The Museum of Sevastopol Defense, as it was called before, created on the initiative of the participants of the defense of 1854-1855, initially was situated in the house of general-adjutant E.I.Totleben, which was opposite the modern building of the museum (it hasn’t remained). In its five rooms the exposition opened in September 14, 1869 on the initiative of the participants of the heroic defense of Sevastopol in 1854-1855 was housed. The museum was given personal items, photographs, documents, manuscripts of memoirs of the participants of the Sevastopol defense, collections of firearms and cold steel, engravings, paintings by I.K.Ayvazovskiy, F.A.Rubo, V.Y.Makovskiy, famous life sketches by V.Timm.
By the 25th anniversary of the Museum, in 1895, a special building was built for it by the design of architect A.M.Kochetov. All stucco and cast-iron decorations were made by the sculptor from Odessa B.V.Eduards. On the facades there were lion muzzles (masks), cast-iron rostra (booms) – symbols of the naval power, with military attributes, lanterns, columns with palm branches – symbols of glory. In the yard of the museum there is an outdoor exposition of the military technology.
Till 1940 the museum went through a number of different changes and movements and became the Military-Historic Museum of the Black Sea Fleet. In 130 years of its existence its collection has enriched significantly. Seven halls of the museum are dedicated to different stages of the development and life of the fleet, where a unique collection of old and modern arms, models of ships, military uniforms, works of battle painting and old photographs is kept.
Now it counts over 30 thousand exhibits.