The mission of Tempe History Museum is to be a place where the community comes together to explore Tempe’s past, share its present and imagine its future.
We work together with Tempe’s diverse residents to preserve and tell their stories. The Museum comprehensively explores Tempe history through exhibits, activities, speakers, collections, research services, and programs that captivate, connect with and delight audiences throughout the community and beyond. We embrace the important responsibility of collecting and caring for the artifacts and the written, spoken and pictorial records of Tempe.
Vision and Values
Tempe History Museum is a stimulating public forum acting as a catalyst for lively dialogue.
The Tempe History Museum is a community history museum that explores Tempe’s identity and builds connections between residents and their community. We recognize the power of history to provide insights for making decisions relevant to contemporary and future life in an ever-changing society.
As a community history museum, the Museum staff recognizes that Tempe’s history belongs to the community and it is their responsibility to involve community members in collecting, preserving and sharing those stories with the public. The Museum has a large volunteer workforce that works in all aspects of the Museum’s operation, bringing both their talents and points of view. The staff also works with advisory committees composed of members of the Hispanic, Southeast Asian, Muslim and African American communities. Working with volunteers and advisory committees, curators act as facilitators rather than authoritarian interpreters of history. It is important that the Museum’s operation be inclusive so that all aspects of the community are represented in the Museum’s collections and programs.
The Museum, as a municipal institution, follows the City of Tempe’s values. We adhere to a policy of inclusion that provides open access to all of our facilities, operations, and services.
Bill Timmerman photo