Muscat: Navigational charts, archaeological samples and historical works are among the exhibits available to visitors to the home of Omani national Badr bin Said Al Senani, which was recently converted into a museum.
Al Senani, who is himself a researcher, has nearly 5,000 exhibits at his museum, with some of the items on display dating back to 1874.
Speaking to Times of Oman, he said that his museum first took root because of his fondness for collecting rare and historical antiques that spoke of his country’s past.
“I started my collection about 12 years ago, and began collecting rare pieces that include old documents and navigational charts,” said Al Senani, who hails from Sur in the Governorate of South Al Sharqiyah. “There are about 150 very old navigational maps in this exhibition.
“My museum includes a number of rooms where different classes of exhibits are placed,” he added. “These include the museum library, the hall of documents, manuscripts and nautical charts, a space for old copies of the Holy Quran, and an antique section. The exhibition features around 80 manuscripts.”
The Ministry of Heritage and Tourism has also paid a visit to Al Senani’s collection – an event that made him very happy – although interest in his museum has naturally waned this year, because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The goal of my museum is to create a fixed location, where people can learn about history,” he said. “I hope for my museum to be a mirror into our past and our future. This exhibition will be larger in the future, and I am doing my best to ensure it receives very good feedback, in the form of the historical collection visitors can see here. I will strive to get additional pieces into the museum, so that I can help serve as large a segment as possible, of the local and regional community.
Badr Al Senani has also been attending archaeological conferences both at home and abroad, enabling him to spread awareness about his collection, so that more will know about his efforts to preserve Oman’s heritage, which he hopes will lead to more citizens, residents and tourists coming to his museum to gain extensive knowledge about the Sultanate’s history.