The Mono Indians of North Fork felt that the culture of the Tribe would soon be lost if a place to preserve and protect their artifacts was not built. In 1966 a group of dedicated visionaries planned to create one of the first museums to be solely owned and operated by Mono Indians. In 1970 the museum aquired 1.7 acres of land from the local school district for only $1 and there dreams became a reality. In 1971 the museum opened its doors to the public. The museum is located in the geographical center of California, along the Sierra Vista National Scenic Byway.
The museum recieves no federal, state or city funds for general operating expenses. It is supported by membership fees, donations, gift store sales, and grant funds. The Sierra Mono Indian Museum has been a private, non profit 501(c)3 institution governed by a Board of Directors since May 9, 1966. Visiting the museum offers a glimpse at Mono Indian lifestyles of yesterday and today.
Mission Statement: To exist for the specific and primary purposes of fostering a better public understanding and appreciation of Mono Indian culture, past and present, promoting the cultural development of our community, county, and state, through the recording and collecting of Mono Indian customs, art, and lore, and the establishment and maintenance of a building for the preservation and exhibition of this culture.