The Blackhawk Museums (founded in 1988) is a group of museums in Danville, California, best known for its important collection of classic, rare and unique automobiles. The museum is a non-profit 501(c)3 private operating foundation.
The museum is home to about ninety classic cars. It also houses a display showing the work of the Wheelchair Foundation. The facility is located within the Blackhawk Plaza shopping center and is affiliated with the Smithsonian Affiliations program.
Founded in 1982 by a partnership between benefactor Ken Behring and Don Williams, the Blackhawk Automotive Museum opened its doors in August 1988. The museum was established to ensure that significant automotive treasures were exhibited for public enjoyment and educational enrichment. The architect based in Hacienda, Doug Dahlin, is responsible for the design of the Auto-museum.
One of the most unusual features of the museum is the 1924 Hispano-Suiza H6C with a tulipwood body. Over the years, the museum also houses the 1962 John F. Kennedy Limousine and the Chinese Hongqi Limousine, the first Chinese-made automobile to be imported to the United States.
Several changing exhibitions, representing the topics of transport, culture and science related to our society, have been hosted in various galleries and reception areas throughout the museum. Current exhibitions include a selection of American jukeboxes from the golden age of the jukebox and a display of antique gas pumps. Since 2000, the Blackhawk Automotive Museum has been a member of the Smithsonian Institution and has joined forces to bring together a variety of cultural exhibitions, historical artifacts and major automobiles from across the United States.
The museum is a partner in the organization of the local Concours d'Elegance event, which presents some of the museum's collection among the usual entrants. In February 2015, the Blackhawk Museum added a permanent collection of 19th-century North American artifacts called The Old West Spirit, featuring both the settler and Native American stories of North America's European expansion in the 1800s.
The museum features The Old West Spirit which is dedicated to presenting a balanced narrative of both Native Americans and American settlers — depicting their challenges, their successes and failures, their way of life. These inspiring stories make up the larger American Story, and the Blackhawk Museum wants to educate and entertain, while preserving these important stories for future generations.
In addition, The Into China Gallery of the museum allows visitors to experience some of the finest handcrafted masterpieces that reflect the vast scale of the country and capture the essence of all that embodies China, past and present culturally. This permanent exhibition is open all year round and includes general admission to the Museum.
This amazing must-see site is conveniently located near some of Blackhawk’s other top attractions. Make sure to check them out on your next visit:
Blackhawk Country Club
Sycamore Valley Regional Open Space Preserve
Las Trampas Regional Wilderness Park
Morgan Territory Regional Preserve
Diablo Vista Park
Red Willow Park
After visiting these lovely attractions make sure to stop by and say “Hello” to us at our downtown Danville location, DPG Pavers Danville Location on 4115 Blackhawk Plaza Circle!