The Tuma Storyteller House-Museum “Tales and True Stories”
Ryazan region, Klepikovsky district, Tuma village, Sovetskaya st., 68
Tel.: +7 (977) 503-26-92.
Founder and owner of the museum
Alexey Nikolaevich Gushan
The idea of creating a house-museum came unexpectedly, as is often the case with creative people, and quickly took over every part of my life. I developed the project of the house-museum and designed an original guided tour. My house, located in the historical center of Tuma near the majestic Trinity Church, was chosen as the place for the museum. The project started in June 2020. First, we collected the necessary materials, and on that basis created four interactive zones (three of them are outdoors):
1) The Dashing Zone (a robber’s lair under an ancient oak). This part of the exhibition presents the unofficial symbol of Tuma, forest bandits, and other outlaws who lived in the vicinity of Tuma in the past centuries and tells the story of bandits’ treasures hidden in the region.
2) The Fireweed Zone focuses on the tradition of Russian tea parties and the most popular Russian tea – fireweed, or Ivan-tea. In this area, visitors are offered Meshchera herb tea from a samovar with forest and garden berries, a homemade pastry, and honey.
3) The Bee Zone. This zone is devoted to the gold of Meshchera – honey.
4) The Oleshkino Zone. This indoor part of the exhibition describes in detail the life of the local people from the 18th to the early 20th centuries and the crafts and craftsmen of the Tuma region (woodcarvers, stove makers, carpenters, blacksmiths, potters). It tells the story of the life of Olesha, the Tuma storyteller and a descendant of the ancient Novgorodians exiled to this region under Ivan the Terrible.
Unfortunately, today the village doesn’t even have a local history museum. But without any doubt, the creation and implementation of the Tuma Storyteller House-Museum “Tales and True Stories” will provide the impetus to create a local history museum and other tourist attractions in the village. Tuma is located at the intersection of two of the most interesting tourist roads – The Golden Ring of Russia and the Emerald Ring of Meshchera. That’s why it became our main goal to increase the tourist attractiveness of the village and to preserve the historical and cultural heritage of Tumsky krai (the historical name of the region between Spas-Klepikov and Kasimov). The historical material and legends are presented in the unusual form of fairy tales (oral narrative), which surely will be interesting for both adults and children. The Tuma Storyteller House-Museum “Tales and True Stories” is perfect for the whole family.
The development of the exhibition is still in progress today. The main part of the museum’s collection came from the founder’s private collection of clay toys and pottery. With the support of the local community, the museum continues to collect household items of the peasantry, photographs, paintings, and other pieces necessary to design a creative space for the museum.