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The Pittsburg Historical Society ‘s founders could never have envisaged such a grand museum as we have at 515 Railroad Avenue. The community that came together for a common reason, preserving Pittsburgh’s heritage, had deep roots in this vibrant river town and wanted generations to learn about its people and evolution through ranching, farming, fishing, canning, military base and the vast factories that came here because of its location on the river (water and transportation), railroads and people who were willing to work. They began with exhibits temporarily in various places without their own rooms, including the Junta house on Black Diamond Street. This small but hardy party, recognized by the Pittsburg Chamber of Commerce on October 18, 1961, was made up of the pioneer family Buchanan, Norma Daly, the families O’Hara and Davi, Marie Harper, the Milton Killoughs, and Theresa Gatto Freed.

Needing to find some permanent space, the founders purchased an old Chevron clubhouse that was relocated to the outskirts of City Park near Railroad Avenue where their collection expanded to the point of excess for several years. The closed Southern Pacific Railroad Depot was arranged for securement in the 1990s. The building was completely destroyed by fire on the eve preceding ownership transfer. The group, 35 years old at the time, began to seek other property. Then-President Pat Firpo and then Curator Marti Aiello had their sights on the vacant post-dispatch building in Pittsburg. They partnered with family Lesher and purchased the house back in 1997.

Because of their era, which was designed for Coast County Gas & Electric in 1926 and then merged with Pacific Gas and Electric Company, they were unable to open the new building to the public until it had been retrofitted for earthquake safety. The building was remodeled and the grand opening was held in 2003, thanks to grants from the City of Pittsburg, local businesses, and others, and under the guidance of Joseph Barraco, the architect and former president of the society.

Today the museum hosts a large collection of artifacts, historical photos, a well-organized library of papers, maps, and reference books.

By Geraoma - Own work, Public Domain,
By Geraoma – Own work, Public Domain,

This amazing landmark in Pittsburg, California is located near some other must-see places of interest:

  • Black Diamond Mines Regional Preserve
  • Small World Park
  • Buchanan Park 
  • Port Chicago Naval Magazine National Memorial
  • Dow Wetlands Preserve
  • Highlands Ranch Park
  • Central Park
  • Stoneman Trailhead

All of these wonderful landmarks are located just a short distance from our location at 1091 Shary Circle in Concord, California! Stop by for a visit anytime!