of first period
The building has rectangular design and is one domed. Stone walls
are covered with kufeki stones. Forehead section is covered with
marble and decorated with carvings. 28 steps are used for entrance
into the building. There is a 4 column, three way entrance system.
When entered through the door. One reaches the room under dome and
to columned section called inner courtyard. There is a marble pool
in the middle of the courtyard, and roof is left open. When this
inner courtyard is allocated as temporary mausoleum for Atatürk, the
pool was transferred to the garden and the roof was closed. There
are small-big size halls around the inner courtyard in symmetry.
Administration section is adjacent to the museum and is two storey.
The Bronze Atatürk sculpture on horse in front of the Museum was
made by Italian Artist P. Conanica upon direction of Ministry of
The Ethnography Museum
The Ethnography Museum is the museum where Turkish art from Seljuki
to present time is exhibited.
Public clothes, jewellery, shoes, slippers samples collected from
various regions of Anatolia, woman and man socks from Sivas region,
various bowls, laces, scarves. Belts, handkerchiefs, bed sheets,
bride costumes, bridegroom shaving sets, old traditional Turkish art
Technical material and designs unique to Turks and carpets, weaving
benches from Uşak, Gördes, Bergama, Kula, Milas, Ladik, Karaman,
Niğde, Kırşehir regions are exhibited. Among fine art samples of
Anatolian Mine arts there are Memluk boilers from 15th century,
Ottoman sweet boilers, hand washing jugs, trays, coffee trays, meal
tables, cups, candle scissors etc. are exhibited.
Arrows, bows, lighting pistols, rifles, sword and other things from
Ottoman Period, Turkish pottery and porcelain and Kütahya
porcelains, religious and sect properties, Turkish inscriptions are
exhibited with the nice samples.
Seljuki Sultan Keyhüsrev III's throne a finest sample of Turkish
wooden works (XIIIth century), Ahi Şerafettin Sandukası (XIVth
century), Nevşehir Ürgüp Damsa Village Taşhur Pasha Mosque nish (XIIth
century), Siirt Ulu Mosque Nish (XIIth century), Merzifon Çelebi
Sultan Medrese Gate (XVth century) are some of the important arts of
The collection granted as gift by Besim Atalay, member of VIIth
Period TBMM (Grand National Parliament) contains Turkish art
histories dating from various periods.
There is a specialised library containing art works about Anatolian
ethnography and folklore, art history.