Archeology Museum
  • Brief History of the Deccan College

    The Deccan College has a long, glorious and eventful history of the last 195 years. The word "Deccan" after which the College is named is associated with the Deccan Plateau, forming the geological foundations of western India. The Institution (Deccan College) was established out of the donations given by Peshwas to Brahmins and was known as "Dakshina fund". After obtaining the permission from the British Government by the then Governor of Bombay Presidency Mountstuart Elphinstone a "Sanskrit School" was started on 6th October 1821 at Vishrambagwada. For western learning an "English School" was started in 1842. In 1851 the Sanskrit School and the English School were merged to form the Poona College. In 1868, it was shifted to the present location having 125 acres of land and renamed as Deccan College as large number of students were started coming to the institute not only from Pune but from the whole Deccan area for study purpose. It was run by the Presidency Government up to 1934 and due to financial crisis it was closed down. But some of the past students filed case against Government and due to the Court order it was reopened on 17th August 1939 as a Post-Graduate and Research Institute. In academic year 1994-95, U.G.C. gave Deemed University status to the Institute. Since 1939 it has become the foremost centre of higher learning and research in Ancient Indian History and Archaeology, Linguistics, Sanskrit, Anthropology, Sociology and Maratha History. Presently three subjects; Ancient Indian History, Culture & Archaeology, Linguistics and Sanskrit are taught and three courses; Diploma, M.A. and Ph.D. are offered in all the three departments. During the course of time the institute has produced many renowned scholars like; Lokmanya Balgangadhar Tilak (freedom fighter), G.G. Agarkar (social reformer) Prof. R.D. Ranade (justice and philosopher), Sir R. G. Bhandarkar (orientalist), R.N. Dandekar (Sanskritist), N.D. Nagarwala (educationist and sports patron), Appa Pant (Diplomat), Dwakanath Kotnis and others.

  • Department of Archaeology

    The then Department of Archaeology was established by the eminent archaeologist, Padam Bhushan Prof. H.D. Sankalia in 1939. He joined Deccan College as Professor of Indian pre and proto history on 17th August 1939 and thus started the golden era of modern Indian Archaeology. Within short period of time, the institute started carrying out explorations and excavations in all parts of the country. The first excavation was undertaken at Langhnaj, Gujarat, a Mesolithic site. Then excavations in different parts of India were carried out like Nevasa, Brahmapuri, Apegaon, Patne, Ter, Bhokardan, Nasik-Jorwe, Paithan, Inamgaon, Walki, Kaothe, Mahurjhari, Naikund, Khairwada, Chaul, Morgaon, Bhon, Siddhapur, Junnar, Shiur etc. in Maharashtra, Rangpur, Akhaj, Valsna, Somnath, Prabhas-Patan, Dwarka, Kuntasi, Padri etc. in Gujarat, Maheshwar, Navadatoli, Mahadeo-Piparia, Bhimbetka, Kayatha, Samnapur etc. in Madhya-Pradesh, Tilwara, Bagor, Didwana, Balathal etc. in Rajasthan, Tekkakota, Sangankallu, Hunsgi, Budhihal, Isampur etc. in Karnataka. Due to all these excavations large number of antiquities right from Stone Age period to the medieval period have been collected. The Department also houses eight different scientific laboratories namely archaeological chemistry, archaeozoology, palaeobotany, palynology, palaeontology, geomorphology, biological anthropology and computer archaeology to analyze data found in excavations, which none other University Department of Archaeology in the country has. Presently the Department is known as Department of Ancient Indian History, Culture and Archeology.

  • Educational Activities of the Museum

    The museum is also engaged in Public Education Activities;

    1. Guided Tours

    The Museum organizes guided tours to school and college students as the collection of the museum is educationally important for them. Especially the period between July to November large number of students from Pune and other places of the country even from abroad visit the museum.


    2. Temporary Exhibitions

    In addition to permanent galleries the Museum organizes temporary exhibitions in Pune and other places, for the last several years more than 50 such exhibitions have been organized; Pune, Solapur, Ahamadnagar, Phaltan, Islampur, Gargoti, Sagaroli, Mumbai, Shirur, Angar, Sangola, Nasik, Bangalore, New Delhi and one exhibition also in abroad at Colombo. Temporary exhibitions have also been organized at excavation sites like Inamgaon, Nevasa, Tripuri, Shiur etc. All exhibitions were highly appreciated by people.


