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A Brief HIstory
While the first museum for Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory (now Los Alamos National Laboratory) appeared in 1954 in an old ice house on the banks of Ashley Pond, its collection contained classified materials, and it was not open to the general public. The Laboratory’s need for a museum that showcased unclassified objects and welcomed all visitors was realized in 1963 with the opening of its Laboratory Museum and Science Hall, the predecessor for today’s Bradbury Science Museum.
With a growing collection and thousands of visitors, the Museum and Science Hall moved to a larger site at the Laboratory’s Technical Area 3 (TA-3) in 1965. Visitors enjoyed exhibits for all ages, such as the beloved “Pinocchio,” a simulated chain reaction that used table-tennis balls. In 1970, the museum was renamed in honor of the Laboratory’s longest-serving director, Norris E. Bradbury.
In 1993, the Bradbury Science Museum moved to its current location at 1450 Central Avenue. Free and open to the public, today the museum creates and provides interactive exhibits and videos that explore the origin of the Lab’s capabilities developed during the Manhattan Project and highlight the Laboratory’s current research and innovations.