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San Mateo County History Museum, Redwood City

(50+ reviews on the web)
Specialty Museum
The San Mateo County History Museum, housed in the old County Courthouse, offers visitors an opportunity to discover the San Francisco Peninsula's colorful past from the original Native American inhabitants of yesterday to the Silicon Valley innovators of today.

The 1910 building, on the National Register of Historic Places, features one of the largest stained glass domes in California, an extensive archives library, a thematic gift shop and a huge used bookstore. The beautifully restored space is also available to rent for special events.

The San Mateo County History Museum is part of the San Mateo County Historical Association, a member-supported nonprofit organization. In addition to the museum in Redwood City, the Historical Association operates the Woodside Store in Woodside and the Sanchez Adobe in Pacifica.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • Built in 1910 to house the County Courts, the building is now the San Mateo County History Museum. It's just a short walk from the train station. It has a beautiful stained-glass dome, which I think i...  more »
  • This museum tells you about the Redwood City Bay Area back when the Ohlone Indians were here. Tells the history of what and how they lived. Then the progression into the Spanards coming to the area. I...  more »
  • This lovely museum is easy for children and their parents to enjoy. Supported by the wonderful bookstore in its basement, most people don't even know that it is there, in the center of Redwood City. P...  more »
Google
  • Great museum in a historical court house. The exhibits helped me learned a good deal about the history of San Mateo County and much much. I especially enjoyed the exhibits about the many ethnic cultures and their contributions to San Mateo County. A great place to visit no matter your age. Just see the inside of the building is worth the price of admission alone. Cheers.
  • Looked nice enough but not great for young kids. My 3 year old got antsy and we couldn't stay long enough to make it through the whole thing. We saw some cool model boats, and exhibits about world war 2, and the development of the suburbs. Overall a nice place to learn about the area for older kids and adults.
  • Good place to explore about the local history. Learnt a lot about local transportation and suburb culture of san Mateo county. Ships of the world is a must visit gallery. There were handcrafted models of ship on display. The video and audio presentations were informative.
  • Really great museum. Really glad that we went in and spent an hour or two there. Friendly staff and a mix of interesting stories and deeply moving reflection on history.
  • A surprisingly large and interesting museum covering the history of San Mateo county. Beautiful architecture in the old courthouse and a restored court room shows what life was like in the early 1900s.