Last updated: 10/31/2020
Window Rock, Arizona
Street Address
Hwy 264 and Post Office Loop Rd.
Window Rock, AZ 86515
Mailing Address
P.O. Box 1840
Window Rock, AZ 86515
Admissions
Entrance to the galleries and festivals is Always Free
Staff
Description

The Navajo Nation Museum has extensive holdings of art, ethnographic, archaeological, and archival materials. Our archives collection includes over 40,000 photographs as well as a wide variety of documents, recordings, motion picture film, and videos. The archives are heavily used by authors, researchers, and publishers as a source for historical photographs.

We collect anything that helps document the culture and history of the Navajo people, including selected materials from Tribal and non-Indian neighbors. Most of the collections are available for on-site study and exhibit loan.

The museum maintains a very active and professional exhibition program, most of which is produced in-house. In its new venue, most exhibitions have tended to highlight the work of Navajo artists in various media, including weavings. These art-oriented exhibitions are interspersed with historical and cultural exhibits. A comprehensive, large scale, long-term exhibition on Navajo Culture and History is currently being researched and scripted prior to design and construction over the next few years.

History

The museum was established in 1961, but for most of its history remained a very small entity, not much more than a one-person, one-room operation which was periodically moved from one inadequate space to another. In 1998, the Museum was moved into a recently-built 54,000 square foot contemporary purpose-built building which it shares with the Navajo Nation Library and Research collection. As part of this rebirth, the Navajo Nation Council authorized a comprehensive staff list and a major increase in budget to support the staff and new operations. In 1999, the Museum took over management of the entire building, for its own operations, those of the Library, and meeting/conference facilities.

Artifact Collections

The Navajo Nation Museum has extensive holdings of art, ethnographic, archaeological, and archival materials. Our archives collection includes over 40,000 photographs as well as a wide variety of documents, recordings, motion picture film, and videos. The archives are heavily used by authors, researchers, and publishers as a source for historical photographs.
We collect anything that helps document the culture and history of the Navajo people, including selected materials from Tribal and non-Indian neighbors. Most of the collections are available for on-site study and exhibit loan.

Research Collections

Navajo textiles, archaeology, ethnography, 2 and 2-D art. Archives of over 40,000 photographs plus a wide range of ancillary materials.

Educational Programs

The Museum's education program is implemented by our Education Curator and Navajo Cultural Specialist. They present a diverse array of material, including gallery/exhibit tours, presentations on Navajo culture for small or large groups, in-house presentations to student groups, and in-school presentations for K-12 classes, teachers, and parents. The Museum's cultural education activities are one of the most important programs on the Reservation for teaching Navajo culture to youth.

Governance

A unit of the Navajo Nation, the Museum is under the Navajo Nation Historic Preservation Dept.

Library

Access: Students, Scholars, Staff Only

Appointment required: Yes

Publications

To date, publications have been produced sporadically, and usually consist of exhibit catalogues of varying complexity.

ADA

Wheelchair Accessible

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MUSEUM CONFERENCES
Tuesday, September 6 - Friday, September 9, 2022 — Portland, Oregon
WMA 2022 Annual Meeting in partnership with the Oregon Museums Association
Portland, Oregon
Wednesday, September 14 - Friday, September 16, 2022 — Enid, Oklahoma
2022 Oklahoma Museum Conference
Enid, Oklahoma
Wednesday, September 14 - Saturday, September 17, 2022 — Buffalo, New York
American Association for State and Local History 2022 On-site and Virual Conferences
Buffalo, New York
Thursday, October 6 - Sunday, October 9, 2022 — Portland, Oregon
2022 Oregon Annual Conference, co-hosted with Western Museums Association
Portland, Oregon
Monday, October 24 - Wednesday, October 26, 2022 — Rogers, Arkansas
SouthEastern Museum Conference 2022 ANNUAL MEETING
Rogers, Arkansas
Tuesday, October 25 - Thursday, October 27, 2022 — Temecula, California
2022 International Conference of Indigenous Archives, Libraries, and Museums
Temecula, California
Friday, June 23 - Thursday, June 29, 2023 — ,
2023 American Library Association Annual Conference & Exhibition in Chicago
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