Chula Vista Heritage Museum
360 Third Ave (east side of Memorial Park)
Chula Vista CA 91910-3932
Tuesday & Thursday 12 - 4pm
(may also be open during special events)
Admission is free.
Special school and group tours are by appointment only. To book a tour please call the Museum at (619) 427-8092.
was founded 1993, and is part of the Chula Vista
Public Library System. The building was built in 1946.
The Chula Vista Heritage Museum focuses on exhibits about Chula Vista's past. Artifacts and photos chronicle the settlement and development of Chula Vista, including historic homes and buildings, daily life, community events, noted individuals, and the city's citrus and aircraft industry.
Congratulations Chula Vista Heritage Museum Contest Winners
The Chula Vista Public Library and the Chula Vista Heritage Museum are excited to announce the winners of the Chula Vista Centennial Photo Contest. The contest, funded by a Community Enhancement Program Grant from the County of San Diego, encouraged photographers to visit Chula Vista and view it from November 15, 2010 to April 30, 2011. One hundred twenty entries were submitted, capturing images of an assortment of places, wildlife, and people that make our city memorable.
All photographs were reviewed by a panel of judges. Four prize winners and two merit winners were awarded cash prizes. The winning photographs will be on display in the Civic Center branch of the Chula Vista Public Library starting July 19th.
The prize winners are:
This Land Is Your Land, This Land Is My Land: Japanese Americans in Chula Vista (June 2012 - May 2013)
Sponsored by the Friends of the Chula Vista Library, the exhibit documents the arrival of Japanese workers in 1905, the “celery wars” of the 1920s, and the community’s internment during World War II.
The exhibit features a replica of the Poston, Arizona, barracks where about 450 Chula Vista residents were interned during the war.
Glimpses of History: Celebrating 100 Years of Chula Vista (June 2011 - May 2012)
Celebrating the city of Chula Vista's Centennial year of 2011, the museum opened a new photography exhibit in June documenting the city's 100 year-history.
Historic photos illustrate the city's growth from its agricultural start as the "Lemon Capital of the World" to San Diego County's second largest municipality.
The exhibit is funded by a Community Enhancement Program Grant from the County of San Diego.
Historical Agricultural Exhibit (June 2010 - May 2011)
The day when Chula Vista was mostly lemon groves and farms (1880s-1960s) is gone but important elements in the city’s agricultural past are being preserved.
This exhibit presented a history of farming in the area, including crops, people, historical farm equipment, artifacts and farming practices.
The exhibit featured photographs of crops growing and being picked, farm products, farm laborers, plowing, threshing, cultivating, farm property and buildings, farm vehicles and other aspects of farming. Displays highlighted artifacts that were used on the family farm, farming implements, and equipment used in fields and groves.
Education in the South Bay (June 2009 - May 2010)
This popular exhibit showcased the early days of education in Chula Vista and the South Bay. It chronicled the schools and people that shaped the early days of education from the mid 19th century through extensive photographs from the Chula Vista Public Library's local history collection. The exhibit illustrated the history of the buildings and campuses and some of the teachers and students who attended them.
Education in the South Bay Digital Images Collection
The museum's exhibit on historic homes focuses on homes built between the 1880s and the 1930s. The exhibit includes photographs of homes representing various styles of architecture, such as Victorian, Craftsman, Mediterranean, and period Revivals. Various antiques including, china, glass, clothing, textiles, and furniture that are reminiscent of the periods will be also be on display.
Vintage pieces help to create a look of everyday life from a period when Chula Vista was emerging as the county’s center for citrus production or during the subsequent boom the city experienced as a result of the expansion of this local industry.
Many of these homes still stand as living monuments to their builders and the men and women who lived in them.
Rohr Aircraft Corporation Exhibit (March 2008 - April 2008)
Historic photographs, various airplane parts, tools and models, and memorabilia, including a large engine case, and model of a drop hammer, a nacelle and an aerotrain, photos, and personal memorabilia from former Rohr employees.
From its beginnings as a small company founded by Fred H Rohr in 1940, Rohr Aircraft became the world's largest manufacturing subcontractor of jet-related components. The company played an important part in the development of civilian and military air transportation, as well as the nation's space efforts. Rohr was Chula Vista's single largest employer for decades and contributed greatly to the growth and economy of the city. The company was sold to BF Goodrich in 1997.
Rohr Digital Images Collection
Walk of History Tour
In the late 1800s, the center of town was Third Avenue and F Street. Many of the buildings of the 1800s and early 1900s, although altered, still stand where they were originally built. Pedestals with mounted historic photographs are located at each of the historic sites. The Walk of History Tour begins one block north of the Museum. Tour maps are available in the Museum.
Support for the Heritage Museum
The Museum is supported by the Heritage Museum Society, a chapter of the Friends of the Chula Vista Library.
Operating funds come from the sale of books and other items for sale at the Museum, as well as financial donations and Friends of the Library memberships.
Individuals or businesses can help support the Museum and sponsor exhibits by becoming a member of the Friends of the Library or making monetary donations directly to the museum.
Do you have local history items to donate?
The Chula Vista Heritage Museum & Local History Collection also accept
donations of artifacts, pictures, memorabilia, and/or remembrances. Please contact the Museum
or the Local History Librarian at (619)
691-5069, to make arrangements.