Zahorie museum Skalica, Slovakia

The Zahorie museum (Záhorské múzeum v Skalici) is a regional museum of the Senica district, with special focus on the Zahorie or Tramontane region. It was set up in 1905 on the initiative of Dr. P.Blaho within the framework of the so-called Catholic Circle or the Club House. The core of the fund consisted of private, predominantly ethnographic collections of the founder. In 1952 it came to be the Homeland Museum. After the territorial reorganization in 1960, it served as the Municipal Museum at Skalica until 1965, with an exhibition of nature, archaeology, ethnography, earlier and modern history. In 1965, its district competence was returned to it and it was given its present name.

The Haban Museum or the Haban House in the Great Leaves is an exposition of the Záhorský Museum in Skalica, which is available to the General Office of Velké Leváre. The exhibition, devoted to the culture and crafts of haban, is located in the Izerov house from 1717 in the monumental reservation of the folk architecture of Habánsky dvor, made up of 22 original multi-storey buildings from the 17th – 19th centuries. A set of Habian folk buildings is located in the southwestern part of the village of Veľké Leváre, towards Malá Leváre.

Habani, also called anabaptists, Baptists, or Newborns, were a Protestant religious sect. Their life was governed by the religious principles of the Bible. They did not recognize the rank, the secular or the church. They did not own any private property, so they introduced joint ownership. They kept their own speech and religious ceremonies. Their origin was from Switzerland, but later they had to leave. From Switzerland, through Germany, Austria and southern Moravia, they came to the west of Slovakia. They built a strictly enclosed separate estate, on the outskirts of the Great Levár, called Neuhof – New Court. Through their work and skills, they have influenced the life of the village and the surrounding area.

Owned knives, ceramics, owned a mill, brewery or public bath. Later, Velve Leváre became an important craft center, thanks to the production of jugs

In 1970, Izers restored the house where the Museum of Haban Crafts was established. In 1981, the Haban Court, together with the Haban Museum, was declared a monumental reservation of folk architecture. The museum operated until 1989. It is attributed to the exhibits of the Záhorský Museum in Skalice. The museum has also undergone renovations, but this did not make much difference in its appearance. The museum points to the history of the local Haban community, the specifics of their social, family and economic life, their traditional crafts and a sketch of the history of the village of Velké Leváre.

Exposition in the Haban House in the Great Leaves is located in a renovated original Haban house. It approximates the history of the local Haban community, the specifics of their social, family and economic life, their traditional crafts and a sketch of the history of Velké Leváre.

The original museum building designed by National Artist Architect D. Jurkovic, until 1989 housed both the exhibitions and the administrative sector. It is remarkable by its architectonic design and its artistic ornamentation. The facade is decorated with mosaic work according to sketches by the Czech painter M. Ales, in the so-called Theatre Hall the walls and the curtain carry paintings with folk motifs by A. Frolko and J. Uprka. The building is a cultural monument. The museum’s workplaces are now located in the neighbouring – co-called Mittak’s House.

The collections of the Zahorie Museum focus on archaeology, history, literary history, ethnography and musicology of the region.

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