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On 1 August 1914 Tsar Ferdinand issued an edict which established the Military History Commission at the Bulgarian Army’s Headquarters. It included a museum, an archive and a library. On 4 July 1916 the actual formation of the museum’s collection started. The Military Museum is the third national museum structure after dividing the first Bulgarian National Museum into Archeological and Ethnographic Museums in 1906. The military history museum included all the military history house-museums established after 1879. The first exhibition of the Central Military Museum was opened on 12 May 1937. In 1949 the museum was renamed to Central Museum of the National Army. In 1952 it opened new exhibition. In 1956 a restoration workshop started work at the museum. In 1968 it was turned into a national institution and was named National Museum of Military History (NMMH). The NMMH explores, keeps, processes scientifically and makes popular the cultural values related to the national and European military history. The museum operates throughout the entire country. In its almost century long existence it has collected and preserved over one million exhibits. Today the Museum spreads on area of 5,000 sq.m. One of the collections in the museum – Arms, is the best completed Bulgarian collection of cold steel and firearms, including exhibits from 4th century BC and currently used arms. It presents Balkan and Eastern arms made by prominent masters and models of leading world companies. The museum keeps the personal arms of all the prominent figures from the National Revival until today.
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