ITS–The National Museum was the first museum built in Indonesia, strategically located in the center of Jakarta. Its Grecian style is embellished with six pillars painted in white. It is also called the Elephant Building because on its front yard there is a bronze statue of an elephant, a memento from the King of Siam, Chulalangkorn, who visited Jakarta in 1871.
The people of Betawi used to nickname it “the date building” because it was a popular location for young people to meet because of its peaceful ambience. The museum was built by JCM Radermacher, the founder of the Batavia Society for Arts and Knowledge, and Governor General Reyner de Klerk, on April 24th, 1778. It was opened in 1868.
The Indonesian authorities renamed it the National Museum in 1947. The museum has a rich collection of no less than 85,000 items. The collection includes relics from pre-historic times, works from various periods of Indonesia history, ceramics from many Chinese dynasties, old coins, statues, and old records.