FOLEGANDROS (ANO MERIA)
The Folklore Museum in Ano Meria will take you back in time. Hosted in one of the traditional haystacks of the 19th century, a typical country house, a well organized and autonomous agricultural and livestock unit. In this area you can see how this unit operated, and many other items that comprised the daily life of the local community till the mid of 20th century.
Includes a building complex house and stable with all the tools used in daily life. In the museum you will see the cistern which is built like a Mycenaean tomb, the well, the oven, the wine press, the threshing floor, the olive press, the laundry and the cellar, containing jars, vases, scarecrows and a lantern. Entering the lobby, the main reception area of the house, you have a feeling that at any moment the lady of the house would come to treat you sweets. Your attention will be attracted by photographs taken by the first photographer of Hermoupolis, one of the first sewing machines manufactured in Greece (which Queen Olga of Kiev is depicted) and the famous trunk of Crete Chandakas with pyrographies by hunting scenes, which inside of it clothes are kept dating from 1940 and before. The museum is a microcosm of the society and conserves unchanged the way of life then. Created after the brave efforts of Mr Markos Venios, chairman of the cultural association “Folegandros”.
The museum represents the lifestyle in an authentic rural unit (haystack) of past centuries. Located in Ano Meria and offers to future generations the knowledge of the origin and understanding of the living conditions. At the entrance there is a low wooden gate, a true copy of the old, while on the right is the oldest facility. The stone walls are without any synthetic material. Earthen floors, and roof covered by large slates which are hold by raw logs named “fidas” (Juniperus phoenicea). The largest of the three areas of the building, was used to house the residents up to the 19th century. Later, the second house was built opposite of the first one, where it was converted into a cellar where they kept the crops and tools. In the next room was the mill. On the eve of, on a cylindrical stone pedestal, is the “kylintras”, a manual driven mill, which crushed olives. The third room housed the wall oven. On the west side of the haystack is the newest family home with the cistern and the henhouse. Inside the stand the loom, utensils, living room and paved with white lace bedroom. In the middle of the courtyard stands a stone wine press. From the bottom of the pit the pressed grapes flowed at a lower level, which traces are still visible. On the north side of the complex the threshing floor of haystacks, the animal cottage and the tall circular stone wall which protected the lemon tree from the winds, are preserved intact.
The archetype house-museum in Ano Meria of Folegandros is the first to open in Greece with the idea of the open museum. It is open each year from 1/7-15/9 and between 17.00 to 20.00. It is managed by the cultural association “Folegandros”, whose president and director of the museum is Markos Venios, painter and restorer of fine arts. Every year from August, 1987 a full moon night is organized.
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