Rezart Sallja, a collector from the village of Shalësi i Cërrikut, who has been gathering pieces of history for years

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The original story was published here.

Private collections are a phenomenon that has been particularly prevalent in recent years, and they play a special role in preserving and transmitting the values, culture, and history of a country.

Rezart is one of the collectors of old items. He lives in the village of Shala e Cerrikut, and alongside his job, he has established a museum. For over 20 years, he has been collecting and purchasing items from collectors and international markets that relate to the culture and tradition of the country, but not only that. In his collection, Rezart has ethnographic and archaeological evidence, old objects, and various coins.

Rezart Sallja

In Rezart's museum, there is old weaponry, carpentry, radios, various kitchenware, and everything he has managed to acquire through occasional purchases as well as excavations he conducted during his engagement. Most of the items, as he says, are Albanian.

His passion was born while he was engaged in restoration work. "The majority of the collection is gathered from Albanian regions, but I've also brought some from abroad. Mainly from San Marino, Bulgaria, Romania, and other countries," says Rezart.

Part of Rezart's collection
Source: https://elbasanion.al/

"My passion was born when I was engaged in restoration work in Italy because I found many items that I decided to collect. Over time, I started to expand the collection," he says.

Part of the ethnographic collection is special. Here you can find dubek (wooden dish), the oldest kitchen utensils, as well as other items with a history, such as the telephone of the former prefect of Tirana, Kazim Mulleti, or the first radio sets, the oldest irons, hand drills, which belong to the period when work was done manually, weaponry found during excavations, and many pieces of evidence of early civilization.

The telephone of the former prefect of Tirana, Kazim Mulleti
Source: https://elbasanion.al/

He says it's not a collection for profit, but rather his early passion. The goal is for generations not to forget. Rezart says there will come a time when these items will be lost, and the young will not have information about how their ancestors lived, and we are, he says, obligated to remind them. "I'm not doing this for profit, but out of passion. The time is coming when these items will be lost, and the youth will not have the opportunity to understand how our grandfathers and great-grandfathers lived," explains Rezart.

He buys items online, finds objects from various excavations on international markets, and fanatically preserves his collection, always expanding it.

He is not willing to sell or donate, but he can make his collection available to institutions to inform and raise awareness among younger generations.

Collection segments
Source: https://elbasanion.al/

At first, members of Rezart's family didn't support him, but they later began to appreciate his unique collection. A collection that gains value over time and is, in itself, a wealth for the identity, history, and culture of a country.

Author: Bardha Nergjonija

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