After an 18-month closure, the Monrovia Historical Museum, a trove of artifacts and stories on the early days of Monrovia, will reopen on Nov. 7.
The hiatus gave the museum an opportunity to expand and enhance its exhibitions. New features include an updated Monrovia High School exhibit with yearbooks; a Monrovia Fire Department exhibit, still being completed; and an upcoming display on the city’s diversity created in conjunction with Monrovia ChangeMakers.
While the majority of the museum’s military exhibit consists of World War II memorabilia, World War I artifacts from the collection have just been incorporated. Stories of the broader community in wartime, including Japanese internment, have also been recently added. The museum’s collection of vintage phones has been cleaned, researched, photographed and rehung with informative signage. Some now ring with their original ring boxes.
The shutdown also allowed the museum to start large-scale updates in the West Wing. Old lighting was replaced with energy-saving LED fixtures, and display cases were repainted and refurbished to create new exhibit opportunities.
The museum building once housed the city’s Municipal Plunge, the public swimming pool. The former dressing rooms now comprise its two exhibit wings, covering more than 8,000 square feet. The museum’s regular operating hours are Sunday and Thursday from 1-4 p.m. Accessible parking is available on the east side of the building.