The exhibition is organized in partnership with the National Museum of Ethnography and Natural History, the National Library, and the Museum of Romanian Literature. The exhibition aims to familiarize the public with the history of science in Bessarabia in the modern times. For the first time there were combined and exhibited the most important museum collections reflecting the works and daily activity of Bessarabian scientists (documents, books, photographs, personal things, awards, etc.) Having been organized for familiarization of cultural and scientific values kept in different collections, the exhibition also has some collateral objectives:
- making-up of estimative/evaluative inventory of the museum collections in the field of “the development of science” in Bessarabia in the 19th – early 20th centuries;
- reconstruction of some exhibition segments presenting the evidences of the place and role of science in the development of Bessarabian society.
Due to these 222 exhibits the visitors can discover a significant chapter in the history of the Bessarabian science in the modern times. The exhibition includes items which belonged to Alexandru Sturdza, Alexandru Hajdau, Costache Stamati, Alexis Nacu, Stefan Margela, Iacob Hancu, Bogdan P.Hasdeu, Polihronie Sircu, Alexander Yatsimirsky, Leon Casso, Arseny Stadnitsky, Zamfir Arbore, Ion Surucean, Axente Fruna. Being an expression of the creative power of several generation of the Bessarabians for more than a century, these valuable items (studies and research monographs, journals, annals of scientific societies, manuals) constitute an evidence of a great cultural raising in Bessarabia under the influence of Russian culture (after 1812). In a whole, the exhibits are an expression of a message through the works of high culture – the message of the resistance and victory of the Bessarabian Romanians in the time of the foreign domination.
Scientific life in Bessarabia in the first half of the 19th century is presented in the exhibition through the activity of some scientific societies which had their headquarters in Odessa (Bessarabia was the administrative authority of the Governor-General of New Russia):
- The Imperial Agricultural Society of South Russa (1828) (the Bessarabian A. Sturdza was one of its establishers and its vice-president between 1833 – 1847);
- The Odessa Society of History and Antiquities (1839). In the journal of this society there were published many works written in the first half of the 19th century by the Bessarabians: Alexander Sturdza, Costache Stamati, Alexis Nacu, Carol and Matei Cotruta, Ion Surucean and others.
In the exhibition there are used a series of works written by foreign authors during the 19th century. These works constitute an impressive part of scientific research carried out by the imperial order in and about Bessarabia (A. Egunov, L. Berg, A. Zashchuk, P. Batyushkov, etc.). Simultaneously, there are exhibited works of Bessarabian authors, which were written or published in St. Petersburg, Moscow, Odessa, Bucharest (Stefan Margela, Iacob Hancu, Polihronie Sircu, Alexander Yatsimirsky, Leon Casso, Arseny Stadnitsky, Zamfir Arbore, etc). By the end of the 19th century the historical investigations carried out by several generations of Bessarabians resulted in delineation of research priorities:
- Ion Surucean has laid the foundations of local epigraphy
- Ion Halippa is the founder of local archive studies
- A. Yatsivirsky and Polihronie Sircu are the founders of Bessarabian Slavic studies.
In the late 19th – early 20th centuries in Bessarabia there is a tendency of association in societies and scientific organizations. Their activities also are reflected in the exhibition:
- Scientific Commission for Archives from Bessarabia (1898)
- Historical and Archaeological Church Society (1904)
- Society of Naturalists (1904), an exemplary centre of high scientific and practical organization in the field of agricultural research. Its activity is directly related to the establishment an activity of the Zemstvo Museum (collection of documents, photographs, entomological and ornithological exhibits). The work of the society is in line with local tradition in the field: College of Horticulture (1842) was the first agricultural research centre in Bessarabia (N. Mogilyansky, N. Zubovsky, N. Dimo, M. Pautynsky, P. Ungureanu).
Finally, in the exhibition there are presented a series of publications from 1912, original scientific papers, which are a national treasure (albums, calendars, studies, etc.). On the walls of the exhibition room there are photographs of the universities from St. Petersburg, Sorbonne, and Odessa; statutes of the scientific societies; a gallery of portraits of scientists from Bessarabia.