    3. One-Day Workshop in Archaeology and History for School Teachers

    For the last 20 years, every year the Archaeology Museum and the Maratha History Museum of the Institute are organizing such workshops for the benefit of school teachers teaching subjects like history, science, social studies, etc. The aim of this workshop is that the teachers should visit our museums and scientific labs and then should bring their students to the museum, so the benefit goes to the students. We experience that due to it the number of students have been increased.


    4. Temple Survey Works

    The museum staff is engaged in studying the temples, their remains, sculptures, monuments, caves etc. Public response is also very encouraging and due to it many new discoveries have been brought into light or the existing monuments have been restudied.

  • New Museum Building

    Deccan College received a substantial grant from the Govt. of Maharashtra for the construction of new Museum building. The plan of the building was prepared by architect in consultation of members of Museum committee. For the last few years construction of the proposed building was is in progress and now the building is almost ready. According to the plan of the building there will be 8 galleries depicting various branches of Archaeology and Medieval Archaeology. There is also provision for multimedia hall, conservation lab, meeting hall, office room for staff, reception counter, waiting hall, and a canteen. It is hoped that in future the Institute will receive some more funding from the Government and first floor to the building will also be added and remaining galleries will also be shifted.

  • The Archeology Museum

    Archeology Museum

    History of the Museum can be divided into six phases as follows;

    Phase-I, 1940 – 1961

    The Museum was established in 1940 in the main building built in 1864. The Department of Archaeology was established by Prof. H.D. Sankalia in 1939. He and his colleagues immediately started carrying out archaeological field work, explorations and excavations in all parts of the country. First site excavated by his was Langhnaj in Gujrat in 1942. But whatever material was available, out of the very small collection the museum was established 1940. Than many other sites were excavated like Brahmapur, Rangpur, Nasik, Jorwe, Mahashwar, Navadatoli, Nevasa, Tripuri, Ter, Chandoli, Ahar, Lalitpur etc. Prof. Sankalia organised temporary exhibitions at some the sites like Navadatoli, Nevasa and Tripuri. Antiquities of all these sites were displayed in the museums, slowly museum collection was increasing. During this phase there was no separate staff for the museum. One of the teachers of Department of Archeology was asked to look after the museum.


    Phase –II, 1962- 1982

    In 1962 the present building of Department of A.I.H.C. & Archaeology was constructed. On the first floor of the Department, specially designed galleries of museum were constructed. Thus the museum was shifted from main building to this newly constructed building in 1962.There were only four galleries in the museum namely; Stone Age gallery, Central hall, Chalcolithic gallery, Megalithic & Early Historic gallery. Old horizontal showcases, separate vertical showcases fixed on the walls, free standing showcases with four side glass and big wooden open stands were in use for display of antiquities in the museum. The Early Historic gallery at present then was used to house various scientific laboratories; Archaeozoology, Palaeontology, Palaeobotany and Anthropology. In the Central Hall excavated material from some sites was displayed in four horizontal showcases, replica of Nevasa section depicting cultural sequence of Nevasa and big relief map of India was kept horizontally on the floor in the centre of the hall. Prof. H.D. Sankalia was Director between1971-1973, then Dr. Amrut Ghatge became Director and between 1978- 1985, Prof. S.B.Deo was the Director of the Institute. During this phase one Museum Assistant Shri Gowind Rao Jogalekar was appointed for museum and one post of Curator was newly created. Shri Pramod Dandwate was selected as first Curator of the Museum who started working since January 1980 till 2010. Shri Jogalker got retired as Museum Assistant in 1981and Dr. V.T.Kakde was appointed on his place. He was a good artist and his major contribution to the museum was a big canvas painting depicting the cultural life of Megalithic Vidarbh which is still in the Megalithic gallery of the museum but he left the museum in 1983 and post was vacant till 1984. In the year 1980 a special grant from Ministry of Culture was given to museum. The newly appointed Curator Mr. Dandwate renovated the Prehistory gallery and Protohistory gallery utilizing this grant. He prepared a plan and 1981 vertical wooden showcases with internal lighting arrangement were constructed in both these galleries. Old horizontal showcases were also in used with some modifications. In Protohistory gallery a diorama of Inamgaon depicting village life and agricultural life was also erected.


