Jewellery Museums in the USA
This list of museums is provided as a service to our members. All the museums in this list have jewellery, sometimes rather loosely defined, in their collections, but some may not be on display. Please check in advance before visiting a museum, to avoid disappointment. The descriptions are provided by the museums themselves, or by members.
Please tell us here if there are any other jewellery museums which we should add to this list, or if anything needs correcting.
2301 North Central Avenue, Phoenix, AZ 85004
The mission of the Heard Museum is to be the world’s preeminent museum for the presentation, interpretation and advancement of American Indian art. Key collections include Navajo and Zuni jewellery
GIA. Gemological Institute of America, Inc.
5345 Armada Drive, Carlsbad CA 92008
An extensive collection of jewellery, objets d’art and gemstones of known provenance from earlier cultures and periods.
FIDM Museum. Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising
919 S. Grand Ave, 2nd Floor, Los Angeles, CA 90015
Contains 440 pieces of fine and costume jewellery dating from the 18th century to the present.
LACMA. Los Angeles County Museum of Art
5905 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90036
Large collection of jewellery from the earliest times to international contemporary jewellery in the Lois and Bob Boardman collection. Includes ancient Middle East and Egyptian, and 20th-century Mexican.
Mingei International Museum
1439 El Prado, San Diego, CA 92101
Dedicated to ‘art of the people’ (mingei) from all eras and cultures of the world, the Mingei International Museum also contains the collections of the former Bead Museum of Glendale, Arizona
Mel Fisher Maritime Heritage Museum
200 Greene Street, Key West, Florida 33040
The Mel Fisher Maritime Museum has an extensive collection of artefacts from the 17th-century Spanish shipwrecks of the Nuestra Seňora de Atocha and Santa Margarita (1622), including jewellery and gold and silver bars.
The Charles Hosmer Morse Museum of American Art
445 North Park Avenue, Winter Park, FL 32789
The Morse Museum houses the world’s most comprehensive collection of works by Louis Comfort Tiffany (1848–1933), including the artist and designer’s jewellery, pottery, paintings, art glass, leaded-glass lamps and windows.
The Art Institute of Chicago
111 South Michigan Avenue, Chicago, IL 60603
Located in downtown Chicago, the Art Institute is one of the world’s great art museums, housing a collection that spans centuries and the globe. The collection is extensive with Greek, Roman and Western European jewellery from the Renaissance till 19th century
The Richard H. Driehaus Museum
40 East Erie Street, Chicago, Illinois 60611
The Richard H. Driehaus Museum explores the art, architecture, and design of the late 19th century to the present, including a huge collection of jewellery from the Arts & Crafts period, Art Nouveau, and jewellery up until the 1970s.
Mitchell Museum of the American Indian
3001 Central Street Evanston, IL 60201
The Mitchell Museum of the American Indian houses over 10,000 objects, including jewellery, katsinas, dolls, games and sports, fetishes, beadwork, quillwork, shields, weapons, and carvings.
Lizzadro Museum of Lapidary Art
1220 Kensington Road, Oak Brook, Illinois 60523
The Lizzadro Museum displays gemstone treasures, antiques to modern, with a blending of earth science exhibits, including mosaics, cut gems, carved jade, organic gems and glyptics.
Sidney and Lois Eskenazi Museum of Art
107 S. Indiana Avenue, Bloomington, IN
One of the largest art holdings of any American university art museum, the collection includes traditional African and US contemporary jewellery
IMA. Indianapolis Museum of Art
Newfields, 4000 Michigan Road, Indianapolis, Indiana 46208-3326
The Indianapolis Museum of Art at Newfields’ collection traces the history of art around the globe, from antiquity to the present day. Its jewellery collection includes American and African work.
The Walters Art Museum
600 N. Charles St. Baltimore, MD 21201
The Walters Art Museum’s collection spans more than seven millennia, from 5,000 BCE to the 21st century, and encompasses 36,000 objects. The array of exquisite jewellery represents an enormous range of periods, regions, artistic and stylistic developments and materials.
