Galway City Museum reopened on 16th April 2007 with the launch of its permanent exhibition. Among the highlights on show is a rare 17th century altar piece, the new location of the statue of Pádraic Ó’Connaire and the Galway City hooker boat, named ‘Máirtín Oliver’ by the general public. Other highlights include the Galway Civic Sword and Great Mace. The Civic Sword dates from the time of the Charter of King James I. The Great Mace, a massive piece of ornamental silverwork, was made in Dublin in 1710, and was presented to the town by Edward Eyre, Mayor of Galway, in 1712.
The ground floor of the Museum houses a fascinating collection of artefacts dating back to Prehistoric and Medieval times, while the first and second floors host exhibitions reflecting the history, stories and experiences of the people of Galway. The galleries host a series of temporary exhibitions throughout the year. New exhibitions include prehistoric and medieval Galway, Padraic Ó’Conaire – the man and the statue, Lamb in Connemara (paintings by Charles Lamb), dancehall days, cinema in alway, the Arts in Galway, and modern languages (craft exhibition).