    Phase – III, 1983-1986

    In 1983 the building of Department of Archaeology was extended and three more galleries were added to the museum. The four scientific laboratories were also shifted to new building and one more gallery in the old building was given to museum where Early Historic gallery was shifted which is still there. The infrastructure and display work was started in 1984 onwards. Due to the extension of the building of Department of Archaeology four new galleries were added to the museum in 1983 but the infrastructure and display work was started in 1984 and was continued till 1993. In 1984 the Early Historic gallery was reorganized. Material was shifted from present Megalithic gallery to the hall vacated due to the shifting of four scientific laboratories in the newly built halls. In 1984 Dr. R.K. Mohanty was appointed as Museums Assistant. He served for eight years and left the museum in 1992 as he was selected as Research Assistant in the Institute. In 1984, the relief map of India which was lying on the floor of the Central hall was shifted in the Stone age gallery. It was fixed on one of the walls of the gallery. The map was very big and heavy, therefore iron clamps were used for fixing the map. In 1984- 85 Megalithic gallery was also reorganized. Big canvas painting was made and photo enlargements of different megalithic types and other photographs related to megalithic culture were mounted and displayed in this gallery along with write-ups, labels, maps etc. In 1985, Sculptures gallery was organized in one of the three halls added to the museum. For this gallery Curator Shri Dandwate made collection. He visited Varanasi and obtained some original stone sculptures from Ganga valley in exchange basis. He also visited National Museum, New Delhi, Mathura Museum and Gwalior Museum and purchased replicas of masterpieces of Indian art. Out of all these collection the gallery was created. In 1985 Prof. S.B. Deo retired as Director and Prof. M.K. Dhavalikar became the Director of the Institute. In 1986, Medieval archaeology gallery was organized. Some original Maratha period paintings were displayed in this gallery. One hall was kept vacant for few years. In 1986 Shri Dandwate organized first temporary exhibition as curator at D.A.V. College, Solapur on the occasion of Maharashtra Itihas Parishad. Then onwards many exhibitions were organized at many places in India and even abroad.


    Phase- IV, 1987-1992

    In 1987-88, Departmental building was again extended and two more hall were made available to the museum. In 1991-92, three more galleries were organized, they are Numismatics & Epigraphy gallery, Science in Archaeology gallery and Ethno-Archaeology gallery. Majority of vertical showcases were used in all the three galleries, in addition panels with inbuilt glass cases, show cases with three side glass and display boards were also used. In 1990 when Prof. V.N. Misra became Director of the Institute, it was decided that the Central Hall be dedicated in memory of Prof. H.D. Sankalia. Accordingly Shri Dandwate prepared plan for the gallery. The central hall is hexagonal in shape, on the back wall the Nevasa section was already existed, on the four walls of either sides where wooden showcases with internal lighting arrangement were erected. Articles related with Prof. Sanakalia were displayed in these showcases like his degree certificates, his publications (articles & books), selected excavated material from some of his excavated sites, awards like padmabhushan and Nehru Fellowship and his personal belongings etc. A bust of Prof. Sankalia made of fiber glass and displayed on a wooden pedestal in the centre of the hall. 4 During this phase Prof. M.K. Dhavalikar retired in 1990 and Prof. V.N. Misra took over as Director of the Institute. Dr. R.K. Mohanty left the Museum in 1992 as he was selected as Research Assistant in the Institute.


    Phase –V, 1993- 2010

    During this particular phase the Museum was almost completed due to organization of new galleries and reorganization of existing galleries. Display work of the Central hall was completed in1993 and was renamed as “Prof. H.D. Sankalia memorial Gallery”. Prehistoric gallery was renamed as Stone Age gallery and Protohistoric gallery was renamed as Chalcolithic gallery. In 1993 Shri B.S. Gajul was appointed as Museum Assistant. He is a good Artist-Modeler and did many things; rearranged display of many showcases, repaired and retouched dioramas, organized many exhibitions other museum related work. An important event took place in 1998 and that was the first “One day workshop in Archeology and History for School Teachers” was organized on 10th December 1998, birth anniversary of Prof. H.D. Sankalia. Then onwards once in a year (in July) the museum started organizing this workshop. Till date 23 such workshops have been successfully organized. During this phase many exhibitions have also been organized at various places in India and even abroad. During this phase Prof. V.N. Misra retired in 2000 and Dr. S.N. Pathan, Director of Higher and Technical Education, Government of Maharashtra was given the charge of Director of Deccan College. In 2003 Prof. K. Paddayya, Joint Director of the Institute was appointed as Director and Dr. Pathan returned back as Director of Higher Education, Government of Maharashtra. Prof. Paddayya took interest in development of museum. He retired in 2008 and Prof. S.K. Bhatta from Sanskrit Dictionary department became Director and Prof. V.S. Shinde from Department of Archaeology became the Joint Director. Construction of new building for the Museum started in 2009, out of substantial grant given by the Government of Maharashtra. In 2010 Dr. Pramod Dandwate left the museum as Curator as he was appointed as Associate Professor in the Institute. During the time of Prof. Bhatta, construction work of new museum building was started out of a substantial grant was given by the Govt. of Maharashtra. Prof. Bhatta was retired in 2013 and Prof. V.S. Shinde took over as the Director (Vice Chancellor) of the Institute.


