Muzeum Sopotu

Księcia Józefa Poniatowskiego 8, 81-724 Sopot
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  • Parking for guests

Description

The Museum of Sopot was established in February 2001. A historic, eclectic villa located in a garden right next to the Sopot beach was chosen as the seat of the newly created institution. It was built in the years 1903-1904 for the family of a Gdańsk merchant and entrepreneur Ernst August Claaszen (1853-1924). The villa's architect was Walter Schulz.

Ernst August Claaszen, builder and the first owner of the villa, was born in Gdańsk on December 30, 1853. He was the son of Jean Rudolph Claaszen and Johanna Charlotte Duske. Claaszens belonged to the middle class of Gdańsk bourgeoisie. Ernst August graduated from the School of Commerce in 1872 and went to London to do a few years of professional practice there. Upon his return to Gdańsk, he married Agnes Maria Wilhelmina Wendt. After a year, their son, Arthur, was born. Agnes died as a result of complications after childbirth. He remarried in 1890 to Martha Steinmeyer. From this marriage two daughters were born: Theodora (1890–1980) and Ruth Asta (1907–2005). In 1904, the Claaszens moved into a villa in Sopot. Arthur and Theodora's first husband, Gunther Pfeffer, died during World War I. The Great Depression led Ernst August Claaszen to bankruptcy, who committed suicide in 1924. After 4 difficult years, the widow decided to sell the villa to Oscar Emil Meltzner.

The new owners, the Meltzner family, lived in the villa until 1945. Initially, the house belonged to Oskar Emil Meltzner, but relatively quickly it was sold to Herbert, Oskar's son. Herbert moved to the villa with his family: wife Helga-Ida-Clara and children: Inge and Klaus-Dieter. The Meltzners escaped from Sopot from the incoming Soviet troops in January 1945 on board a military ship. After the end of hostilities, the house was taken over by the Polish State Treasury. Initially, it was reserved for the President of the Republic of Poland, Bolesław Bierut. Ultimately, however, the villa was put at the disposal of Eugeniusz Kwiatkowski. He lived there with his relatives. The villa at 8 Księcia Józefa Poniatowskiego Street was the home of the Kwiatkowski family for nearly 3 years. Later it was still used as the so-called government office (rządówka) - politicians stopped there, including Józef Cyrankiewicz with Nina Andrycz. In the years 1989–2001 the villa housed the Psychological and Pedagogical Counseling Center. In 2001, the building was designated as the seat of the Museum of Sopot. The mission of the Museum is to collect and popularize knowledge about Sopot by building a living relationship with its inhabitants as well as scientific and research activities. The Museum of Sopot organizes exhibitions, social and educational projects and a collection devoted to the culture and history of the city.

Terms and conditions

As part of the Tourist Card, the Sopot Museum offers free admission to the permanent exhibition for the user of the active card