The "Museo dell'Emigrazione Italiana" or the Museum Paolo Cresci for history of Italian is located at the Palazzo Ducale in Lucca in the chapel of St. Mary of Mercy and in the rooms that are adjacent to it. The church is built in Roman building and is first mentioned in a document of 1131. The museum is named after the photographer Florentine Paolo Cresci.
The museum is important one in Lucca and comprises of various documents that are related to the Italian letters, history, documents, diaries and also photos from the lives of the Italians and is regarded as a vast and valuable collection of documents that exist in Italy in the country’s history. There are exhibitions in the building that come in stages of the immigrant right from the beginning when they started searching for jobs.
The museum has been created for the purpose of providing insight into the issues of the migrants, the number so migrants, the return, departures, remittances and more. The museum emphasizes on providing information regarding the tolerance and the acceptance of immigrants.
Paolo Cresci lived from 1943 to 1997 and was a scientific photographer at the University of Florence and a collector of immigration documents. His research and collection began in the 70s, and he put together the collection of materials like magazines, photos, and books. His work is rich and very important to the history of Italy.
The museum displays sections of his collections in various stages of the migration process like the creation of new cities, highlight the issues of coexistence and more.
The findings in the museum
The exhibition in the museum shows the different stages of emigrants. It depicts the living conditions of the emigrants who left Italy at the time of “great migration”. Since it was an agriculture based country, it depicts how they used to live in poverty in the rural areas. It exhibits various mixed stuff, including rare documents, passports, guides for immigrants, medical certificates, holy pictures, snapshots of emigrants to the ports, scenes of life on board and more.
The various documents and photographs are truly a way that will take you back in those times and know a little more about the people and the social history of the individuals and the society as a whole. It also represents the complexity of the society and the diversity of the land along with the historical situations that varied in every aspect. In the museum are displayed boards that display the documents of importance and the original objects, archival and modern images and the clips and footage from historical times that have been taken from the movies to have a deeper understanding of the times gone by.
A visitor can also get a closer look through the computerized method that is also provided here. You will be interested in learning about and know the interviews on the immigration from Italy to America that took place during the 19th century.
The museum also displays the living conditions of those who wanted to emigrate and how they survived and their experiences.
May 1 to September 30: 10.00 A.M. to 12.30 P.M.; 3.00 P.M. to 6.30 P.M.
closed on Mondays
1 October to 30 April: from 9.30 A.M. to 12.30P.M.; 2.30 P.M. to 5.30 P.M.
closed on Mondays