The establishment of the Freedom Fight Museum began in 1992 following the initiative of exiles, partisans, political prisoners, and their families. An exposition was set up in a house which housed the State Security Lazdijai headquarters (KGB) during post-war years.
In the beginning the museum operated on a public basis and occupied a single room. It contained exhibitions of pictures of exiles, political prisoners, and partisans, as well as other personal belongings, gifted by residents of Lazdijai region or people otherwise related to our land. The museum lived on and expanded with the efforts of political prisoners, exiles, participants of the Sąjūdis, as well as their families.
On 4 March 1994 the museum was opened as the Freedom Fight Museum “Kraujo Takais” (“On Paths of Blood”) of Lazdijai Region Municipality Administration Department of Culture.
As of 2004 the name of the museum was changed to “Laisvės Kovų Muziejus” (“Freedom Fight Museum”) and became a branch of Lazdijai Region Museum. The Freedom Fight Museum currently holds three expositions.
The first exposition reflects Freedom Fights in Dainava district, Šarūnas’s squad during the years of the second Soviet occupation. It contains an innovative exposition on the Kalniškės Battle, Lazdijai region fighters, and the locations of the commemoration of their remembrance. Historic material, documents, photographs, and books collected on the legendary Lithuanian partisan leader Adolfas Ramanauskas-Vanagas, who lived and studied in Lazdijai region, bespeaking his heroic sacrifice in the name of Lithuania, are also exhibited in this hall.
The premises depicting exiles’ mode of life contain the items used by exiles (most of them created with their own hands), as well as documents, photographs, memoirs, audio and video material.
The exposition “Lazdijiečiai Sąjūdyje Ir Baltijos Kelyje” (“Residents of Lazdijai in the Sąjūdis and the Baltic Way”) tells about the events of the Rebirth and the restoration of Lithuania’s independence. Lazdijai border guard squad gifts to the museum such as remembrance medals, souvenirs, and acknowledgements receive attention from the majority of visitors.
Events. Historical memory events, exhibitions, conferences, unconventional history and public spirit lessons are held in the Freedom Fight Museum. People from public organisations, such as members of the Lazdijai branch of the Lithuanian Political Prisoners’ and Exiles’ Union (LPKTS), riflemen of A Ramanauskas-Vanagas 4th Riflemen’s Division, young riflemen, and freedom fight song ensemble “Žilvitis”.
The museum holds educational activities on the topics of partisan fights and the history of exile.
The “Mums Laisvę Byloja Dzūkijos Šilai” (“Pinewoods of Dzūkija Speak of Freedom”) educational lesson uses the memoirs written by the remaining surviving partisans and other visual material to introduce the story of one of the first and largest battles in Lithuania – the Kalniškės battle. The “Amžinai Gyvi” (“Forever Alive”) educational programme is held from September until June. It deepens the existing knowledge and provides new insight into the partisan resistance in Lithuania. The review and discussion of “Partizaninis Karas Lietuvoje (1943-1953 m.)” (“Partisan War in Lithuania (1943-1953)”) is held.
During the “Lietuvos Šalelėj” (“In the Land of Lithuania”) workshop, participants of early school age become acquainted with the history of the restoration of the Lithuanian State, state symbols, and the meanings behind them.
The “Tremtinuko Kalėdos” (“Little Exile’s Christmas”) programme gets children of early school age acquainted with the way Lithuanians used to celebrate Christmas while in exile and how it is celebrated nowadays.
The “Žaislai Tremtyje” (“Toys in Exile”) educational workshop gets children acquainted with toys brought back by Lithuanians from Siberia, which their children played with.
Participants of the “Tremty Sušaldyta Vaikystė” (“Childhood Frozen in Exile”) educational programme become acquainted with the repressions carried out by the occupying authority, difficult living, household, and job conditions of political prisoners and exiles, as well as their efforts to preserve their nation’s customs, language, and historic self-consciousness.
Information for visitors.
Participating in educational programmes and visiting the museum is free of charge.
Educational programme and excursion bookings as well as consultations can be made by using the contact information below: