About Us

In the heart of old Hyderabad, a fascinating collection of articles presented to the seventh Nizam of Hyderabad, Mir Osman Ali Khan, is put on public display. This was his wish as it tells so much about his times and about the achievements of the people of the State of Hyderabad. It also tells us a lot about the man himself.

His Exalted Highness The Nizam’s Museum, Hyderabad, is located in the stately Purani Haveli. Though not as opulent as Falaknuma Palace nor as sprawling as Chowmahalla Palace, Purani Haveli holds a special place for the Asaf Jahs, the last ruling dynasty of the Nizams of Hyderabad. Several Nizams were born and spent parts of their lives at the Purani Haveli.

Osmania University college of arts building silver model.

The origin of the Purani Haveli goes back to Mohammed Quli Qutb Shah, the founder of the city of Hyderabad. He belonged to the Qutub Shahi dynasty that ruled the Deccan before the Asaf Jahs. When planning the new city of Hyderabad, Mohammed Quli allotted the site where Purani Haveli now stands for the mansion of his Peshwa (Prime Minister), Mir Momin.

In 1777, Mir Nizam Ali Khan (1761-1803), the second Nizam, acquired the land from the descendant of Mir Momin to build a palace for his son, Sikander Jah. The palace came to be known as the heir apparent’s palace.

When Sikander Jah became the third Nizam in 1803, he moved out of Purani Haveli to Chowmahalla at Moti Gali near Charminar. Purani Haveli remained unoccupied for some time, lost its position of pre-eminence and came to be known as the old palace or Haveli Khadeem.

The palace regained importance during the time of Afzal-ud-Dowla, the fifth Nizam, who was born in the palace and resided there. But it was during the reign of Mir Mahbub Ali Khan, the Sixth Nizam, who was born and lived there most of his life, that the Purani Haveli reverberated with activity and stories that have become legends.

There are at present more than ten buildings in the Purani Haveli. The main building which accommodated the Nizam’s family is flanked by two long wings running parallel to each other. The wardrobe and the museum are located in one of these wings.