Incalculable Loss as Rio de Janeiro’s 200-year-old National Museum is Gutted by a Huge Fire

This has nothing to do with genealogy. However, it does serve as a reminder that any collection, even a genealogy archive, is fragile and could disappear at any time.

Brazil’s Museu Nacional housed artifacts from Egypt, Greco-Roman art, and some of the first fossils found in Brazil. Yesterday, the museum was almost totally destroyed by fire and much of its archive of 20 million items is believed to have been destroyed.

There were no reports of injuries, but the loss to Brazilian science, history and culture was incalculable, two of its vice-directors said.

Brazil’s president, Michel Temer, called the losses “incalculable”. “Today is a tragic day for the museology of our country,” he tweeted. “Two hundred years of work research and knowledge were lost.”

You can read more in an article in The Guardian at:


I saw this live last night, such a horrible cultural tragedy.
Another reminder that all paper and physical items of historical and personal importance must be photographed/scanned and saved on servers in different locations, so there is at least some record of them left in case of a disaster such as this.

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Historical manuscripts were destroyed, per BBC source. No idea as to exact nature of these manuscripts.


Devastating loss. Reports indicate very litlle of the contents of the building was able to be saved. They’re expecting everything was totally destroyed.


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