The main building of the Museu Militar do Porto (Porto Military Museum) was designed in the 19th century for family housing. But, between 1936 and 1974, during the Portuguese fascist regime, it was used as headquarters of the secret information police. Police actions had severe consequences for the people of Porto. The building’s adaptation to host the Military Museum was developed in 1977, and the museum opened to the public in 1980. Its mission is to preserve and disseminate the city’s historical military heritage; among its collections, an interesting set of miniature soldiers stands out, as well as diversified equipment, examples of heavy and light artillery, and uniforms. The collections range from the 16th to the 20th centuries.
Military history of the city has its most significant moment in the 19th century, during the Siege of Porto, led by the army of those supporting the maintenance of the absolute power of the king, against the liberal party.