Where Is the Oldest Natural History Museum in the US?

Do you know where the oldest natural history museum in the US is located? If you’re a lover of history and nature, this is something that you should definitely know. The oldest natural history museum in the US is none other than the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University, located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

History of the Academy of Natural Sciences

The Academy of Natural Sciences was founded in 1812, making it the oldest natural sciences institution in the Western Hemisphere. It was created by a group of seven men who shared a passion for science and nature. The original purpose of the academy was to encourage scientific research and knowledge.

Over the years, the academy has continued to fulfill its mission. Today, it is one of the leading centers for biodiversity research and environmental science. It has an extensive collection of specimens, including more than 18 million plant and animal specimens.

Visiting the Academy

If you’re interested in visiting the academy, there are plenty of things to see and do. One of the most popular exhibits is Dinosaur Hall, which features a collection of dinosaur skeletons and fossils. You can also explore exhibits on butterflies, birds, mammals, and more.

In addition to exhibits, there are also educational programs available for visitors of all ages. These programs include guided tours, workshops, and hands-on activities.

The Importance of Natural History Museums

Natural history museums are important because they help us understand our world and our place in it. They allow us to learn about different species and ecosystems from around the globe. They also provide opportunities for scientific research that can help us better understand our planet’s past and present.

In addition to their scientific value, natural history museums also have cultural significance. They can help us appreciate biodiversity and conservation efforts. They can also inspire new generations to pursue careers in science or environmentalism.


The Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania is the oldest natural history museum in the US. Its rich history and extensive collections make it a must-visit destination for anyone interested in science and nature. Natural history museums like the Academy play an important role in helping us understand our world and our place in it.