Manchester Museum

Manchester, United Kingdom

Manchester Museum


Manchester Museum is a museum displaying works of archaeology, anthropology and natural history and is owned by the University of Manchester, in England. Sited on Oxford Road (A34) at the heart of the university's group of neo-Gothic buildings, it provides access to about 4.5 million items from every continent. It is the UK's largest university museum and serves both as a major visitor attraction and as a resource for academic research and teaching. It has around 430,000 visitors each year.

The museum's first collections were assembled by the Manchester Society of Natural History formed in 1821 with the purchase of the collection of John Leigh Philips. The society established a museum in Peter Street, Manchester, on a site later occupied by the Young Men's Christian Association, in 1835. In 1850 the collections of the Manchester Geological Society (founded 1838) were added. By the 1860s both societies encountered financial difficulties and, on the advice of the evolutionary biologist Thomas Huxley, Owens College (now the University of Manchester) accepted responsibility for the collections in 1867. The museum in Peter Street was sold in 1875 after Owens College moved to new buildings in Oxford Street.

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