One of the most luxurious mansions of the 19 century, which once belonged to I. D. Astashov, a gold producer of Tomsk, is near the City Hall on Lenin Avenue. This Empire-style house was built in 1838.
After the October Revolution of 1917 the house of Astashov was given to the Local History Museum of Tomsk. It was opened on May, 18 1922. During 1979-1983 Tomsk regional fine arts museum was created on the base of the expositions of the local history museum. And in 1980 the organ was installed in one of the exhibition halls of the museum and it was turned into a concert hall.
Several permanent and temporary expositions of the local history museum are on the two floors of the large mansion: «The Rush for Gold», «The Great Tea Route», «The storm of 1812», «The willed and unwilled Siberians», «Tomsk-Narym Golgotha».
By the items of the permanent expositions one can trace the history of the Tomsk land starting from the Bronze Age. There one can see the archaeological findings from the ancient man sites in the Tomsk region, the ethnographic collections of the native peoples of Siberia, the collections of ancient manuscripts. As to the modern exhibits, one can see the collections of furniture, ceramics and many other things.