The Urjala local history museum is located on a quiet and idyllic hill. It displays the way of life of Häme farmers in the late 19th century and of a smallholder craftsman in the 1940s. The eight museum buildings were brought to the site from around Urjala, and the artefacts that fill them were all donated. The museum was opened to the public in 1950.
The main farm building was built in the late 18th century. Its decor is representative of the way of life in the area in the late 19th century. The windmill is from the late 19th century and fully functional. The oldest building on the site is a 17th-century storehouse for the equipment of a soldier, who was maintained by a division of farmers. Grain, food supplies, and clothes were kept in the other storehouses. Agricultural and household tools from the 19th century are on display in the tool storehouse.
Another building is occupied by a maker of rocking chairs from the 1940s. The manufacture of Urjala-style rocking chairs began in the town during the 1860s, and around the turn of the century it became an important cottage industry. Dozens of craftsmen manufactured rocking chairs. These were often people who lived and worked in the same room in a small cottage. Also, there is a small shoemaker’s room in the porch portion of the building.
The area also has a replica of a frontline entrenchment, which was originally located on the banks of Lake Syväri during the Continuation War (part of WWII). The shelter provided accommodation to half a rifle platoon – about 20 men. In the vicinity of this dugout are trenches dug by Russians who built fortifications in the area in 1915–1917.
The museum’s summer café offers refreshments to visitors. An event called ‘Pentinkulma Days’ is held at the museum each year. The museum is along the Väinö Linna Trail, which runs through many interesting sites in Urjala. Please note that the museum area is not suitable for people with limited mobility.
Museum’s 10 Gems
Photos © Miia Hinnerichsen, Pirkanmaa Provincial Museum, 2011