Beginnings: The Phoebe Hearst Era (1901-1920)
The founding collections of the Museum include Egypt, Peru, Ancient Mediterranean, and Native Californian.
Native Californian Cultures
Over thousands of years, the Native peoples of the present state of California developed many complex cultures, with differing customs related to varied environments and histories. Native Californian Cultures is dedicated exclusively to displays drawn from the Museum's permanent collections from California, the world's largest and most comprehensive devoted to this region. In a "visible storage" style of display, about 500 objects illustrate the great diversity of the Californian peoples who live within the boundaries of the present state. By grouping objects according to common usage or object type, the similarities and differences among California peoples are made readily apparent.