Jakarta History Museum is known as Fatahillah Museum. Jakarta History Museum provides information on Jakarta’s history, starting from the prehistoric age to current age, in a creative way, through the collections of the museum.
History of The Jakarta History Museum
History of The Jakarta History Museum
In 1937, Oud Batavia Foundation proposed a plan to establish a museum about Batavia’s history. The foundation then bought a warehouse of a company, Geo Wehry & Co, that was located at Jl. Pintu Besar Utara no. 27 (now it’s the building used as Wayang Museum). The warehouse was then renovated as Oud Batavia Museum. In 1939 the museum was open for public. After the independence of Indonesia the name of the museum was changed to Old Djakarta Museum, under the responsibility of Indonesian Culture Institution. In 1968 the Old Jakarta Museum was handed over to DKI Jakarta’s government. On 30th March, 1974 the museum name officially changed to Jakarta History Museum by the government in-charged, Ali Sadikin.
The Building History
In VOC era the building where Jakarta History Museum currently stands was occupied as the municipal hall or Staadhuis. Municipal Hall of Batavia was built in 1620 by the General Governer, Jan Pieterszoon, who built Batavia. On 25th Januari 1707 the old municipal hall was demolished to build a new municipal hall as what it is now, under the governance of General Governer Abraham Van Riebeeck on 10th July 1710. The municipal hall was also ever occupied as Raad Van Justitie or justice council which handled civil and criminal cases in Batavia. Defendant of any case must be cooped up in the underground prison with cuffed hands. To those defendants that were proved guilty or regarded as a rebel to the Dutch Government might be hung in the front of Staadhuis. As the other municipal hall in Europe, the municipal hall of Batavia was supplemented with a square, named as Stadhuisplein. In 1973, the government of DKI Jakarta changed the square name became Fatahillah Square, to memorize General Fatahillah, the founder of Jakarta city.
Jakarta History Museum has up to 23,500 collections which some inherited from Oud Batavia Museum or Old Jakarta Museum, received from the government of DKI Jakarta, individual or institution grants. Material of the collection were varied, some are of medal, wood, crystal, ceramic, earthenware, porcelain, leather, paper, cloth, and bones. Some collections of Jakarta History Museum are partitions, execution sword, archives cabinet, paintings, and stuffs from prehistoric society, ancient inscription, and weapons. Some of the collections had been more than 1500 years old, especially those stuffs from the prehistoric age. Some of the stuffs are stone axe, rectangular pickax, and earthenware flask. You could see the underground prison, statue of Hermes and Si Jagur cannon in the garden side in the museum.Underground Prisonrison
The prison located underneath the building under the garden side in the museum. The hall shaped as half round, dark and musty. The wall of the prison made of concretes with iron bars at the front side. You still can see the iron balls as sized as volleyball which used to be tied up to the prisoners feet.
Statue of HermesIn the Greek mythology Hermes was the God of fortune, protector for the traders, and the news sender God. Hermes Statue at the garden side in the museum was a grant from the Ernst Stolz family to thank Batavia governor for the opportunity to trade in Nederland Indies.
Si Jagur Cannon
Si Jagur cannon was from in Macao. The cannon was brought to Malako by the Portugal fleet that was dominating Malaka at that time. In 1641 the Dutch fleet brought the cannon to Batavia. The weight of Si Jagur cannon is 3.5 tons with length of 3.84 meters and 25 cm diameter of the pitch. There’s a script “Ex me ipsa renata sum” written on the cannon, which means “from myself, I’m reborn”. Some people believe that Si Jagur cannon is the symbol of fertility, may be because of the script and the how the finger shaped at the back end of its body.
- The location of Jakarta History Museum is near to Wayang Museum Indonesia, Fine Art and Ceramic Museum and Batavia Cafe which are also interesting places to visit.
- Jakarta History Museum located at the Kota Tua Jakarta (Old City) area, which used to be known as Batavia. There are still many buildings from the Batavia age around the museum, like Batavia Cafe, Red Shop (Toko Merah), Kota Intan Bridge (Jembatan Kota Intan), Batavia Hotel, Maritime Museum Jakarta (Bahari Museum), Syahbandar Tower, and Sunda Kelapa Harbor.
- Bank Mandiri Museum and Bank Indonesia Museum located at the cross of busway terminal, about 300 meters away from Jakarta History Museum. If you are interested in Indonesian money and banking history, then you should visit these museums. You might want to enjoy the Kota Tua Station for the unique inside the station, and seeing the activities inside.
To reach Jakarta History Museum you could ride a taxi or public transportation, like busway. If you choose to ride busway, please ride the first corridor busway with Blok M to Kota Tua Jakarta (Old City) route. You need to get off at the Kota Tua Terminal which is the last terminal where the busway will stop before go back to Blok M. You could reach Jakarta History Museum by walk from the terminal, since the distance is only about 300 meters, or you could ride a bicycle which local people call as bicycle ojek.
Jl. Taman Fatahillah No. 1 Jakarta Barat
Telp. (021) 6929101
Fax. (021) 6902387.
Open hours: Tuesday to Sunday
09.00 – 15.00. Closed: Monday and Holidays