About the Museum

The Haáz Rezső Museum is the museum of ethnography, local history, art, and natural science of the central part of Szeklerland, a territory in the south-east of Transylvania, formerly known as Odorhei region. According to the present administration, its collecting area includes the western parts of Harghita County, which are the territories among the two Homoroade Rivers and along high up the Târnava Mare and Târnava Mică Rivers. The population of this area is represented by the Szeklers, the most eastern group of the Hungarian nation (along the Csángós). It remained a pure Hungarian area in a Transylvania with an ethnically puzzle-like structure.
The Haáz Rezső Museum is one of the eldest scientific and educational institutions of the city, but of Transylvania as well. The first inventory (Protocollum) of the Reformed college, a school founded by Count János Bethlen, which dates back to 1797, is evidence for the fact, that next to the library, there were the bases of the collection of antiques, numismatics and geology. However, other collections also exited at that time, like that of physics and natural sciences, of rarities of nature, of relics, of blazons and flags. While other initiatives failed, the almost four thousand pieces of the collection of folk art, founded by art teacher Rezső Haáz (1883–1958), formed the bases of an independent museum. The collection has been a public one since 1913, while in 1950 it was declared a state (rayon) museum.
The museum was given its own building only in 1968, while later on; in 1978 the building of the Permanent Gallery was annexed to it. At that time the László Tompa and Sándor Tomcsa memorial room was also finalized. In 1990 the institution was reunited with the Scientific Library of the city, a museum-like collection of 76 000 volumes, from which in fact the museum itself was raised in the beginning. The public collection was reinstalled into the custody of the city, becoming an independent institution, a legal entity. The management of the city, realizing the importance of cultural institutions in the present minority condition, have sustained them at a degree that could have never been imagined before. The museum was given a hectare of land in front of the tomb of Balázs Orbán from Seiche, where – starting with the year 1972 – a series of Szekler gates were raised, the basis for a later open air museum.