The museum provides a meaningful learning environment for people of all ages, and showcases the unique importance of the region in shaping the history of California and the nation in ways that enrich lives and shape a better future. The museum has been collecting real pieces of California history since 1928. Thousands of historical and cultural artifacts are displayed in more than 56 historic buildings on 16 beautifully landscaped acres. Treasures such as a one room school, the general store, jail, oil derrick, and seven historic homes join Native American exhibits, the Bakersfield Sound, mining, agriculture and railroad exhibits for visitor enjoyment. From California’s Gold Rush, through its settlement and development, to the crucial oil industry of today, the state’s rich heritage can be experienced in one convenient and central location.