Discover the Roots of California’s Heartland

The San Joaquin County Historical Museum reveals the fascinating history of the region, from the Yokuts and Miwok through Captain Charles Weber (founder of Stockton and first farmer in the area) and the development of modern agriculture. The Museum has eight exhibition buildings, four historic buildings — including the Charles Weber cottage (1847) and Calaveras School (1866) — and features room dioramas of Weber family furnishings, a children’s gallery, and large displays of hand tools and agricultural equipment.

What's Happening
Blue Star Museum

The San Joaquin County Historical Museum is proud to be among the more than 2,000 museums across America to give free admission to active-duty military personnel and their families again this summer (Memorial Day through Labor Day). For a list of other Blue Star museums, see http://arts.gov/national/blue-star-museums

Festival of Trees Event December 5 & 6 (10 am to 4 pm)

Even Scrooge would get in the holiday spirit gazing at 70 beautifully decorated unique Christmas trees at the Museum Docent Council's 24th annual Festival of Trees event. Docents dressed in vintage Victorian and pioneer clothes will make those attending feel as though they have stepped back in time to celebrate Christmas. The Museum’s seven exhibit buildings will be brimming with dozens of festive trees, each decorated according to a unique theme by different individuals and groups from throughout San Joaquin County. The festival also features charming Christmas exhibits, entertainment, model trains, and many activities including vintage craft demonstrations. For children, there will be many hands-on activities including decorating cookies, making cornhusk dolls, dipped candles, and punched tin ornaments. There is a nominal cost of $1 to $2 for children to make the crafts. Children also will be able to visit Santa. General admission tickets are $10 and $1 for children 2  to 12 years old. Children under 2 are admitted free. Tickets may be purchased at the event or in advance(beginning Oct 1)  by calling the museum at (209) 331-2055 or 953-3460 or at the Music Box in Stockton or Lodi. By purchasing tickets in advance, the $6 parking fee for Micke Grove Regional Park is waived. Festival of Trees is the Museum Docent Council’s primary fundraiser to support the Museum's educational programs.

New, expanded Native Peoples Gallery in the Erickson Building

New exhibits in an expanded Native Peoples Gallery opened on August 21, 2015, and may be enjoyed during regular Museum hours. Added are videos showing traditional basket making, acorn preparation, and deer hunting—you can associate artifacts displayed in the exhibit cases with those shown in the videos. Small children will also enjoy a kids-level video of swimming salmon. With the push of a button, you can sit and listen to three recorded messages. In one recording Glen Villa, Jr. (Northern Miwok/Plains Miwok) tells about the First People and a traditional creation narrative. Another recording is of a traditional Yokuts story, told by Sylvia Ross (Chukchansi Yokuts). The third recording tells of the Indian freedom fighters led by Estanislao, for whom the Stanislaus River and County were named. There is a hands-on activity for younger visitors, a cannon barrel like the ones used by the Mexican army that fought against Estanislao and his patriots, and a large mural of an Indian man and woman bedside a lush riverside. The mural is a photo-mosaic made up of more than 7,000 small photos. The small photos depict important plants, animals, landscapes, and so on—representing the close connections that Native peoples have with their homelands. The expanded Native Peoples Gallery was funded by the Nature Education Facilities Program, created by the 2006 Clean Water Bond Act. Additional support came from donations in memory of Richard Beecher Salmon.

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