Fuller Craft Museum
455 Oak Street, Brockton, MA 02301
Fuller Craft Museum is dedicated to the collection and preservation of contemporary craft, including an extensive collection of jewellery. It holds frequent exhibitions on the subject.
MFA. Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
465 Huntington Ave, Boston, MA 02115
From ancient Egyptian broadcollars to contemporary studio jewellery, the MFA has an exciting collection of jewellery from almost every culture. it was the first American art museum to appoint a specialist curator of jewellery in 2006, thanks to a generous and innovative endowment by the Rita J. and Stanley H. Kaplan Family Foundation.
Peabody Museum of Archaeology & Ethnology, Harvard University
11 Divinity Avenue, Cambridge, MA 02138
Established in 1866 as one of the first museums of anthropology, the Peabody Museum currently cares for a large and historic collection of anthropological materials from across the globe, including more than 1.2 million individual cultural items, 500,000 photographic images, and associated archival records.
The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art
4525 Oak Street, Kansas City, MO 64111
The Nelson-Atkins maintains collections of more than 35,000 works of art, including jewellery of the 19th century and contemporary art jewellery.
The Newark Museum of Art
49 Washington Street, Newark, NJ 07102-3176
The Newark Museum has been collecting jewellery since 1911, and has one of the most comprehensive holdings in the country, including an outstanding collection of pieces made at Newark, a leading jewellery manufacturing city from the 19th to the early 20th century. The Lore Ross Jewelry Gallery, newly redesigned and reinstalled, showcases jewellery across seven centuries. The focus of the new installation is the wide array of materials, both noble and humble, that have been used over the centuries to create things of beauty for personal adornment.
Wheelwright Museum Center for the Study of Southwestern Jewelry
704 Camino Lejo, Santa Fe, NM 87505
In keeping with its tradition of excellence in research and interpretation, the Wheelwright has built an important representative collection of Navajo and Pueblo jewellery. Many of the earliest objects are documented or attributed to known makers which enables the museum to present the story of jewellery in the Southwest as a human endeavour rather than just an anonymous sequence of styles.
Corning Museum of Glass
1 Museum Way, Corning, NY 14830
Includes extensive collection of glass beads and jewellery from the earliest times to the present day
American Museum of Natural History
200 Central Park West, New York, NY 10024-5102
The completely redesigned Allison and Roberto Mignone Halls of Gems and Minerals re-opened recently. These spectacular halls offer a brilliant showcase for one of the world’s most important collections of gems and minerals.
MAD. Museum of Art and Design
2 Columbus Circle, New York, NY 11001
The Museum first opened its doors in 1956 as the Museum of Contemporary Crafts, with an original mission of recognising the craftsmanship of contemporary American artists. It has an important collection of contemporary studio jewellery
The Metropolitan Museum of Art
The Met Fifth Avenue, 1000 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10028
Large and internationally important collection of jewellery from all regions and ages.
The Met Cloisters, 99 Margaret Corbin Drive, Fort Tryon Park, New York, NY 10040
Contains approximately 2,000 works of art from medieval Europe, largely dating from the 12th through the 15th century and including exquisite illuminated manuscripts, stained glass, metalwork, enamels, ivories, tapestries, and the Griffin Collection of Rings.
National Museum of the American Indian, Smithsonian
Alexander Hamilton U.S. Custom House, One Bowling Green, New York, NY 10004
Extensive collection of early costume and ornaments of native Americans.
Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum
2 East 91st Street, New York, NY
Cooper Hewitt is the nation’s only museum dedicated to historic and contemporary design, with a collection of over 210,000 design objects spanning thirty centuries.
The Cleveland Museum of Art
11150 East Boulevard, Cleveland OH 44106
Wide-ranging collection with particular strengths in ethnic jewellery, as well as Ancient, medieval and later jewellery including American 20th-century jewellery.
Toledo Museum of Art
2445 Monroe Street, Toledo, OH 43620
A broad range of jewellery from classical to contemporary. Particular strength in glass (Toledo was once a glass-making centre) that includes jewellery.
Philadelphia Museum of Art
2600 Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Philadelphia, PA 19130
Large collection with particular emphasis on contemporary American makers.
