National Museum of Transport and Communications

The city of Ruse is on the banks of the River Danube in northern Bulgaria. The National Museum of Transport and Communications is principally concerned with railways and is located in Bulgaria’s first railway station, opened in 1866 on the route from Western Europe to Istanbul through the Black Sea port of Varna. The station was rebuilt into its present form in 1879, and was made redundant in 1954 when the completion of the Friendship Bridge to Romania led to the diversion of the line that served it. A museum was soon established in the old station, and was acknowledged as the National Museum of Transport and Communication in 1996. The collection includes ten steam locomotives, one of them an 0-6-0 built by Sharp Stewart in Manchester in 1868. There is also a German Krieglok 2-10-0 freight locomotive from the Second World War. Other vehicles include the personal carriages of King Ferdinand I (1861-1948) and King Boris III (1894-1943), the latter built at Wrocław in 1911, and a carriage built for the Ottoman sultan in 1866 which has a compartment for his harem. There is also a carriage which dates from 1902 which was used as a mobile headquarters by Marshal Fyodor Tolbuhin (1894-1949), the Soviet general who led the Red Army’s campaign in Bulgaria in 1944. There are indoor displays of uniforms, models and tickets, and the stationmaster’s office has been reconstructed. Visitors can enjoy rides in hand-propelled carts once used for the maintenance of the permanent way. The museum also includes a small display relating to the Danube navigation.

National Museum of Transport and Communications
5 Bratya Obretenevi Street
7000 Ruse
Bulgaria
+359 (0) 82 - 834707
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