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The permanent exhibitions trace the social and political history of the Newry and Mourne area from the prehistoric period up to the early 21st century.

Using a combination of interpretative panels and artefacts, the exhibitions provide an overview of the history and the diverse range of objects relating to the development of the region.

Architectural features from the history of Bagenal’s Castle and the adjoining 19th-century warehouse have also been integrated into the museum exhibition layout.

Our exhibits are complemented by interactives which encourage visitors, young and old, to enjoy learning about the past.

The permanent exhibitions are spread throughout three galleries:

Gallery 1

Gallery 1

The displays interpret the features of the Castle and trace the development of the Newry and Mourne area from the first human settlers, through the medieval period, up to the end of the 16th century.

The importance of the medieval Cistercian abbey at Newry is highlighted along with the influence of the Bagenal family and local Gaelic lords, on the history of the area.

Gallery 2

Gallery 2

The displays focus on the expansion of Newry during the 17th - 19th centuries as an urban and commercial centre, including the rise of the merchant class in the town.

Exhibits explore the building of Newry Canal, the development of local and municipal government, the impact of the Great Famine, and the importance of the local railways.

Gallery 3

Gallery 3

The displays chart the influence of political and economic events on the history of the area and on the lives of local people in the 20th century.

Artefacts illustrate the impact of Irish Home Rule and Partition, two World Wars, social and economic challenges and The Troubles. A section of this gallery deals with farming, fishing and folklore.