The Malta Postal Museum is situated in the centre of Valetta, on the Archbishop Street, near the Grandmaster’s Palace and Our Lady of Damascus Church. Opened in 2016, it attracts visitors with its fascinating exponents of postal relevance, which origin from different times beginning with the 16th century and till the present days. The contemporary minimalistic design of the Museum’s interior creates a specific contrast with the collection stored there, which only adds the place the unique air of antiquity and value.
Managed by the Malta Post, the Museum was established in a townhouse, built in 1947th by the project of the architect Giuseppe Cachia Caruana. Initially it was a three-storey building but when it passed to Malta Post in 2011 the fourth storey was built. The inauguration of the Museum was held by the President of Malta Marie Louise Coleiro Preca on 20th June 2016. A few days before the inauguration, on 17th June 2016, a special postmark was issued in Philatelic Bureau in Marsa.
The collection of the Museum stores various artifacts and documents related to the history of the Maltese post. For example, you will find there samples of all the postage stamps issued from 1860 to 2010. This collection is represented in a specific way, to show the role of postal services in the history of Malta. You will see there a wide range of postal equipment beginning with wafer seals and stamps and ending with uniforms and even a bicycle.
Among the “must see” exponents are the first Malta’s stamp called the Halfpenny Yellow, a letter signed by Lord Nelson, and a love letter written by an Italian Prisoner of War. His name was Alfonso Pleimes. During the WW I he was detained in Verdala Barracks. Missing his beloved, Mrs Caroline Pleimes, who lived in Egypt then, he wrote her very wonderful heart touching letters.
You should also pay attention to different kinds of letterboxes collected in the museum, namely pillar boxes and ordinary and small wall boxes. It would be interesting to know how Maltese people managed without boxes before they appeared in the 1960s. Except observing all these exponents you will also know a lot about those people who somehow participated in the development of the communication systems on Malta.
There are also two more galleries for temporary exhibitions in the Museum. The first exhibition, which took place there, performed works of Emvin Cremona, who is regarded as one of the best artists of Malta of the 20th century. Except being an artist he was also a stamp designer, who created stamps to commemorate important historic events. Thus, he created a series of stamps devoted to Malta's independence from Great Britain.
You can easily take your children with you – they will not be bored. There is a special section in the building where kids can have some fun, for example, playing the Children’s Treasure Hunt. They must also like playing with the museum mascot - a soft toy named Peppi il-Pustier, a postman in a uniform. Probably you will even want to buy one to take it with you. You will find Peppi for sale in a gift shop selling various amazing things in postal design.
Even if you are not a philatelist you will find plenty of interesting things to do in the Malta Postal Museum. There is hardly any other place in the world where you could see impressions book, behind-the-counter postal tools and, at the same time, know dozens of simple human stories which will definitely touch your heart.