Uganda Museum was composed in 1908 by the British protectorate government at Lugard fort street on Kampala hill in Kampala city. It was later shifted in 1941 to Makerere university school of industrial and fine art and in 1954 it was permanently located on Kintate hill along Kira road till today. Between 1920 and 1940 they carried out research on archaeology and paleontological which was conducted with Church Hill, Bishop J Wilson, P.L. Shinie and many others who participated in the research. They collected thousands of specimen which has made this museum to boost on Uganda’s tourism hub. By the year 2008 Uganda museum made 100 years in existence.
Uganda museum is comprised of different sections of traditional history such as a music gallery, Ethnography section, Ethnohistory section, Science and industry section, Archaeology and the Palaeontology section. All these have been existing for over two million years through carrying out research across the country at the foothills of Eastern region namely; Karamojong, Napak, Moroto, Kadam and Mount Elgon. At the edge of western rift valley near the borders of Uganda and Sudan, most of the research was carried out in Napak now it’s over 20 million years of these specimens’ discovery.
Ethnography section: This section talks about Uganda traditional culture, people’s way of life & the tools they used such as traditional reed doors, bark cloth, wooden tools, traditional outfits like the gomesi and kanzu, wooden sandals and many more.
Ethno history section: This section talks about the first printing press which was the first newspaper to be read in Uganda.
Archaeology section: This section identifies about the people of long ago and how they used stone age and iron for hunting which existed for over 1,000,000 years ago.
Science and industrial section: This section consists of the first telephone to appear in East Africa as the way of communication and the 7th fold car that was first driven in Uganda. It acted as means of transport. It also demonstrated the first chair Museveni sat on when he had just come on power.
Palaeontology: This section discovers specimens of mammals species that have been existing for years and years such as long horned buffalos, Indian elephant, snakes & birds which were collected in foothills of Eastern Uganda. All these were discovered in late years over 20 million years ago.
Musical gallery: This one comprises of major groups in musical instruments like drums, string instruments, percussion and all these were the instruments they used in the ancient years.
Cultural villages in form of houses: Uganda has got very many regions with different tribes and each comprises of its own way of traditional architecture. Outside in the premises of the museum, you can explore the way of lives categorized into cultural houses such as Banyoro house, Batoro house, Ankole house, Kigezi and all these houses are from western regions of Uganda. Inside this houses tourists can be able to view traditional materials they used like the bark cloth blankets which they used to cover themselves, royal drums they used them for communication and wooden beds for sleeping. From the Eastern part of Uganda, we have Teso house, Bagisu, Jopadhola house, karamojong house and the tools they used like traditional knives, headgear and the Teso calabashes used for drinking malwa. Ethnic groups from the northern part of Uganda such as Alur, Acholi, Lango, Mad tools they used and spears which acted were used for hunting in their traditional way of life. Baganda house which represents the central part of Uganda with tools they used like bark cloth acted as bed sheets, traditional outfits, wooden sandals, wooden beds, basket for luwombo, hunting nets and Mweso game which was played at their leisure time. Visitors are charged a very small fee to be able to experience this safaris and this tour can be added to your Uganda Budget Safaris. Uganda museum gives you a great view of these cultural materials like horn work, music instruments, cutlery, leather work, milk pots made from woods and also the craft materials such as bags, necklaces, ear rings, decorating materials which you can buy and take them for remembering.
Uganda museum is available for researchers, student’s tours, visitors tour on request with wide ranges of traditional specimens which has been in existence since 1960 up today. These specimen are displayed in nature history and the gallery is also open to the public. Uganda museum partnership with Makerere university, Mbarara school of sciences, college de France, Natural history museum in Paris and University of Michigan and working together with these alibis has helped a lot to its existence.
Uganda museum has offered a lot to schools, workshops and also other complementary services, school tours that can be conducted around the museum for further more on traditional ways of life and know about the historical background of the country.