    Phase VI, 2011- Till Date

    This is very important phase of development of Archaeology Museum because NAAC Committee visited Deccan College second time in December 2014. A big project named as National Mission of Monuments and Antiquities (NMMA), sponsored by A.S.I. was started at Deccan College. Prof. V.S. Shinde became the first Vice Chancellor of the Deccan College, Deemed University in June 2013. Dr. Pramod Dandwate left the Museum as Curator as he was selected as Associate Professor in the Institute in December 2010. Shri Gajul was promoted as Curator of the Museum in 2011. Miss Nilam Dhapre was appointed as Museum Assistant in the Museum in March 2013. In 2015 entry tickets for Museum was started. 5 New building of the Museum is almost ready but for infrastructure more funds are demanded to the Government of Maharashtra. On the occasion of NAAC visit to Deccan College, the Archaeology Museum was renovated completed. Stone Age renamed as Prehistoric gallery. All the show cases were reorganized, one flex painting depicting life of stone age man was displayed. Chalcolithic gallery was also renamed as Protohistoric gallery, display was reorganized, diorama and model of Inamgaon excavation was retouched, two flex paintings depicting Harappan culture and information of Potter’s kiln were introduced in the gallery. In Megalithic gallery big photographs depicting types of megaliths were replaced by new photographs, horizontal showcases were modified. In Early Historic gallery a big flex painting depicting importance of this period and findings in various excavations was displayed. Sculpture gallery was renamed as “Art and Architecture gallery”. A big flex painting depicting various rock-cut and structural temples in India was displayed. The Medieval Archaeology gallery was reduced from Museum and was in use as class room. Epigraphy & Numismatics gallery and Ethnoarchaeology galleries were also renovated. Science in Archaeology gallery was reduced from the Museum and given to Indian Navy, they organized a gallery named “Maritime Museum and Library”. Due to the reduction of two galleries and used for other purposes, presently there are eight galleries, they are as follow :

    1.Prehistory Gallery

    The Department of Archaeology has been carrying out explorations in different parts of the country to locate new archaeological sites. Large parts of Maharashtra, Madhya-Pradesh, Gujarat, Karnataka, Andhra-Pradesh, Orissa, Rajasthan and Tamilnadu have been explored. The Department has also carried out excavations at various places i.e. Langhnaj, Bagor, Chirki-Nevasa, Bhimbetka, Hunsgi, Anagawadi, Bori and Morgaon etc. Large number of stone age tools and animal fossils and have been collected due to these explorations and excavations, all these are exhibited in several show cases in this gallery. Some material from other countries like Europe, South Africa, Australia, Palestine is also on display in this gallery. Different stages of stone age period like Paleolithic (lower, middle and upper), Mesolithic and Neolithic flourished between 2,00,000 to 2,000 B.P. Horizontal and vertical showcases exhibit the tools and fossils in this gallery supported by maps, charts, diagrams and line drawings. The gallery also displays a big relief map of India showing the various topographical features.

    2.Prof.H.D.Sankalia Memorial Gallery

    The gallery is named after Prof.Sankalia who is also known as father of Indian archaeology which depicts the contribution of Late Prof.Sankalia in Indian archaeology; his degree certificates, excavations, books, excavation reports, articles and awards etc. The gallery also houses an important exhibit the “Nevasa Section”, the replica of cultural sequence at Nevasa. It depicts the five cultural stages represented at Nevasa from the hunting-gathering stage of the Stone Age through Chalcolithic, Satavahana, Indo-Roman times to the Maratha-Muslim Period (c.4,00,000 years B.P. to the 17th Century C.E.). This scale model gives an idea of the importance of stratigraphy to the visitors.

