When you hear the word museum, what comes to your mind? Depending on the museums that you have had the privilege of visiting, a museum to you might be a building where you can find anything from historical objects, to cultural artefacts, scientific inventions, or any form of art in storage or on display. Therefore, you know it is possible to find a museum displaying the weirdest things that you could think of, right? Not quite. The truth is that your imagination of what a museum should have on display might be very limiting, because there are numerous museums around the world displaying things that you would never think you could find in a museum.
The different types of museums on this list include public museums run by various governments, which remain open through working hours, as well as private museums owned by individuals who open them at their convenience. Collecting the materials to display in a museum is one of the hardest things to do, but maintaining the place does not require much effort, though the items you place on display will have a huge part to play in determining the workload. The museums that attract the highest number of visitors are those dealing in things that will arouse the curiosity of the masses.
There are museums dedicated to particular objects or concepts that will totally blow your mind while others will leave you wondering what the people who started the museum were thinking. Here are ten things you will not believe have a museum dedicated to them:
10 Hair: Leila's Hair Museum
You might be wondering who ever thought of dedicating a museum to hair because a museum dedicated to hair does not sound interesting at all, right? Well, that thought might change after you have made your way to Leila's Hair Museum, located in Independence, Missouri. There are very few other museums dedicated to hair, if any, and this one not only holds the largest collection of wreaths and hair jewellery pieces, but it is the Victorian Hairwork Society's headquarters. Some of the exhibits here on display include hair pieces from Queen Victoria, celebrities such as Marilyn Monroe and Michael Jackson, and even hair from four American presidents.
9 Vampires: Le Musée de Vampires et Monstres de l'lmaginaire in Paris
Are you a fan of vampires? If you are, then you need to book a visit to Le Musée de Vampires et Monstres de l'lmaginaire in Paris. This museum is dedicated to vampires and other legendary creatures. A very creepy place where you will not only learn a lot about vampires, but also realize just how afraid you are of them.
Although you need a reservation to visit the museum, inside you will walk across what looks like a cemetery, you will see bats, creepy texts, human remains, mysterious relics and of course the vampires that are the main attraction. This museum came to be thanks to the dedicated work of Jacques Sirgent, who was a scholar and a macabre specialist.
8 Torture: The Medieval Torture Museum in San Gimignano, Italy
Unlike today where torturing an individual is against the law, in the olden times torturing was a central part of the justice system. The Medieval Torture Museum in San Gimignano, Italy is a place where you will explore the many horrifying, sadistic, pain-inducing equipment that people used against other people. As sad as it is to walk through the museum knowing that some poor and innocent human beings were taken through the horrifying experiences, you will get to know first-hand that human beings can really become darker than even the wild beasts. Although the torture equipment is not in the museum as a way of celebrating them, it is there as a sign of a past we are not so proud of.
7 Burgers: Harry Sperl's Burger Museum
Just when you thought that museums were supposed to be dedicated to serious historical artefacts and archaeological findings, you come across a burger museum. Who would even think of setting up a museum where all you would see are burgers? Harry Sperl is a German living in the United States, who absolutely loves burgers. He has a collection of over a thousand burger-related items, including a very interesting looking burger motorcycle and a burger waterbed. Harry has collected burger-related items for close to 10 years, and he transforms his home into a burger museum once every year as he prepares to construct a building-sized burger museum that would be open to the public year-round.
6 Male Genitalia: The Icelandic Phallological Museum in Reykjavik, Iceland
Yes, you read it right, there is a museum dedicated to penises and penile parts. The Icelandic Phallological Museum in Reykjavik, Iceland has a display of well over 215 pieces of male genitalia, which belong to different mammals. Just before you think that the museum is out promoting indecency and inappropriateness that is not allowed in society, it is important to realize that the museum is established under the field of science called Phallology. The museum is host to specimens ranging from sea mammals, land mammals, and even samples from a few homo sapiens. Also, there is a special category of organs belonging to trolls and elves, and since these creatures are invisible, so are their genitals.
5 Funerals: The National Museum of Funeral History in Houston, Texas
You will most likely be surprised to learn that the funeral museum we will talk about here is not a cemetery, but a museum set aside for funerals and their history. The National Museum of Funeral History in Houston is a museum that some people have defined as morbid, because death is surrounded by so much mystery, pain, and loss that even thinking too much about it is considered inappropriate. However, the above museum is dedicated to funeral artefacts that have been used over the years, together with the different burial methods and embalming processes that different people have used on their loved ones through history. This museum might even help people to open up to the idea of death being a part of life because everyone will go down that road someday.
4 Medical Abnormalities: Musee Dupuytren in Paris, France
Without a doubt, the equipment and the steps it took for the world to get to the level of medical advancements it has gotten to should be preserved in a museum, where future generations can discover just how far we have come. Surprisingly enough, there is a museum for the exact opposite, medical abnormalities, and it is the Musee Dupuytren in Paris, France. The museum displays real-life examples of the medical abnormalities that have occurred over time with many, if not all of them, appearing to be quite disturbing. Some of the exhibits here include malformed and diseased foetuses, human organs, and skeletons; there are thousands of deformed body parts, babies born with exposed organs, conjoined twins, models of frightening birth defects and diseases. A visit to this museum requires courage and a strong stomach.
3 Cockroaches: The Cockroach Hall of Fame and Museum in Plano, Texas
Is your first instinct at the sight of a cockroach to jump up on your couch screaming like a little girl, to pick up your slipper and squash it, or to look at it and smile at how cute it is? The third option might be a bit weird, but that is exactly what you will do when you make your way to the Cockroach Hall of Fame and Museum in Plano, Texas. This museum, and others like it, is probably the only place where cockroaches are celebrated, because most people usually think that cockroaches are nothing more than creepy little critters that deserve a date with the exterminator. The cockroach museum features cockroaches on display dressed up as celebrities and historical figures, and guests are even treated to dry roach larvae for snacks.
2 Broken Relationships: The Museum of Broken Relationships in Croatia
A trip to the museum is supposed to be magical for a couple in love, especially because they get to hold hands as the walk along the corridors while talking about the exhibits, and end up falling deeper in love with each other in the process. The above is the case until the day your partner takes you to The Museum of Broken Relationships in Croatia, then all sorts of questions will start running through your mind.
This museum won the Kenneth Hudson Award in 2011 for being the most innovative museum in Europe, thanks to its concept of focussing on failed relationships. The museum is host to numerous personal objects that lovers left behind after a breakup, a concept that is unique and very interesting.
1 Snoring: Museum of Snoring in Alfred, Germany
Yes, there is a museum dedicated to snoring, despite how annoying we all know snoring is. This Museum of Snoring located in the town of Alfred in Germany has a very interesting collection of modern-day and vintage equipment that people used and continue to use in order to aid people suffering from sleep Apnea.
Sleep Apnea is a condition where an individual's normal breathing starts and stops repeatedly, and a common symptom of this is usually loud snoring. Since people have been trying for a very long time to get rid of snoring, the gadgets you will come across in the museum are nothing short of interesting. A sleep researcher and therapist called Joseph Alexander Wirth is responsible for collecting the snoring equipment.