Tullio Ilomets ja Akadeemilise Muinsuskaitse Seltsi vilistlasklubi

Tullio Ilomets and the Graduates' Club of the Academic Heritage Society (AMS)

  • Matti Laan Member of the AMS Graduates’ Club


An important part of Tullio Ilomets’ comprehensive activities was
the collection, preservation and systematisation of the heritage of the
University of Tartu. The information communicated here is based on
previously published articles, archival documents and my personal
Already six decades ago, Tullio Ilomets, together with like-minded
people, began collecting items that were interesting and important
from a scientific and historical point of view. It was Tullio’s persistence that led Rector Fjodor Klement to allocate rooms in the main
building of the university for the storage of artifacts. In 1976, Rector
Arnold Koop signed the decree establishing the university’s history
museum. Today we can say, as Rector Jaak Aaviksoo did in 2000:
“There are not many universities that can have such a university
history museum.”
In the late 1980s, the heritage movement played an important
role in the awakening of the Estonian society. In September 1987, the
founding meeting of the Academic Heritage Society (AMS) was held
at the University of Tartu. Tullio was the vice-chairman of the society.
For a number of reasons, the student body of the AMS quickly faded
away, and it became necessary to establish a new AMS to protect the
heritage of the university. It was found that the core of this new AMS
could be formed by university alumni, hence our name – the AMS
Graduates’ Club. Nowadays, our club is the only part of the AMS that
still exists, i.e., our club is the AMS.
The founding meeting of the club took place on 11 January 1989.
The participants represented twenty different academic specialties,
which was and continues to be the strength of our club. Our first and
only president was Tullio Ilomets.
The areas of work that received the most attention varied; the
most important tangible activities of the club have been working on
objects related to heritage protection (buildings, cemeteries, etc); collection of memories; providing information related to heritage protection and public appeals; lectures; and excursions to learn about
cultural monuments; the Club’s social activities.
Memory collection was mostly aimed at people related to the university. This work was mainly carried out by Ille Palm; a number
of her recordings have been used in six books. We should especially
emphasise efforts to make available to the public the voluminous memoir material of Professor of Medicine Herbert Normann.
As far as possible, everyone has contributed to the club’s various
events, but both directly and indirectly, the tandem Ille Palm/Tullio
Ilomets has been our engine. Without their contribution, the continued existence of the club to this day would be questionable.


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