Collections

Free Public Tours

Explore the Museum with the
curatorial team every weekend.

Time: Saturday and Sunday
11:30 am English Tour
12:30 pm Hindi/Marathi Tour
Open to all.
Museum ticket applicable.

Mumbai (Bombay) History


The Museum’s collection of miniature clay models, dioramas, maps, lithographs, photographs and rare books document and illustrate the life of the people of Mumbai and the history of the city from the late 18th to early 20th centuries.

In early 1900s the curators envisioned the Museum to be a centre for the collection and exhibition of pictorial records and antiquities of the history of the city and the neighbourhood in which the Museum was situated. A collection of facsimiles of maps, plans, prints and photographs of the islands of Bombay (now Mumbai) were procured. This collection was opened to the public in 1918. Dated between 1600 and 1900, the collection records the architectural history of the city and its evolution from seven islands to a vibrant urban centre or the Urbs Prima in Indis (first city in India) by the mid 19th century. It also chronicles the evolution in geography that resulted from invasions, economic growth and urban planning. On display are maps depicting the development of Bombay from the late 17th – early 20th centuries.

The collection includes models of the earliest boats in the city’s harbour, the first textile mills in Worli and a diorama of Bombay Castle, the administrative headquarters at the heart of the British Fort.

The Museum’s collection of glass negatives is a visual record of 19th century Mumbai. The collection has more than 1500 glass negatives and documents various aspects of the city including architecture, prominent citizens and old city views.


Heptanesia
(1294 -1662 AD)
Relief Map
Koli Couple, People of Mumbai
Late 19th to early 20th century
Clay models
Model of a Hodi
Wood
cloth and cotton thread
Map of Bombay and the district prepared for Peshwa by the Peshwa's agent in Bombay about 1770
Watercolour on Paper

Bombay View
C.1860
Handcoloured engraving
Grose's Plan of Bombay
1750
Watercolour on paper
People of Mumbai
Late 19th to early 20th century
Clay models
Weighing Cotton at Bombay for the English Market
1862
Engraving

The Town Hall, Bombay
1893
Engraving
Model of a Dredger, Kuphus
1914
Wood and metal

The Island of Bombay by Captain Thomas Dickinson
1816-1890
Watercolour on paper
Street Scene of Old Bombay
19th century
Lithograph print of a watercolour painting

Model of Worli area after development
1940
Relief Map
Parsi Couple, People of Mumbai
Late 19th to early 20th century
Clay models



Jewish Couple from Baghdad, People of Mumbai
Late 19th to early 20th century
Clay Models

Bellasis Road Chawls
Diorama

Flora Fountain
Late 19th to early 20th century
Glass negative
Elephanta Elephant
5th century AD
Stone
Dhobi Couple, People of Mumbai
Late 19th to early 20th century
Clay models
Surati Bohra Couple, People of Mumbai
Late 19th to early 20th century
Clay models