Brief history of the Botijo Museum.
It started like these things start. "My mother-in-law had a very beautiful jug, made of cork and metal," Pablo Castelo remembers, "which came into my hands as a gift. I placed it in a prominent place, but when I looked at it it made me sad to see it alone. So I decided to have a few more. Little by little, almost without realizing it, I managed to collect a hundred and from there I became convinced of one thing: collecting botijos is expensive but exciting."
The above happened in the year 70. With the fever of collecting jugs from all corners of the world, Pablo Castelo, his children and of course all his friends, imposed themselves the obligation of getting Villena a museum that was exemplary, of which they could show off like a second treasure.
In the Botijo Museum there are two floors dedicated to collecting the twelve hundred specimens that are currently exhibited. They are classified by country and the national ones, by areas and regions. Pablo Castelo has traveled through Russia, Argentina, Colombia, Mexico, Chile, Paraguay, Peru, Morocco, France, Greece, Portugal, Italy and Istanbul (Turkey) looking for rare specimens. His search is filled with hundreds of anecdotes: "One day a religious man from a Carmelite school in Santiago de Chile knocked on my door. He had a jug and a message in his hand. 'A neighbor from Villena gave it to me so that I could bring it,' were his words." One of the smallest jugs in the collection arrived from Mexico. "The pilot commander of Aeroméxico visited my museum. At the end of the visit we went to Villenense to have a bottle of tequila. With the second bottle, the pilot promised me that he would make a next trip and bring me a copy. Many months passed until he "I heard from you again. Another Aeroméxico pilot came to my house one day and gave me a small package. He told me: be careful, inside there is a jug that my partner gave me in Mexico so I can bring it to you. And here it is.".
There are hundreds of anecdotes. From the consul of Nador, who sent a beautiful and rare specimen, to the owner of the firm Lois, who wrote out a check, without entering an amount, and said to put a price for his Museum. "I will never sell it because the Museum has no price. There are jugs that have cost me up to 20,000 pesetas. But the trips, the walks, the efforts to find the rarest specimens cannot be valued."
The Pablo Castelo Botijo Museum is always open to the public despite being private. Schools, associations, congressmen, personalities from political and military life... "It is a contribution that I make to the people. My collections are not mine, they belong to everyone. They are always available to whoever wants to see them."
NO-DO Documentary Video (1974)
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