Carlos J. Finlay Historical Museum of Sciences
Museums and Art Galleries - Old City of Havana
Regions of Cuba - Travel Guide
The building now occupied by the museum was the venue of the Royal Academy of Medical, Physical and Natural Sciences of Havana as of 1868, and years later it was turned over to the first museum in Cuba, inaugurated on May 19, 1874, under the auspices of the Royal Academy.
The Carlos J. Finlay Historical Museum of Sciences inherited all the collections from these two earlier institutions, as well as the building, declared a National Monument because of the many historic events that took place under its roof, among them Dr. CarlosJ. Finlay's presentation of his thesis announcing to the world the discovery of the vector of yellow fever, and a public presentation by Albert Einstein on the occasion of his visit to Cuba.
Visitors to the museum will learn about the antecedents of Cuban science, the history of the Royal Academy of Sciences of Havana and the role played by members of the medical profession in the wars for independence. The museum also showcases a 19th-century pharmacy, and a scientific laboratory from the same era, as well as providing a synthesis of international science.
Among the museum's other assets are a picture collection and a rich library containing over 95,000 volumes, a historical archive that includes 19th-century manuscripts and Carlos J. Finlay's personal belongings.
Updated August 20, 2000
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