Keep Martinez’s Rich History Alive!

Enjoy this Virtual Tour of the Martinez Museum

The Martinez Historical Society was founded in 1973 to save this 1890 cottage and site from becoming another downtown parking lot.  Convinced that our city’s history deserved a repository where papers, documents, photographs and artifacts could be housed, we asked the City of Martinez to join us in acquiring the “Borland House” for these purposes.  In February 1974, the Contra Costa Community College District, who owns the building, issued us a lease that remains in effect today.

Working with volunteers and community development funding, we renovated and opened two rooms in June of 1976, the Bicentennial Year.  Every four months thereafter we opened another room until the entire house was restored and made accessible to visitors by June 1979.  However, our present library room was left much as it had been when used as a mid-Century office building.  This highlights the magnitude of the work that has been done in the other rooms to restore the structure to a close approximation of its original Victorian appearance.

Our present displays are part of the on-going effort to “Keep Martinez History Alive” and are periodically changed so there are new exhibits to see each time you return to the Museum.  All displays, cataloging, housekeeping, gardening, and other duties are performed by volunteers.

In addition to our interesting exhibits for the casual visitor, our Society has developed a comprehensive local history library for serious researchers. We have maps, the city’s property assessment books from 1884 to the late 1940’s, a massive collection of historic photographs, artifacts from the city and county, the county census records from 1860 – 1920, a newspaper clipping file, and much more.

We hope that you enjoy your cyber visit to our Museum and leave with some knowledge of our town’s past.

We invite you to visit the Borland House, any Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday from 11:00 am to 3:00 pm, except for major holidays.

Admission is free.