The Lahore Museum (Punjabi: لاہور میوزیم, Urdu: لاہور عجائب گھر), was originally established in 1865-66 on the site of the hall or building of the 1864 Punjab Exhibition and later shifted to its present site located on The Mall, Lahore, Punjab, Pakistan in 1894. Rudyard Kipling's father, John Lockwood Kipling, was one of the earliest and most famous curators of the museum. Over 250,000 visitors were registered in 2005. The current building of Lahore Museum was designed by the well-known architect Sir Ganga Ram. The Museum is the biggest museum of the country. A number of rooms have been under repair for a long time and others still show a rather old-fashioned and often rudimental display of objects, with Urdu captions only.
The Museum contains some fine specimens of Mughal and Sikh door-ways and wood-work and has a large collection of paintings dating back to the Mughal, Sikh and British periods. It includes a collection of musical instruments, ancient jewellery, textiles, pottery, and armory. There are important relics from the Indus Valley civilisation, Gandhara and Graeco-Bactrian periods as well as some Tibetan and Nepalese work on display. The museum has a number of Greco-Buddhistsculptures, Mughal and Pahari paintings on display.The Fasting Buddha from the Gandhara period is one of the most famous objects of the museum. The ceiling of the entrance hall features a large mural by renowned Pakistani artist Sadequain.
The Museum displays archaeological material from pre-historic times to the Hindu Shahi period. It has one of the largest collections of archaeology, history, arts, fine arts, applied arts,ethnology, and craft objects in Pakistan.It also has an extensive collection of Hellenistic and Mughal coins. A photo gallery is dedicated to the emerging of Pakistan as a state.
^Which later became the Tollinton Market after the completion of the new/present museum building, see "Murray's Handbook of the Punjab", pub. 1883. Mention also made in Peter Hopkirk, "Quest for Kim", London, 1996, pp.46-47 ISBN 0-7195-5560-4