The Indigenous Museum, dedicated to the history and
culture of Native Brazil
The Indian Museum, also known as the Indigenous Museum, is dedicated
to the history and culture of native Brazilians. The museum is focused
on promoting a better understanding of the Native Brazilian culture.
Constructed in 1880, the museum is a beautiful example of early
residences built during the urbanization of the Botafogo neighborhood.
A scientific-cultural arm of the National Indian Foundation, the
museum contains 14,000 objects, 16,000 national and foreign works
on indigenous etymology, 550,000 textual documents. As well as,
50,000 images, 28 films, 41 records, 61 video and 48 sound tapes.
Recently, the Indigenous Museum enlisted a group of Native Brazilians
to build a Une, which is a large Indian home approximately 5 meters
tall and 15 meters wide. The home was created authentically and
includes hammocks, cooking pans, flutes and straw skirts. It gives
an accurate portrait of how the natives decorate their homes. There
are also genuine Indian crafts available for sale in the Museum
The Indigenous Museum is home to some of the most innovative and
artistic exhibits in the world, there are wall-sized black and white
photos adorned with colored feathers and a large display of children’s
toys that hang from the ceiling. An exhibit of hunting artifacts
and history is set up in a dark room with a single ray of light
illuminating the floor which casts a glow on spears and animal skulls.
Although the exhibits in the Indigenous museum are presented in
Portuguese text, the vivid exhibits speak for themselves. There
is even a children’s gallery which includes washable body
paint and a selection of stamps so that children can adorn themselves
as warriors, chiefs, hunters, or shamans. Many of the displays and
exhibits are outside and there is also a beautiful garden consisting
of medicinal herbs, corn, manioc peanuts, and beans that surround
the Une which was constructed by Guarni Indians from Bracui. The
Indigenous Museum is open from Tuesdays to Fridays from 10 a.m.
to 17:30 p.m. and weekends from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.
Also located in the Botafogo Quarter near the Indigenous Museum
are many other great sites including the Casa de Rui Barbosa. Formerly
the home of Rui Barbosa, the building is now a museum that includes
his furniture and personal possessions as well as a library of law
and native Brazilian literature. Mirante do Pasmado is a area in
a natural park that has a beautiful view of Guanabara Bay and the
Sugar Loaf. Also close by is the Palacio da Cidade, an absolute
gorgeous piece of architecture that formerly housed the prefecture.
All of these locations are well worth the stop and are near enough
to each other that they can be visited on the same day as the Indigenous
From the Indigenous Museum back to Rio-de-Janeiro.info