Discover the APS Museum
Find the rare and the curious. Make creative connections between art and science. Or simply brush up on your history. We invite you to explore our exhibitions at the APS Museum, where you will discover treasures from our own collections—perhaps an herbarium specimen collected by Lewis and Clark, a miniature portrait of Benjamin Franklin, or a drawing for the world’s first computer. You may also encounter scientific specimens, art works, or rare books from Europe and beyond.
With each show, you will also discover innovative works and projects created by contemporary visual artists, musicians, poets, or performers who interpret the historical themes and objects on view and connect them to relevant issues in the world today.
What’s ‘Philosophical’ about the Museum?
In 1743, when Benjamin Franklin and his friends decided to establish the American Philosophical Society (APS), they studied the natural world and called themselves natural philosophers. Now we’d call them scientists. But the word “philosophical” stuck.
For more than 270 years the APS has gathered and preserved a rich collection that traces American history and science from the Founding Fathers to the computer age. It includes scientific specimens and instruments, patent models, portraits, maps, art works, rare books, and some eleven million manuscripts.
The APS Museum is located in Philosophical Hall, 104 South Fifth Street, Philadelphia, PA 19106. For directions and hours click here.
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