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Note: We are closed to the public until further notice due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Please visit our participatory Berkeley History Facebook Group page and consider joining the group. You can also delve into Berkeley history online via the links on our Online Resources page. We especially invite you to visit an online exhibit with pictures and text outlining the history of central Berkeley here.

Have you, or someone you know, made masks for others during this pandemic? We are collecting stories of mask-making here.

As an all-volunteer organization that does not charge admission, we are faring better than many other small museums, but we do have some expenses, so please think about becoming a BHS member.


Our Latest Exhibit

Four families photos

This was the first in a series of exhibits to explore the extensive history of African Americans in Berkeley, beginning with the first early families, through the explosion in population during the wartime industry boom of World War II, and into the civil rights era and beyond. The series will explore housing issues, including racial covenants, redlining, fair housing legislation and the current displacement crisis; religious, social and business organizations; arts, entertainment, education, politics and sports; and notable Black contributors to the city’s civic life. This first exhibit focused on four African American families: the Reids, the Howards, the Rumfords, and the Griffins. The exhibit included a rich photographic record and personal memorabilia. Subsequent exhibits in the series are now scheduled for spring 2021 and 2022.

Coming soon:

Berkeley's Fascination with Food, an exhibit currently being prepared by a team of volunteers coordinated by Ann Harlow. Originally planned to open in April 2020, the team is now hoping to develop an online, virtual exhibit and related online events by October.


In addition to changing exhibits, the History Center now features a permanent illustrated Timeline of Berkeley History giving an overview of major periods and events in the evolution of the city.

Hours (during exhibits): Thursday–Saturday, 1–4 pm.

Admission free, donations welcome.

Wheelchair accessible. (If you arrive by wheelchair, please phone us so we can open the door at the top of the ramp.)

Berkeley Historical Society and Berkeley History Center

1931 Center Street, Berkeley 
Telephone: 510-848-0181

Mailing address: P.O. Box 1190, Berkeley, CA 94701


Follow the Berkeley Historical Society on Facebook and join our Berkeley History Facebook Group.

See the CALENDAR page for BHS events and other local events of interest.

For past exhibits and events, see our Web Archive.



© 2010-2020 - Berkeley Historical Society
1931 Center Street - Berkeley, CA 94704

Get Directions: (510) 848-0181