The mission of the Venice Museum & Archives (VMA) is to collect and preserve historical and archaeological material relating to Venice and the communities of Nokomis, Laurel and Osprey, whose histories have all been interwoven from 1867 to the present time.
VMA has a collection of 30,000+ photographs, archives, objects, and publications pertaining to area history and is housed in the historic 1927 Triangle Inn building. The museum engages the public in local history through changing and permanent exhibits, tours of the Triangle Inn, special events, newsletters, social media, as well as onsite and offsite educational outreach programs to youth and adults. Additional services offered also include assisting the public with research requests and assisting with image request orders. The museum’s gift shop offers books, DVDs and other merchandise pertaining to local history available for purchase. LEARN MORE ABOUT THE VMA
In honor of International Museum Day, three historic sites invited families to come explore the rich historical resources these institutions provide to the community. In keeping with this year’s theme of “Museums as Cultural Hubs: The Future of Tradition,” the Venice Museum & Archives, Lord-Higel House, and 1927 Historic Venice Train Depot are reaching out to area residents and families outside of the historic area of Venice so they can discover these hubs of culture in our city.
This free event took place on Saturday, May 18th. A free trolley shuttle ran continuously between the three sites, allowing visitors to start at any site and get on and off to visit each museum. The Venice Museum & Archives offered mini golf, crafts, photo opportunities, and a shark rodeo. Venice Heritage, Inc., gave tours of the Lord-Higel House and had period games and toys for kids to play. The Venice Area Historical Society unveiled their new circus arena model, offered a scavenger hunt, model trains, and tours of the depot.
The Venice Museum & Archives, Venice Heritage, Inc., and the Venice Area Historical Society wish to thank the Gulf Coast Community Foundation and the Venice Gondolier for making this event free and open to the public.
The City of Venice (COV) is the parent organization of the VMA. Museum staff are COV employees under the Department of Historical Resources. The Venice City Council is the governing authority for the VMA with legal and fiduciary responsibility for the museum and for approving museum policy and its annual budget.
Organized through the Friends of the Venice Library, on May 10, 1974, the first Historical Committee meeting in Venice, Florida was held. The Historical Collection was established in 1975 by the committee and was originally stored in a closet at the downtown Venice Library branch. In 1976 the name Venice Area Historical Collection was adopted for the collection. The City of Venice established the Venice Historical Committee in 1982.
By ordinance in 1987, the City of Venice created the Venice Historical Commission and the position of Director of Historical Resources, a volunteer position at that time. The city’s Planning Department provided technical and clerical support for both the commission and the director. The jurisdiction of the commission for the “Venice area” was defined as being from Blackburn Road in Osprey South to Manasota Key.
A Custody Agreement was signed in 1988 between the Friends of the Library and the City of Venice for the COV to “maintain custody of all pieces forming a part of the historical collection owned by the Friends of the Library pertaining to the City of Venice and its history.”
In July 1991 the Venice Area Historical Collection was moved to a storage space on the first floor of the newly renovated City Hall in downtown Venice. That same year, the name of the collection was officially changed to the Venice Archives and Area Historical Collection (VAAHC).
The collection was moved in September 1996 to the restored and renovated historic 1927 building known as the Triangle Inn. The name of the Venice Archives and Area Historical Collection was changed to the Venice Museum & Archives in 2012.