N.I. "Institute and Museum" - Bitola
The building where the NI Institute and Museum Bitola is located today, also known as the “Old Barracks” was built in 1848 with the purpose of serving as a military High school “Idadie”(turk.). It was probably designed by Constantinople architects and built by the locals as a complex building with a rectangular shape and a central open yard- patio. The building was built in the style of a calm Neo-Renaissance.
Today, this building is a rare witness to the longing, the idea and the construction of a larger construction unit, with which after Constantinople, Bitola was to grow up into one of more important centres in the Ottoman Empire. Together with the two huge barracks (today destroyed – the Red and White) this building was connected in a common whole, as part of a seriously developed urban concept, a characteristic for larger metropolises. With facilities such as the Officers’ Home, the Military School, the Red and White Barracks, the Dzepane, the southern part of Bitola received a view and concreteness in correlation with the Istanbul construction works.
In the period from 1896 to 1899, the father of modern Turkey – Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, was educated and lived here. Later in 1909, the school was transformed into a higher institution and became a military academy – Harabie. After the Balkan Wars until 1974, the building had a military purpose, hence the name “Old Barracks”.
Since 1983, this building has been adapted into a museum that keeps over 100,000 exhibits, some of which are displayed in a permanent museum exhibit.
In the museum space of about 700 square meters the representative museum exhibit is displayed, which presents the rich cultural heritage of the Pelagonija region. Starting from 4 fragments of the lower jaw of a 10 million year-old mammoth, continuing with artifacts from the Neolithic, antiquity, early Christianity, the Middle Ages, the Balkans and the two World Wars, consular, all the way to modern Bitola.
The museum acquires its special value with the memorial room dedicated to the life and work of Mustafa Kemal Ataturk.