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HISTORICAL MUSEUM OF POSTAL AND TELECOMMUNICATIONS
( MUSEO STORICO DELLE POSTE E TELECOMUNICAZIONI )
This Museum was established in the basement of the Ministry of Post and Telecommunications which is located in the EUR district.
This Historical Museum is a rich itinerary through the history of communication from its beginning, from rudimentary experiments to state of the art technologies.
The museum, that is divided into 22 sections with approximately 4,000 sq.metres of exhibition area was inaugurated in the present location in 1982 but its original nucleus arises from the collection begun in 1878 by the general manager of the telegraphs, Ernesto D’Amico.
He put together equipment and materials coming from the “telegraphic offices” of the ancient Italian states, the equipment and materials had fallen into disuse after the unification.
The itinerary of the exhibition evocatively opened by the reestablishment of a Nineteenth century post office, reconstructs the history of mail service prior to the modern reorganisation of the sector which occurred after the proclamation of the Republic.
The exhibition begins with ancient times (with its articulated system of mail stations, which are described by the famous Tabula Peutingeriana) to the modern age with relics, photographs and watercolours that witness the evolution of public transportation by land, sea and air.
It reverts to the period of the Kingdom of Italy through an extraordinary and precious collection of mail boxes, the most ancient come from Borgo cerreto (PG) and date back to 1633.
There are also plenty of odd items such as the weapons used to defend the mail carriages from the onslaught of the numerous robbers who acted in the territory of the Kingdom or the stick with bells used by the military messengers as acknowledgement in areas of war operations.
The sector dedicated to the mechanisation describes the history of the telegraph.
A Morse work station and the radio cabin of the Elettra, Guglielmo Marconi’s boat and floating laboratory for his experiments, are reproduced in the Museum.
Some of the highly fascinating objects housed in the Museum include an ingenious and complicated mechanism for the transmission of images, the photo-telegraph, fax ante litteram which dates back to 1825 and the little oven for the disinfection of letters in use between the Eighteenth and Twentieth centuries during the epidemics and especially plagues.
Besides the rich sections dedicated to philately that exhibit stamps, postmarks and seals from the pre-unification States to the Republic, the museum also offers an area dedicated to the history of radiocommunications and relics that recall the beginning of television: as·an example, the cathode ray tube produced in 1940 by Safar in Milan.
Information and Addresses
Address Viale Europa, 190
Visiting Hours Every day from 9.00 am to 1.00 pm
Closed Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 1, Dec. 25, Jan. 1, May 1
Telephone 06 54442092; Fax 0654221673
Price Free admission
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