Museum History Interactive Timeline
|1894||Leland Stanford Jr. Museum opens to the public|
When it first opened its doors to the public in 1894, the Leland Stanford Jr. Museum was unique among American museums, having been privately founded by a family with a general collection of world art on a par with the great public museums being built at the time. By the turn of the century, the Stanford museum was the largest privately-owned museum building in the world. Its archeological and ethnological holdings were a rarity on the Pacific Coast, and by 1905 its collection of Asian materials was unsurpassed in the western United States.
The museum served as a monument and memorial to young Leland, who was a precocious and avid collector himself, and to his mother, Jane, who was dedicated to the educational potential of a great museum.