In 1986, the San Diego Chinese Historical Society was established in order to preserve and uphold Chinese and Chinese American history and culture. In the 1990’s, the local Chinese community learned that the building that had served as their church and school was slated for demolition. In response, the Historical Society rallied to save the historic mission building. Finally, the City approved plans to relocate the building to the heart of old Chinatown, at the corner of J Street and Third Avenue.
Following relocation and renovation, the San Diego Chinese Historical Museum was finally born in 1996. SDCHM has grown from its humble beginnings to encompass 3 downtown facilities and a Chinese-style garden. Over the past 20 years, the museum has welcomed hundreds of thousands of visitors, collected thousands of ethnographic artifacts, and hosted hundreds of educational programs and exhibitions. Today, SDCHM remains a platform to celebrate multiculturalism, enrich the community, and showcase San Diego as an international and cultural tourist destination.
The museum’s exhibits share the heritage of San Diego’s Chinese community and the essence of Chinese arts and culture through historic photographs, miniature models, ancient artifacts and explanatory text. Special events also celebrate holidays like the Chinese New Year, the Moon Festival, and Veterans Day.
Current & Upcoming Exhibitions
Ongoing and Upcoming Exhibitions
True Colors: A Student Art Showcase | February 28-May 10, 2020
- The San Diego Chinese Historical Museum is pleased to announce a collaborative exhibit featuring student artwork in conjunction with the San Diego Chinese Arts and Cultural Society. Honorees of the annual SDCACS Student Art Competition have been invited to display their works at the San Diego Chinese Historical Museum’s Dr. Sun Yat Sen Memorial Extension. This exhibit showcases the talents of young artists between the ages of 5-18 who represent art studios from across San Diego County. We welcome you to step into their vibrant world of different colors, textures, and mediums, as well as participate in selecting a piece for our Visitors’ Choice Award!
Objects of Curiosity: Creative Community Reinterpretations of Our Permanent Collection | May 30-August 30 2020
- The San Diego Chinese Historical Museum will be inviting artists of all ages from the greater San Diego community to select an object of their choosing from the Museum’s permanent exhibit to inspire an artwork of their creation, which will then be on display from May 30-August 30, 2020, at the Dr. Sun Yat Sen Memorial Extension (328 J Street).
Tours and Lectures
Asian Pacific Historic District Walking Tour | Every second Saturday of the month, 11 am – 12:30pm
- Explore Old Chinatown and Japanese and Filipino neighborhoods in San Diego’s old Stingaree red light district. Space is limited and reservations are recommended. Please RSVP by calling the museum 619-338-9888 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. The tour is included with museum admission, and is co-sponsored by the Asian Pacific Historic Collaborative.
Monthly Lectures and Talks
- Explore intriguing aspects of Chinese arts, culture, and history in a series of monthly lectures hosted in the Museum’s Chuang Archive & Learning Center at 541 2nd Avenue. For more details on specific lectures, please visit our events calendar at https://www.sdchm.org/events/month/. Museum lectures are free for members and a suggested donation of $5 for non-members.
Educational Programs and Special Tours
- The Museum’s Educational team regularly hosts tours for special interest groups, educational groups, and visitors. Educational programming aligns with the Common Core standards of California, and covers topics such as: Chinese American history, ancient Chinese History, and San Diego Chinatown History.
- The SDCHM has served: The Barnard School, Girl Scouts San Diego, The Monarch School, The Riley School, San Diego City College, The Chinese Academy of San Diego, and many other institutions of greater San Diego County.
- Contact <email@example.com> for inquiries regarding the educational programs that San Diego Chinese Historical Museum has to offer!
Visit San Diego Chinese Historical Museum
404 Third Avenue
San Diego , CA 92101
Wednesday- Sunday: 10:30 AM - 4 PM
404 Third Avenue, San Diego, CA