The History Museum of Yerevan State University is the first, biggest and richest among all university museums in Armenia.
Upon Decision № 5 of the Rector dated May 22, the foundation of the History Museum of Yerevan State University was laid. Initially it was functioning as a study room and was located in the first university building (52 Abovyan). In 1965 it was relocated to the 5th, then later to the 7th floor of the central building of the newly constructed university complex.
In 1988 upon the basis of the history study room, the research laboratory of Armenia’s higher education history with a museum adjacent to it was established in the YSU section of scientific investigations.
On January 1, 1995 the museum became an independent infrastructural unit and was named the History Museum of Yerevan State University. Professor L. Gharibjanyan was appointed as Founding Director.
In 2009 the museum was renovated to fit the logic of exhibitions, and a new exhibition with several sections was launched.
On the occasion of the centennial of the establishment of Yerevan State University, upon Decision № 1/1 of the Academic Council, dated September 2, 2019, the museum was named after Professor Ludvig Gharibjanyan for his invaluable contribution to the establishment and further development of the museum.
The primary focus of the museum is on the exhibition of the history of the Alma Mater, which explores the structure, faculties, rectors, founding professors, illustrious scientists of Yerevan State University and depicts the students’ active life and the strong collaborative ties YSU shares with other universities overseas.
Here one can gain insight into how the higher education system evolved in Armenia and how most Armenian universities originated from the relevant faculties of Yerevan State University.
Particularly noteworthy are the exhibition banners honoring the memory of those YSU professors and students who fell during the Great Patriotic and the Nagorno-Karabakh Wars and the display cases featuring their photos, documents, personal belongings and books written in their memory.
The archeological section of the museum stands out for its fascinating exhibits. Its establishment was based on artifacts from the Stone Age to the Middle Ages, donated to the museum by the Institute of Archaeology and Ethnography of the RA NAS and uncovered during the archeological campaigns conducted by the Department of Archeology and Ethnography of YSU Faculty of History.
The above-mentioned department often holds specialized seminars in the museum, familiarizing the students with the archaeological treasures of the Armenian Highlands. These exhibits are not only of didactic value in terms of helping to expand the university students’ specialized knowledge, but are also crucial to the scientific research carried out by local and foreign experts.
Throughout the 60 years of its existence the museum has constantly been enriched with various materials (photos, personal belongings, valuable documents, artifacts, artworks, paintings by celebrated artists, portraits of the greatest minds of our university as well as autographed books, equipment, etc.).
Towards the centennial of the establishment of Yerevan State University, the museum was supplemented by numerous new materials relating to the university and evolution of the higher educational system in Armenia. Such exceptional specimens were displayed as the Law on the Establishment of Yerevan State University, adopted by the Council of Ministers of the First Republic of Armenia on May 16, 1919; the minutes of the meetings convened by the Organizing Committee; the first Charter of Yerevan University, the first curriculum, handwritten books and many other documents of olden days.
A separate corner in the museum is dedicated to the memory of those YSU professors and graduates who suffered political repression during the Great Purge back in the 1930s. It provides exclusive information elicited from the National Archives of Armenia. A new exhibition hall featuring the gifts given to YSU by its guests on many different occasions was also launched.
The museum regularly organizes temporary and travelling thematic exhibitions, didactic excursions, round-table discussions and various events in memory of the YSU freedom-fighters.
It should be noted that the museum also serves as a venue for research into the history of Yerevan State University, the life and scientific activity of eminent professors, and materials related to YSU freedom-fighters who fell in battles in defence of Nagorno-Karabakh. As a result a number of valuable books have been published.
The museum closely cooperates with the university museums in Armenia, YSU faculties, the National Archives of Armenia, the Institute of Archaeology and Ethnography of the RA NAS. Due to this collaboration, a number of important documents and items have been restored.
Every year the university hosts freshmen and high-school students, familiarizing them with YSU history, the greatest minds and graduates who have risen to fame in the field of science and who enjoy tremendous popularity worldwide. This tradition instills love in the students, enhances their evaluation of the Alma Mater and adds to their understanding of the honorary title of a YSU student. It also supports students from schools in clearly understanding of their future choice of speciality.
The YSU History Museum annually receives over 2000 guests – schoolchildren, students, local and foreign visitors who show a keen interest in the history of Yerevan State University and write down words of appreciation in the Book of Impressions.
The museum is open on weekdays (Monday-Friday).
The YSU History Museum has been headed by Heghine Gasparyan since July, 2013.