The Kelley House Museum

September 15, 2018
Category: Things to do in Mendocino, CA

Mendocino, California, is becoming increasingly popular amongst tourists due to miles of gorgeous coastline, breathtaking views, imperial forests, and seemingly endless outdoor activities. Visitors and locals alike appreciate Mendocino for its growing art community, amazing sense of culture, gourmet restaurants, exquisite wineries, and pristine natural beauty. During your stay, be sure to visit The Kelley House Museum.


Visit The Kelley House Museum

Located in the heart of Mendocino city, and founded in 1973, the Kelley House Museum sits on the coast providing breathtaking ocean views, offers one acre of lush gardens and a calming pond and shares the beautiful history of Mendocino Coast with visitors. Kelley House Museum is a learning center, research facility, and an amazing local resource, with several thousands of historical documents, photographs, artifacts, exhibits, and programs. The house is fully furnished with furniture from the 1800s, and the bedrooms upstairs store items that belonged to the homes original Kelley owners.  Kelley House Museum is open Friday through Monday from 11am-3pm. 

Some popular exhibits include The Native American Exhibit, The Frolic Shipwreck and the “Then and Now” photography exhibit.

The Native American exhibit provides a peek into the lives of the local Pomo Indians who lived along the coast prior to European settlement in 1850. The exhibit showcases an abundance of images and artifacts to offer a peek into their daily life routines. Some of the artifacts include hand-woven baskets, decorative gifts, handmade tools, a woven infant carrier, and a cradle, to name a few. 

The Frolic Shipwreck offers rescued artifacts, photographs, preserved written statements and more regarding the 1850 Clipper Ship named “Frolic,” which crashed on a local reef nearby Point Cabrillo Light Station while transporting individuals and imported goods to San Francisco during the Gold Rush. Frolic’s story is considered “the most significant shipwreck on the West Coast” by historians, and her life-changing story is provided in-depth at Kelley House Museum. 

Then and Now exhibit shares several dozens of images taken initially over one hundred years ago by local photographer Perley Maxwell and printed by students of Mendocino High School, displayed next to updated digital images of the same locations taken by those same students. Explore the entire city, compare photographs and discover just how much of it has changed over the years - or stayed true to its historical roots. 

Stay at Hill House Inn

Treat yourself to tranquility, striking coastal views, and unsurpassable relaxation at Hill House Inn. Located near the scenic Highway 1, and walking distance from multiple attractions, this Inn offers its guests choice amenities, friendly staff, complimentary WiFi, newspaper service, self-parking, as well as coffee and tea service. Hill House Inn also offers concierge service, and a restaurant and bar, and makes an ideal wedding venue. If guests prefer to stay close, they may enjoy time in the picnic area, reading or lounging by the fireplace or taking a leisurely stroll through the lush gardens. Additionally, amazing city attractions are within walking distance of the hotel. For the lowest rates book directly at