The JHU Collections Web is a virtual museum of university collections curated by undergraduates in the Program in Museums and Society. It offers encounters with select artifacts drawn from across the Johns Hopkins University’s campuses, their academic departments, libraries, archives, and museums, and explores the connections between them.

We invite you to direct your own journey through our site. Pick an object from our collections wall, or start with the connections represented by our tag cloud and data web. Enjoy a more guided experience by exploring the featured tour below.

The material on this site was developed by undergraduates from the Program in Museums and Society. The site is made possible through the generous support of a Social Sciences Grant from the Center for Educational Resources

University Collections

The collection, reproduction and display of objects is closely intertwined with the history, approaches and taxonomies of our academic disciplines. Yet collections do more than reflect the professional work of the university; they also reveal the social, intellectual and even personal lives of its faculty, staff, students, neighbors and friends. In turn, the material traces and remnants of university collecting shape our academic culture and its memory.

Institutional collecting at Hopkins started with books for a new classroom model: the research seminar, and with an archaeological collection established in 1882 as a laboratory for the study of archaeology, classics and art. University collections expanded in 1900 with a collection of Judaica donated for the purposes of exhibition, research, and teaching. The founding of the Alan M. Chesney Medical Archives in 1978 brought a new type of collecting activity to Hopkins. The archives include documents and artifacts that represent the work and people of the Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions.

Today, the university also operates two historic house museums. Homewood, donated in 1902 with the property that is now the Homewood campus, became a museum in 1987, and the Baltimore Garrett family’s Evergreen home, given in 1942, has been a museum and library since 1990. Beyond these formal settings, Hopkins’ academic departments have made, collected and preserved objects, tools and specimens throughout the university’s history.