The origins of the museum’s collection date back to 1878, when the Ministry for Public Works, Trade and Industry issued instructions to the Directorate General of the Postal Services to create a postal museum. Following these instructions, the latter set up the museum and donated its first thirty pieces.
Today, the museum's heritage includes a valuable collection of artefacts ranging from the 16th century to the present day, including an important collection of stamps from Portugal and almost all of the member countries of the Universal Postal Union (UPU).
The museum’s heritage is grouped into large collections to favour its organisation and provide the best conditions for handling, archiving and research.
This heritage is divided into three collections: postal, telecommunications, art and philately.
The museum's heritage entrusted to the Foundation can be found in:
- The Communications Museum’s permanent exhibition “Overcoming Distance: Five Centuries of Communications in Portugal” and temporary exhibitions;
Limited access and maximum security locations equipped with computerised environment control systems for stabilising temperature and relative humidity conditions correctly.
The museum's heritage is catalogued on a computer database that allows consultation of information on each item including a digitised image.
Information is also made available on the Internet via the MatrizWeb Digital Catalogue.