Prologue: The story of the house

The House of Leaves was a maternity hospital at the beginning. It was built in   1931   as   an   obstetric   clinic   at   the   initiative of   the   distinguished physician Dr. Jani Basho and it was run by him. It is the first of this kind in Albania and this has been its function during the thirties.

During   the   early   postwar   years,   the House   of   Leaves was   used   as   an investigation center, thus also as a place where tortures were made. The practice   of   tortures   and   other   terror   forms   was   accepted   also   by   the official communist   propaganda   but as if   they   occurred until   the   time of breaking up with Yugoslavia (1948): they were attributed to the Yugoslavia influences and the so-called Titoist agents in the political police. As it is   shown   in   this   museum,   torture   was   practiced   throughout   the   communist regime.

Starting   from   the   fifties,   the   functions   of   this   building   were changed.   Yet,   for   decades   legends   have   circulated   about   it,   the fruit of secrecy and mystery that wrapped this house. The seat of Security   technical-scientific branch   was   here,   which   dealt   mainly with the electronic interception, control of telephones and postal control, in addition to being also the headquarters of a branch that was concerned with the pursuit of foreigners. They continued until the   Security   dissolution   in   1991.   The   technical-scientific   branch had   an   assisting   and   leading   role   for   other   Security   sectors   in these activities.