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08 December 2021
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The museum and its house

The National Museum of Costume occupies the Angeja-Palmela Palace, named after the two families who owned the property.
It owes its present plan to the 3rd Marquis of Angeja who was responsible for planning to house in this palace his natural history collection, complemented by a botanic garden. The project of redevelopment of the already existing mansion was partially carried out, but the installation of a natural history museum did not happen, although it left some architectural vestiges, such as the buildings which are now the restaurant and the green house.

Acquired by the Palmela Family in the second quarter of the XIX century, it continues to be used as a secondary residence and was the object of internal upgrading works developed by Pereira Cão, Rambois and Cinatti, who intervened in the wall decoration of the first floor. Initially a summer residence, it was from 1952 to 1955 the residence of Colonel Lawrence Vincent More Cosgrove, Canadian Chargé d’Affaires in Portugal during that period. The same colonel who signed, on the 2nd of September 1945 representing Canada, the Japan Act of Rendition, on board the USS Missouri. The palace was subsequently the owners’ residence.

Since 1973 the creation of a National Museum of Costume was being contemplated and there was an effort made to find appropriate premises. Negotiations were started to acquire the Angeja-Palmela Palace, already vacated by the family of the owners. The latter, fearing the occupations that occurred after the 25th of April 1974, suggested that the settling of the future Museum on the premises should begin, which happened in May 1974, occasioning an interesting episode with the occupiers of a neighbouring property.

In 1975, the Portuguese State purchased a set of buildings in a property known as Quinta do Monteiro-Mor for the installation of the National Museum of Costume.

Angeja-Palmela Chapel
  • The Palace’s chapel is dedicated to Saint Rita. It has an altar with a tabernacle in carved gilded wood. On the sides of the altar are the images of Saint Anthony and Saint Francis Xavier.

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