Museum work in our country has a unique background beginning from ancient times. Precious items and pieces of art related to very different times of our cultural history have been preserved in the palaces of Azerbaijan rulers, temples, and other structures. In the subsequent periods, a very signiﬁcant part of the exponents of historic and artistic value was collected in special collections. Besides, due to the geopolitical events taking place in the region historically, unique samples of Azerbaijan culture, science, and art stand among the permanent exponents of the world's well- known museums as art wonder having the highest aesthetic value.
As from the second half of XIX century, the rapid processes taking place in the socio-political and cultural life of thought in Azerbaijan gave impetus to organizing museum work in Azerbaijan and new types of museums began to be built in our country. One of such museums was founded by Jalil Mammadguluzadeh, a prominent enlightenment writer and editor-in-chief of the ﬁrst satirical journal in the East "Molla Nasraddin", in Nehram village school he worked himself. Pedagogical museum in Baku was created under the Administration of Public Schools in the beginning of XX century. In those years, closed type museum functioned under Baku branch of Russian Technical Society.
In the period of Azerbaijan Democratic Republic (1918-1920) as the ﬁrst democratic country in the east, "Istiglal" museum was established led by Mahammad Agaogly, a prominent art scientists and theorist in December 1919. Considerable works were also accomplished in the area of organizing Archeology Society and Ethnographic Museum.
On June 15, 1920, museum-excursion department was set up under Azerbaijan USSR National Education Commissariat and decision was made to found special education museum. In October of the same year this museum was given a state status and called State Museum of Azerbaijan SSR.
In 1924, there were three units set up under the State Museum – Historical and Ethnographic, Geological-mineralogical, Zoological Natural; in 1925, another unit called Art and in 1927, the unit called Theater were also included. In 20th, works were accomplished to create Revolution, Labor and Agriculture museums in Baku, historic-country study museums in Ganja, Nakhchivan, Shaki and Lankaran cities of the Republic. Based on the relevant units of State Museum of Azerbaijan SSR, Azerbaijan State Theater Museum was set up in Baku in 1934, the Azerbaijan State Museum of Art and Azerbaijan State Natural History Museum were founded in 1936. In the same year, State Museum of Azerbaijan SSR transformed into Azerbaijan History Museum.
In 1935, decision was made to establish Museum of the History of Religion and Atheism and in 1939, Nizami Museum in Baku on occasion of 800th anniversary of prominent Azerbaijani poet Nizami Ganjavi. The opening ceremony of the museum took place in May 1945. National Education Museum has been functioning in Baku since 1940.
In 1967, decision was made to open two art museums in Azerbaijan called Azerbaijan Carpet Museum and State Museum of Azerbaijan Musical Culture.
1970s are characterized as a period of scientiﬁc and cultural development in our republic and enrichment of the museum funds by huge investments allocated from the state budget in a period when our national leader Heydar Aliyev headed Azerbaijan.
Special decision was made regarding museum work at Heydar Aliyev's initiative in 1980. This decision made it possible to develop museum network and create museums with varying proﬁles.
It was namely in those years that memorial museums and in many provinces, historical-ethnographic museums were established dedicated to prominent people of science and culture such as U. Hajibayov, J.Jabbarly, S.Vurgun, A.Azimzade, J. Mammadguluzadeh, Bulbul, and Niyazi.
Visit by Ilham Aliyev of Museum Center on 18 March 2005, close familiarization with the problems faced by republican museums gave momentum to future wide - scale reconstruction works in this sphere. In the subsequent years, the President of the Republican gave a number of Orders directed to development of museum work. His instruction of March 6, 2007, "on improvement of work of museum in Azerbaijan" is a bright example of state care for protection of our national-cultural treasures, passing precious exponents and pieces of art preserved in museum funds onto future generations. Implementation of "The Special event plans on overhauling of the museums operating in the regions of Azerbaijan according to the modern standards and providing with the new equipment and necessary exhibits " as approved by Order 292 of May 22, 2009 gave strong impetus to development of museums in the republic making it possible to open up modern type new museums in Baku and most regions of our country, increasing number of audience, and developing tourism.
The ﬁrst lady of Azerbaijan, president of Heydar Aliyev Foundation, UNESCO and ISESCO goodwill ambassador, member of the parliament Mrs.. Mehriban Aliyeva must be speciﬁcally noted for her work of preserving our natural heritage and her multifarious, untiring work in promoting them. Unique Museum of Modern Art, Stone Chronicle Museum and other were opened at the initiative and support by Heydar Aliyev Foundation that may serve as an example for other museums in terms of organizing museum work in Baku city.
National Museum of History of Azerbaijan, Museum of Azerbaijan Literature after Nizami Ganjavi, National Art Museum of Azerbaijan, Azerbaijan National Carpet Museum, Azerbaijan State Theater Museum after J.Jabbarly, State Museum of Azerbaijan Musical Culture, Azerbaijan Independence Museum, Nakhchivan AR State History M u s e u m a n d S t a t e M u s e u m o f L i t e r a t u r e a f t e r J . Mammadguluzadeh are among the biggest museums of the Republic where unique cultural-material samples of Azerbaijan are preserved.
Heydar Aliyev museums functioning in the cities and provinces of our Republic dedicated to the great genius of our national leader were called Heydar Aliyev museums as from February 01, 2012. There are 60 Heydar Aliyev centers functioning in our country now. Apart from reﬂecting the great course of life and exceptional services before Azerbaijani nations of our national leader, it plays a signiﬁcant role in the cultural life of the people and in particular, young generation. There are e-libraries, computers, meeting halls, language courses, and applied art circles functioning in most of the centers.
There are more than 250 state and personal museums in our republic covering 219 different proﬁles in the system of the Ministry of Culture such as art, literature, history, historic-country state, battle glory, home museums.
There are good opportunities now to promote museum work in Azerbaijan to the world standards, construct new museum buildings, carry out capital repairs, strengthen material-
technical base of museum, apply modern information- communication technologies, and enhance quality of cultural- service works. Various works are being accomplished in this ﬁeld.