The Museum has an extensive collection of over 30,000 records collected for over 130 years.
Highlights of our collection include:
- Bird Collection
- Native American Basket Collection
- Native American Pottery Collection
- Native American Textiles Collection
- Collection Curator's Selection
- Chinese Fishing Village Heritage Photographs
- Pacific Grove Heritage Photographs
- Pt. Pinos Lighthouse Heritage Photographs
The Museum's strong bird collection reflect's the fact that Monterey County is one of the most important sites for bird life in North America. It is one of the top 5 destinations in North America to bird watch. Monterey County has one of the highest single-day bird counts in the country. 482 different species of birds have been sighted in Monterey County.
The Museum showcases one of the most extensive bird collections on display on the West Coast. Use the Museum's bird collection of 291 bird species and 409 life mounted birds to identify the birds you’ve seen throughout Monterey County. Witness the size of a mighty California Condor, the Yellow-billed Magpie, Lawrence's Goldfinch, and the Tri-colored Blackbird, to name a few.
Native American Basketry
Consisting mostly of Native American baskets, the Museum's basketry collection contains spectacular examples of artistry, technique and utility. Please be aware that these items are not currently on exhibit.
Native American Pottery
The Museum's pottery collection includes over 250 vessels with examples from Acoma to Zuni. Notable highlights include San Ildefonso Pueblo pottery by Maria Montoya Martinez. Please be aware that these items are not currently on exhibit.
Native American Textiles
Collection Curator's Selection
With such an eclectic collection, there are some fantastic objects in the Museum's collection that fall outside the scope of the topics listed on this page. The Collection Curator's selection are highlights from these other areas of the collection. Please be aware that these items are not currently on exhibit.
The Museum's Herbarium, developed largely by the Museum's Director Emeritus Vern Yadon, is a collection of Monterey County plants with detailed records regarding when and where the plants were collected. The Museum's herbarium is included in UC Berkeley's Jepson On-Line Interchange, California Florista.