Our Mission

The San Francisco Museum and Historical Society’s mission is to preserve, interpret, present, and disseminate historical data, information, and knowledge relating to the City and County of San Francisco so as to enhance the experience of living in or visiting San Francisco.

Board of Directors

Read about our board.

What We Do

We are devoted to bringing together San Francisco’s past, present and future. SFMHS has more than 2,000 members and fulfills its mission of preserving Bay Area history through a broad spectrum of programs and special events, such as monthly presentations, guided history walks, the Barbary Coast Trail and the annual Awards Luncheon.

The Society produces two publications: The Argonaut, a beautiful journal featuring photographs and in-depth reviews of our city’s history; and Panorama, a quarterly newsletter for members that features upcoming programs and events of interest to our members.

SFMHS is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization (Tax ID 68-0104888). Contributions are tax-deductible to the extent provided by law. Donate now!

Fiscal Sponsorship

The Society uses its nonprofit corporation status to enable other organizations to accept grants from government, foundations, and other funders. At the present time, SFMHS is the fiscal sponsor for a documentary film about the College Players, the theatrical group at the University of San Francisco.

Our Origins

The San Francisco Historical Society was founded by renowned San Francisco historian Charles Fracchia in 1988. As the Society’s president, Fracchia led a merger with the Museum of the City of San Francisco in 2002 to form the San Francisco Museum and Historical Society.

In 2006 the administration of Mayor Willie L. Brown Jr. granted the stewardship of the Old Mint at Fifth and Mission Streets to SFMHS. Over the next several years the Society raised approximately $14 million to restore the building to a usable condition and carried out hundreds of programs there for tens of thousands of San Franciscans and visitors to our city, including the popular History Expo, Standing Ovations, Flipside, and the Holiday Tea. That stewardship ended in 2015.