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.

Stay Connected

During the school year, don't miss our weekly #MineralMonday, #WingedWednesday and #FollowerFriday posts on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram (click link buttons below).  And...New this year: the Gillespie's on TikTok!  Check out our "Meet the Staff" video!  Also browse our Throughline Virtual Gallery; this past student project will help you "get your art on" via various creative prompts.

Sign up for our mailing list  gillespie facebook icon gillespie twitter icon instagram logo  Throughline art-in-nature 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.

Museum Hours

The museum will be closed during 2022-23 academic holidays, including Fall Break (October 6-7); Thanksgiving Holiday (November 23-25); Winter Break (December 6-January 9); Spring Holidays (February 28-March 3); and Good Friday (April 7).  Staff may be reached by email ([email protected]) or phone, 386.822.7330.

Admissions

Walk-in Visitors

  • No admissions fee. Donations support educational programming.

Educational Programs (Classes K-12, scouts, home school groups, etc.)

  • Students: $2.50
  • Teachers/Chaperones: No charge

Membership

There are many benefits to a Gillespie Museum membership, including participation in the ASTC Passport Program.  For more information see our Membership page.

Location

Gillespie Museum painting

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.

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.

We have some cool rocks! Can we bring them to the museum to get them identified, or to donate them?

Unfortunately, we are not able to assist with specimen identification or to receive acquisitions of collections or new specimens at this time.  Thank you for your understanding.