The largest and the oldest museum of the Republic of Komi was founded on the 17th of October 1911 on the basis of a collection of objects of ethnography, archaeology, paleontology and a small library. Its founder and the first director was À.À. Tsember, ethnographer, teacher and historian.
In 1920's the museum's work was closely connected to the activity of the Society for the study of the Komi territory. Owing to the scientists D.T. Yanovich, V.P. Nalimov, À. Gren, À.S. Sidorov and others there was formed a Collection on the culture of Komi-zyryan. On the 29th of October 1940 the Regional museum of regional studies (since 1923) was reformed into the Republican museum of regional studies. Since 1994 the National Museum of the Komi Republic is the main republican museum establishment, which functions as methodical and cultural and educational centre.
The only in the Republic collection of tangible, written and graphic evidences is at the disposal of the museum. It covers a considerable layer of the history of region: beginning with the first Paleolithic archaeological sites (28-30 thousand years B.C.), and finishing with the sources of the political and social and economic history of the beginning of XXI century. Over the period of almost century-old history of the museum there was formed a collection of more than 250 thousand storage units that include unique icon paintings of XVI-XX cc., numismatics collection (I thousand B.C. - II thousand A.D.), collection of things and objects of material and spiritual culture of Komi people, natural-science collections, the richest photo and documentary archive, collections of everyday life things and objects that belonged to all sections of the population of the region of different chronological periods, archives and collections of outstanding political and public figures, and creative intelligence of the Republic. The Museum's collection is the foundation for historical, ethnographical, archeological, natural-science, linguistic and culturological research.
The museum consists of the following departments: storerooms, the department of history, the department of nature, the department of ethnography, the Literary Museum devoted to I.A. Kuratov, I.P. Morozov's house museum.
The museum has its permanent exhibitions: the department of history - "Komi territory from ancient times till the middle of the ÕÕth century", the department of ethnography - " Komi People Traditional Culture in Life Cycle Rituals (the end of XIX - beginning of XX century) ", the Literary Museum devoted to I.A. Kuratov - "Life and work of Ivan Kuratov. History of the poetic heritage: revelation and study ", I.P. Morozov's house museum - "Morozov I.P. - destiny of a man in the history of the republic", and permanent exhibition in the department of nature - "Natural recourses of the Republic of Komi"