Carnegie Museum of Natural History
Oakland, 4400 Forbes Ave. Pittsburgh, PA 15213
The Wertz Gallery of Gems and Jewelry. off the Hillman Hall of Minerals and Gems, shows natural specimens crafted into gemstones and jewellery. Approximately 500 gems, crystals, and pieces of jewellery are on display in the gallery’s permanent collection, which is supplemented by special exhibitions.
The Providence Jewelry Museum
Technic Complex, 1 Spectacle Street, Cranston, RI 02910
The Providence Jewelry Museum is the first museum dedicated to the history of American jewellery. It encompasses the largest jewellery archive in the world, including a vast collection of historical artifacts, manuscripts, magazines, tools, samples and more, collected from 150+ jewellery manufacturers over the last 40+ years, and aims to provide enriching historical, educational, and touristic experiences.
RISD. Rhode Island School of Design Museum
20 North Main Street, Providence, RI
Extensive collection of jewellery including Ancient, European and Asian traditional, and 18th-19th century. Also jewellery designs by William Edgar Brigham
374 Metal Museum Drive, Memphis, TN 38106
Originally established by the National Ornamental and Miscellaneous Metals Association, the museum’s mission was 'to display, show and teach the history and achievements made by ornamental metals (not including precious metals) manufacturers and artisans.' Art jewellery has been collected since the museum’s inception regardless of the original focus on industrial and architectural ironwork
Dallas Museum of Art
1717 North Harwood, Dallas, Texas 75201
More than 25,000 works of art from all cultures and time periods spanning 5,000 years of human creativity. Extensive collection of jewellery, including pre-Columbian American, traditional African, Asian and Pacific, Classical and other Ancient, and international modern and contemporary jewellery from the extensive Rose-Asenbaum Collection.
The Houston Museum of Natural Science
5555 Hermann Park Dr, Houston, Texas 77030
Currently numbering over 600 pieces, the McFerrin Fabergé Collection is the largest private collection of Fabergé in the world — a treasure trove of objects reflecting the artistry of the Fabergé firm.
The Museum of Fine Arts
1001 Bissonnet, Houston, Texas 77005
The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, houses an encyclopedic collection of nearly 70,000 works of art created throughout the world, from antiquity to the present, with jewelllery represented in all categories. It is particularly rich in contemporary art jewellery from around the world through the extensive Helen William Drutt Collection.
VMFA. Virginia Museum of Fine Arts
200 N. Arthur Ashe Boulevard, Richmond, VA 23220
Includes important collections of Art Nouveau and later jewellery in the Sydney and Frances Lewis Decoratine Arts Galleries. Also contains the largest public collection of Fabergé and Russian decorative arts in an American museum.
1703 32nd Street, NW, Washington, DC 20007
202-339-6400 ext. 6401
The Dumbarton Oaks Museum is known for its specialised collections of Byzantine and Pre-Columbian art, with an extensive collection of jewellery in both categories.
4155 Linnean Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20008
The Hillwood Museum contains works by Fabergé, and the major collection of jewels owned by Marjorie Merriweather Post, including portraits wearing the jewellery.
National Museum of African Art, 950 Independence Ave., SW, Washington, DC
National Museum of the American Indian, 4th Street and Independence Ave., SW, Washington, DC
National Museum of Natural History, 10th St. and Constitution Ave., SW, Washington, DC
The Smithsonian Institution mineral and gem collection consists of approximately 350,000 mineral specimens and 10,000 gems, making it one of the largest of its kind in the world. It includes many outstanding gems set in jewellery, such as the Hope diamond, and specialist galleries of pearls, diamonds and the Tiffany & Co. Foundation Collection of cut gems.
Racine Art Museum
441 Main Street, Racine, WI 53403
The mission of the Racine Art Museum is to exhibit, collect, preserve, and educate in the contemporary visual arts. The Art Jewelry Collection contains works by established artists as well as those who are emerging, and, in addition to having an international focus, multiple examples by a single artist or artist team are acquired to demonstrate their process of development over a period of time, in line with RAM’s collections policy.