Mutter Museum, Philadelphia
Categories: Science Museums, Specialty Museums, Museums
Founded in 1858, Mutter Museum displays an array of medical equipment, biological samples, models, diagrams, and bizarre preserved specimens. The museum itself is a section of the College of Physicians of Philadelphia, and includes preserved abnormal human organs, bones, and wax molds, intended to display the mystery and complexity of the human body. While many exhibits are strange and are presented as if in a Victorian-era museum, they also provide a great deal of information on the progression of medical technology. Be aware that this museum may not be suitable for the faint of heart or those easily disturbed. Use our Philadelphia vacation planner to add Mutter Museum and other attractions to your Philadelphia vacation plans.
Create a full itinerary - for free!
We spent a couple hours in this museum. It's very informative. Not for the faint of heart (or stomach). Somewhat of a medical anomaly museum. They have jars filled with real body parts - most of which... read more »
Overall the Mutter museum is very educational. There are some very fascinating items. Some things I was expecting more or maybe more odd. Worth a visit though
this is a free self guided tour, take the time to read the history boards on the wall. you could actually watch the process start to finish of the coin process, interesting gift shop at the end of the... read more »
This place is a gem, and I wouldn't even have known it was here, if I hadn't stumbled upon it. It was creepy and delightful, informative, and intriguing. Their human skull collection was impressive, and I would like to go back to visit again. One thing that I loved was their quirky and humorous little gift shop, with stuffed organ plushies.
Loved it. I lived in Philly my whole life and never thought to visit this museum, even though I work at Penn and walked past it many times during lunchtime excursions around the area. My sister and I then read Dr. Mutter's Marvels, and we had to visit. We were enthralled with it all. Somewhat grotesque, but fascinating. The Soap Lady was truly the best part of the exhibit for me, especially because of the connection to Joseph Leidy (I work in Leidy Labs). When we visited on a summer Monday morning, it was busy, but not crowded. It took us about 2.5 hours to see everything. I did read a lot, but not everything. I will have to go back to learn more. If visiting Philadelphia, there are three museums that are "Must-Sees" for everyone: The Art Museum, The Barnes Museum, and the Mutter Museum.
The exhibits in this museum are densely packed and do not change often, though there is a small area for temporary exhibits which often highlight medically inspired artwork. Student tickets are $12 and I would recommend 1-2 hours for this museum, depending on how interested you are in weird and anomalous medical artifacts and samples. The building itself is beautiful to visit with a grand marble staircase that leads to an upper floor where The College of Physicians of Philadelphia hold their meetings. The landing has a wonderful statue of Ascelpius, the father of medicine. The landing and stairs are roped off daily visitors but the building can be booked for private event rentals. Note: There is a phone-guided tour for some of the exhibits, but the majority of the displays do not have much detail. For example, on the bottom floor there is a display case with a hodge-podge collection of bones. I attended this museum with a medical student who had a grand time trying to piece together which bone belonged to which part of the body but otherwise there were no indicators to describe what you may be viewing. There is also a small medical garden on the right of the building that exhibits some medicinal plants that is a relaxing retreat after browsing through skulls and persevered babies. If you balk at the idea taking your child to see body parts in jars or weird hair samples, one thing that never ceases to amaze me is the curiosity of children. When visiting this museum, the parents who are forward thinking enough to bring their kids end up being the squeamish ones while the children are just curious and wondering "why?". It is a great place to start discussions with children about science, research, and the human body.
Do you enjoy medical oddities? Do you enjoy medicine in general and like knowing about the human body? You've found your place. This is one of the most interesting places filled with medical oddities and interests galore. They even do events for Philadelphia science week that bring in experts to talk to the people involved (average joes) about how something could of happened. It's a wonderful museum and if you like anatomy, physiology and the weird things that can happen with it, this place is totally for you.
Just as shocking as you'd think, based on its reputation. That said, don't bring the kids, folks. It's gruesomely informative.
Unable to display map at this time. Please try again later.
Visit for 3h
Visit for 2h
Visit for 1h
Visit for 1h 30m
Visit for 30m
Visit for 2h 30m
Visit for 1h 30m
Visit for 2h 30m
Are you the owner of this business? Click here for promotion tips.