About Us

The La Habra Historical Museum, founded by the La Habra Old Settlers Historical Society, serves as a center for gathering, preserving, and interpreting significant historical artifacts, including photos, charts, maps, and books, for the purpose of educating and developing an appreciation of La Habra’s past.

Its mission is to enhance the knowledge of La Habra’s heritage by providing attractive and accessible exhibits and related programs emphasizing the understanding of the many historical eras in the community’s development from the days of the missions, through the various agricultural periods, the discovery of oil, and the formation of the city and its growth through the decades.

Maybe you are wondering… what is the definition of a museum?

According to the Online Etymology Dictionary, the word museum first appears in the 1610s in reference to “the university building in Alexandria” (look up the Great Library of Alexandria.)

It comes from the Latin museum for “library, study, learned occupation,” and from the Greek mouseion for “a place of study or library,” and originally “a seat or shrine of the Muses” (Mousa for “Muse.”) The earliest use in reference to English institutions was of libraries (e.g. British Museum.) It was first recorded in the sense of “building to display objects” in the 1680s.

Current definitions are:
A museum is a non-profit, permanent institution in the service of society and its development, open to the public, which acquires, conserves, researches, communicates, and exhibits the tangible and intangible heritage of humanity and its environment for the purposes of education, study and enjoyment.

An institution devoted to the procurement, care, study, and display of objects of lasting interest or value; a place where objects are exhibited.

This means that a museum can be a building dedicated to the display of art, history, science, or technology, as well as an aquarium, a zoo, or a botanical garden. Collected items, therefore, can be living objects.

The La Habra Historical Museum displays a plaque and a Swamp Lily that originally came across the prairie in the 1800′s with the Launer family and planted on the site of our museum. The lily is a living artifact of the museum; another one of our historical objects that ties the past to the present.

Come by and visit us Saturdays 12 noon-4 pm!Go further back in time and learn about life in early La Habra through the stories of people who tell their stories in the 1920′s style theater.

Visit the General Store and see how many objects you can identify.

Wander through the main room and glimpse into our Windows in Time and learn about farming, early businesses, and home life.
If you are part of a Scout troop, or an organization with ties to La Habra, please call us to set up special tours of the museum.There are lots of opportunities for volunteers, including docents to give tours, for people of all ages.This is your museum! Come learn about your community and be part of its history.Archive of museum past exhibits, memorials and general news here