Minerals and More at the Gillespie Museum
About the Museum
An Earth Science Museum in a Natural Setting
Founded in 1958, the Gillespie Museum has been a center for earth and environmental science education on campus and in the community for six decades. (View our 60th Anniversary Slideshow for a history in photos and documents.) The museum houses an historic mineral collection, with nearly a thousand of its 15,000 specimens on display in changing exhibits. There are also small galleries devoted to natural history collecting, Florida ecosystems, fluorescent minerals, volcanism and the rock cycle. The layout of the Gillespie Museum with current exhibits can be viewed in this Map and Guide.
The grounds of the museum and of the adjacent Rinker Environmental Learning Center (RELC) provide outdoor classrooms, including a well-established Native Florida Plant Landscape, the Hatter Harvest Garden, Stetson Beekeeping, and the Volusia Sandhill Ecosystem, Teaching Landscape (an urban restoration in progress).
Stetson faculty and undergraduates contribute to museum programming (as student staff, through class projects, during outreach programming and in place-based research). The museum has active memberships in the Association of Science and Technology Centers (ASTC) and partnerships with Florida Native Plant Society, Florida Wildflower Foundation, Florida Geographic Alliance, and is a Volusia County ECHO site.
During the school year, don't miss our weekly #MineralMonday, #WildflowerWednesday, and #FloridaFriday posts on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram (click link buttons below). Receive up-to-date details on projects and programs from the museum and sandhill, plus creative prompts for artwork on our student-run, art-in-nature Throughline Virtual Gallery.
Sign Up for our Mailing List! You'll receive weekly email posts from the museum, with updates and information on our evolving selection of online resources and activities, on unique engagement opportunities here and beyond, and on our latest projects and programs exploring the natural world both inside and outside the museum walls.
Tuesday through Friday: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. (The museum is occasionally open weekday evenings for special events and programs, and Saturdays from 10 a.m. to noon for Science Saturday; 2021-2022 special events tbd, depending on current health conditions. Join our mailing list to stay updated!)
Safer Stetson protocols will be in place for all museum visitors, including wearing masks and maintaining social distance.
The museum will be closed during 2021-22 academic holidays, including Fall Break (September 30-October 1); Thanksgiving Weekend (November 24-26); Winter Break (December 6-January 10); Spring Holidays (February 28-March 4); and Good Friday (April 15). Staff may be reached by email ([email protected]) or phone, 386.822.7330.
- No admissions fee. Donations support educational programming.
Educational Programs (Classes K-12, scouts, home school groups, etc.)
- Students: $2.50
- Teachers/Chaperones: No charge
The Gillespie Museum and the Rinker Environmental Learning Center are located at the southeast corner of Stetson University's DeLand Campus, at the intersection of Amelia and East Michigan Avenues. To find the most current directions to the Gillespie Museum, refer to this Google Maps link, and use our location as your destination.
- Physical address: 234 E. Michigan Ave., DeLand, FL 32723
- Mailing address: Gillespie Museum
Stetson University, Unit 8403
421 N. Woodland Blvd.
DeLand, FL 32723
Frequently Asked Questions
I am visiting the area with my family and would like to visit the museum. Do I need an appointment to visit?
If you are visiting during the normal school semester (January through April and August through December), you do not need an appointment. The museum staff are available September through May, Tuesdays through Fridays, during normal operating hours and would be glad to assist you. There are a number of school groups that visit during this time as well, so don't be surprised to see 30 to 60 students participating in the museum's educational programs!
I have a group of seniors who would like to tour the facility (10 or more). Do we have to call to let you know when we are coming?
Yes. Due to the high demand for tours and the schedule of our student staff, it would be best to call and set up an appointment so that we can add your group to our calendar and ensure a staff member will be here to give you a tour.
My child has a rock collection and needs assistance identifying them. Can we bring them to the museum?
We do assist with the identification of rocks and minerals. For children, it would be best to bring them during one of our Science Saturdays. Others needing assistance will be asked to complete a description form and leave the specimens with us for five to seven working days. We can identify up to five specimens at a time for a small fee of $5.