SMCHA Collections

The San Mateo County Historical Association's (SMCHA) collection tells the story of San Mateo County's development over time. Through the rich holdings of its Three-Dimensional and Archival Collections, SMCHA is preserving San Mateo County's cultural heritage and increasing knowledge and inspiration among present and future generations of visitors through exhibitions, research and intepretive programs.

Collections Online

The SMCHA is working to make its collection available for online research. Click here to start exploring the collection. Check back soon as the collections online is updated frequently.

Archival Collection

The Archival Collection ranges from 1830 to the present and includes books, clippings, documents, films, fine art, ledgers, letters, manuscripts, memorabilia, microfilm, newspapers, pamphlets, periodicals, transcripts, posters, records, scrapbooks, slides and students monographs. These materials are available for research in the Archives.

Left: Girls Baseball Team, c. 1890. Photograph by James Van Court.

Three-Dimensional Collection

The SMCHA's Three-Dimensional Collection includes objects which are associated with the early exploration and settlements of the Peninsula, the development of towns, early industries, transporatation systems and people who contributed to shaping San Mateo County. The bulk of the Three-Dimension Collection ranges from 1830 to 1950 and includes textiles, architectural items, household goods, bottles, tools, industrial goods, fine art, weapons, furnishings and transportation objects. The collection also includes artifacts and materials excavated from archaeological sites in the County including prehistoric material and artifacts related to the settlement of the area.

Left: First zap gun, Raychem, 1968.