True. There isn’t much to see in Gori itself, but there is something unique to Gori that I won’t find anywhere else in the world – the Joseph Stalin Museum. Yes, Gori was the birthplace of Joseph Stalin, and many people don’t know he was Georgian. Seen as a terrible monster by some and a hero bt others, he is definitely one of the most fascinating figures in world history.
Joseph Stalin Museum
The Joseph Stalin Museum is located in a large building at one end of a park named after Stalin. When I arrived, it looked closed, but a guard motioned for me to enter. At the ticket booth, I was given an option of a ticket just to see the museum, or a combo ticket including Stalin’s personal rail carriage and birth house. I got the combo.
A docent led me upstairs and turned on all the lights in the exhibit. It was fascinating. There were two very large halls dedicated to the life of Stalin from his birth to his death, with photographs, newspaper clippings, and memorabilia. All of it was in Georgian and Russian with enough in English to get the gist of everything.
One of the last rooms was dedicated solely to Stalin’s death mask. The last corridor was full of cases of gifts from other countries to Stalin, the USSR, and the museum.
Once I finished those sections of the museum, the docent led me into a room full of Stalin’s personal office furniture from the Kremlin. There was also a case with his clothes and uniform.
Stalin’s Birth Home
She then took me outside where I was shown the Stalin statue followed by his birth home. It was a very small house protected by a columned structure.
On one side of the house lived the family of Joseph Stalin. It’s hard to imagine that one of the most powerful men in history was born in such a tiny room.
Stalin’s Personal Rail Carriage
Finally, I was shown Stalin’s personal rail carriage. It took him to several important conferences, including Yalta. It didn’t look very comfortable and wasn’t as luxurious as I had imagined.