Whatcom Museum of History and Art

THE WHATCOM MUSEUM occupies three distinctive and historically significant buildings in downtown Bellingham’s cultural district.


… is designed by Olson Sundberg Kundig Allen Architects’ founding partner, Jim Olson. The building is named for its focal point and most innovative feature a spectacular, translucent wall 37 feet high and 180 feet long, that captures the Northwest’s most precious natural resource: sunlight. The 42,000-square-foot-building integrates natural materials native to the region and will be the first museum in Washington designed and registered to LEED Silver-Level specifications.
Hours: noon-5 PM Tuesday-Sunday
FIG also open Tues and Fri 9 AM-noon

OLD CITY HALL…121 Prospect Street

… home to Whatcom Museum since 1941, is a beloved city landmark. With its Victorian cupolas and central clock tower a stately community presence for more than a century, the history of the building and its inhabitants (including prisoners!) remains central to the Whatcom Museum’s mission. While our fine art exhibitions have moved to the climate-controlled galleries of the Lightcatcher, Old City Hall reopens in December 2009 for with some of its most popular programs. long-term plans include renovating the building to include additional space for both temporary and permanent history exhibitions, while opening areas like the old basement jail for tours.
Open for special programming.


…is home to a classroom space and permanent historical exhibits for group tours and school field trips including Northwest Coast First Nations, Pioneer Life, Logging, and Birds of the Pacific Northwest. Built in 1926 as the City of Bellingham’s fire hall and adjacent to the 1892 Old City Hall Building, the Whatcom Museum’s widely recognized Photo Archives are also located on the second floor of the Syre Education Center; the archives are open to the public for research.
Open by appointment.

Place Categories: Art MuseumPlace Tags: paintings, Photography, printmaking and sculptures

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