The new Computer Museum NAM-IP opened in Namur on 27th October last year, with the mission to promote four pioneering collections entrusted to the King Baudouin Foundation, namely:
- the collection of the Unisys Computer Museum Belgium, Brussels, assembled by Jacques Laffut;
- the collection of the former Bull Museum, Grimbergen, donated by Bull, thanks to intermediary Gilbert Nathan;
- Jacques Lemaire’s (Wezembeek-Oppem) collection of various types of calculators, donated by his wife Bernadette Lemaire-Faure;
- and the Maredsous Computing and Bible collection started by Ferdinand Poswick and Yolande Juste.
In 2013, the Pioneering Computing in Belgium Fund was established within the King Baudouin Foundation with a view to preserving computing-related collections that were in danger of disappearing and also to perpetuate the memory of the beginnings or computing in Belgium.
The NAM-IP Museum (Numerical Artefacts Museum – Informatique pionnière en Belgique) now presents these four collections of pioneering computing in Belgium in Salzinnes. Each of the collections highlights a particular aspect of the history of computing and its impact on society.
Among the objects is the Bull computer used for the first Bancontact machine in Belgium, a vast collection of manual calculators, from slide rules to mechanical and electronic machines from the Jacques Lemaire Collection, the fascinating Computing and Bible Collection and the 1897 Hollerith tabulator, listed by the Federation Brussels-Wallonia.
A historical timeline traces the history of computing, as well as pointing out Belgian contributions in the field.
The museum is open from Tuesday to Friday, from 10h to 16h, throughout the year, and between April and October, is also open the first Saturday of the month from 10h to 17h.
Guided visits are available on reservation for an individual, group or school visit.