The history of the museum house
The Museum House Semič building boasts a lively past. It was built in 1838 as the first school structure in our town. It served as a cradle of knowledge until 1931, when a new, larger primary school was built in Semič.
During World War II, it was the location of various educational programmes for partisan fighters: the school for leaders of the League of Communist Youth of Yugoslavia, the first course for propagandists and correspondents, and the school for national defence.
It went on to house the local field administration office, the medical station, police station, and post office, until it became used as a residential building in the 1960s.
In 1973, it was the location of the ceremonious opening of the Town Museum Collection Semič with the then director of the Bela Krajina Museum, Metlika Jože Dular as keynote speaker. On this occasion, the museum collection became a branch unit of the Bela Krajina Museum, Metlika, which it remains to this day.
In 2019, the Semič Museum was entirely renovated in the framework of the Misterion project. The building and activities in the museum are run by Kulturni center Semič (Semič Cultural Centre), the viticulture and history collections are maintained by the Bela Krajina Museum, Metlika, and the natural history collection is in the care of the Slovenian Museum of Natural History and the Municipality of Semič.
Museum house Semič's mission
The Museum House Semič building is innovatively designed and houses a clever combination of Semič’s cultural heritage and the natural resources from all of the Bela krajina region.
The history and viticulture exhibitions reveal several thousand years’ worth of activities in Semič and its immediate surroundings, significantly contributing to our understanding and knowledge of the local identity and traditions and their numerous endemic features. The carefully chosen museum pieces give visitors a sense of the hardships and successes in the lives of the Semič townspeople across different time-periods.
The natural history collection covers the entire Bela krajina region and accentuates all of the area’s natural features: minerals, animal life, vegetation, and waters. The collection familiarises the general public with the special features and wonders of the karstic landscape and increases awareness about the exceptional importance of preserving water sources in the vulnerable karstic environment.
All three collections excel at bringing various educational content to children, young people, and adults. This promotes a culture of living of a higher level and the awareness of how inevitably our past, present, and future intertwine.
The museum is located in the centre of the market town of Semič at St Stephen’s Church, which is visible from afar on all sides. Semič is 96 km away from Ljubljana and 30 km away from Novo mesto. You can visit us by train or bus. However, the most comfortable way of getting here is by car. You can take the Ljubljana – Novo mesto motorway and continue from Novo mesto across the Gorjanci hill range to Jugorje and Semič; alternatively, you can take the exit already in Ivančna Gorica, and continue on to Semič via Žužemberk, Dolenjske Toplice, and Črmošnjice.
The Museum House is easily accessible to persons with reduced mobility. Parking reserved for persons with reduced mobility is available right next to the museum. The viticulture collection is accessible from the ground floor via a linear hallway, while the history and art history collections are accessible by lift and set up for unobstructed exploration. A toilet for the disabled is available on the ground floor. Welcome!