    3.Protohistory Gallery

    Large number of Chalcolithic sites have been excavated by the Deccan College; Jorwe, Nevasa, Chandoli, Songaon, Inamgaon, Walki, Kayatha, Ahar, Balathal, Navadatoli and Kunthasi etc. Large number of Chalcolithic antiquities like pottery, stone objects, beads, terracotta objects, bone objects, human skeleton remains, 6 animal bones, copper objects like axes, chisels, bangles, rings fish hooks, beads etc. have been discovered and are on display in this gallery. In addition few antiquities, photographs, and drawings from Indus valley civilization are also on display in this gallery. An important and pride exhibit of this gallery is the original Potter’s kiln from Inamgaon of late Jorwe period (c.1,000 B.C.E.). A life size diorama of the social life of Chalcolithic village, Inamgon is also on display in this gallery.

    4.Megalithic Gallery

    Large number of Megalithic sites in Vidarbha region of Maharashtra have been excavated; Naikund, Mahurajhari, Borgaon, Khairwada, Bhagimohari, Hingna Raipur and Hirapur etc. Large number of copper and iron objects were discovered; horse ornaments, bowls with decorated lids, axes, hoes, chisels, horse bits, nail-pairers, few gold ornaments, pottery and stone objects. All these objects (except gold ornaments) are on display in this gallery. Large mounted photographs depicting different megalithic types in various parts of India are displayed on the walls of this gallery. One replica of stone circle type of megalith which is found in large scale in Vidarbha part of Maharashtra is displayed in this gallery. A replica of iron smelting furnace found in the excavation at Naikund dated to 600 B.C.E. is also on display in this gallery. The gallery also displays a big canvas painting depicting the social life of the Megalithic Vidarbh.

    5. Early History Gallery

    The Department has also been engaged in excavations of Early Historic sites; Maheshwar, Dwarka, Nasik, Nevasa, Kahali-Brahmapuri, Bhon, Paturda, Siddhapur, Chaul, Junnar and Shiur etc. The antiquities recovered from these sites are; pottery, beads, terracotta objects, coins, copper and iron objects, some of them are on display in this gallery. One big canvas painting explaining the importance of this period (4th Century to 9th Century C.E.) and cultural material of the period found in different sites during excavations is also displayed in this gallery. One of the pride collections of this gallery is beautiful handmade chaitya model of terracotta from Nevasa.

    6.Art and Architecture Gallery

    The sculptural art of India right from the Mauryan period (3rd century A.D.) to the Medieval period (14th century A.D.) is being depicted in this gallery. Few original sculptures from Ganga valley received from Banaras Hindu University (BHU), Varanasi, on exchange basis are on display in this gallery. There are some replicas of masterpieces of Indian art like Asokan lion capital, Sarnath the National symbol, Rampurva bull capital, Salbhanjika and Surasundari figures from Mathura, sculptural pieces of Gupta art and medieval period are exhibited in this gallery purchased from National Museum, New Delhi, State Museum, Mathura and GujariMahal Museum, Gwalior. A big flax depicting selected examples of Indian rock-cut cave art and structural temple architecture is also depicted which include; Sanchi, Udaigiri, Ellora, Mahabalipuram, Khajuraho and Odishan temples etc.

    7. Epigraphy and Numismatics Gallery

    The museum houses photographs and estampages of stone inscriptions from different places and a few copper plates. But the originals are not displayed only photographs of inscriptions and copper plates are on display. The coin collection of the Museum has been enriched by coins from archaeological excavations conducted by the Deccan College from Nevasa, Nasik etc. Photoenlargements of some of the coins and also some photographs of some of the masterpieces of Indian coinage are on display in this gallery.

    8. Ethnoarchaeology Gallery

    The Department is also engaged in studying the technology, material culture and economy of various tribal communities; Bastar in Madhya-Pradesh, Koraput in Orissa, Andhra-Pradesh, Gujrat and Rajasthan with a bearing on the understanding of the earlier hunter-gatherer and farming communities. The principle exhibits are; fishing traps & nets, animal & bird traps, storage bins, baskets etc., ritual objects of clay & metal, dress & ornaments, weapons and musical instruments etc.


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