APRIMITIVEPLACE – Kambang Putih Museum, a cultural gem in Tuban Regency, East Java, offers its visitors a journey through time to a rich historical past. The name “Kambang Putih” itself is engraved in a inscription dating back to 1050 AD, carved by King Sri Mapanji Garasakan, the founder of the Janggala Kingdom.
The inscription mentions Kambang Putih as a port city in its time and a center for trade between islands and even continents in the 11th century.
Kambang Putih itself was part of the territory of the Panjalu Kingdom, which later merged with the Janggala Kingdom. Its history records an event when Kambang Putih attacked the Palace of the Janggala Kingdom, yet it received praise as a “port city” in King Sri Mapanji Garasakan’s inscription.
The origin of the name Kambang Putih also has an intriguing story; in the past, the area looked like a floating mound of white sand in the ocean, as narrated by Chinese immigrants who observed the region from afar.
Kambang Putih Museum, as the only museum-type tourist attraction in Tuban, captivates attention with its historical collections. Despite having only one floor with an area of about 150 m2, the museum has gathered an impressive 5,774 items in its collection as of August 2021.
Among its collections are historical artifacts, such as tapes and photos documenting the history of the legendary Indonesian band, Koes Plus Bersaudara, originating from Tuban.
The museum’s main collection comes from maritime equipment obtained through diving, especially from Boom Beach. This beach was once the largest international-scale port in the past, storing artifacts and maritime equipment from various countries.
Additionally, the museum also displays fossils of ancient rhinoceroses that are over 300,000 years old, found in the Jenu District, Tuban Regency.
Ancient sculptures, some incomplete, also add to the allure of the Kambang Putih Museum. Among these sculptures is the Nandi sculpture, a bull that, in Hindu mythology, serves as the vehicle of Lord Shiva.
The presence of the Nandi sculpture in a temple signifies that the temple is a place of worship in the Hindu Shiva sect.
The museum also showcases Lingga and Yoni artifacts, which, in Hindu mythology, symbolize the transformation of males and females. Lingga, resembling the male reproductive organ, and Yoni, resembling the female reproductive organ, are seen as symbols of Lord Shiva.
Visitors can also witness a collection of old currency from the 19th to 20th centuries, including coins and paper money, as well as traditional fishing equipment such as oars, nets, fish storage containers, and a pair of wooden sandals.
Interestingly, the museum also displays Onkek, a part of Tuban’s cultural heritage that is now rare to find. Onkek is used to contain Legen, a traditional drink unique to Tuban.
Kambang Putih Museum, with all its historical and cultural wealth, serves not only as an informative tourist destination but also as a window that opens insights into Tuban Regency’s long journey in weaving its history. A journey through this museum provides a rare opportunity to delve deeper into the cultural roots and history that shape the identity of this region.