The idea of setting up and housing a tobacco museum in the old Briekenmolen rose for the first time in 1961. Despite the good intentions, the project did not get through and the Briekenmolen was a dancing for some years. Only in the mid-seventies (1975) the idea came up again, to create a museum around the typical industry of the region. By the end of 1979, the city of Wervik finally purchased the Briekenmolen, which meant a new start for the idea.
In 1981, "The Friends of the Tobacco Museum" was held above the font. It should become the driving force behind the museum and immediately started collecting objects and documents.
In 1984, the restoration work started at the Briekenmolen and its outbuildings. On the 4th of April 1987 the doors of the museum were festively opened.
A new building was added in 2000-2003, and recently and the presentation was renewed. In the National Tobacco Museum you will find 4 centuries of tobacco history in word and image. All facets of the rich tobacco culture are discussed: the planting, harvesting and drying of tobacco, the tobacco smell in the tobacco stores, the most weird attributes to smoke, sniff or chew tobacco and beautiful retro posters and publicity. In these years of commemoration of the Great War, the museum also offers the story of the phenomenon of smoking in times of the Great War the museum presents and discusses how tobacco played an undeniable role in the daily life of the military in action. Because the slogan did say 'No Smoke - No Soldier'?