Musée Mécanique - a famous museum in San Francisco


Musée Mécanique - a famous museum in San Francisco

Known as one of the most popular museums all over the world, the Musée Mécanique is a historical and spiritual museum in San Francisco. With its unique collections, the museum has attracted more than thousands of visitors every year. If tourists are planning a trip to San Francisco, let visit this famous museum of the city of San Francisco.

Musée Mécanique

Musée Mécanique entrance

At the beginning, the museum was located in Playland at the Beach, later, it was moved to the Cliff House in the 1960s. However, in 2002, the owner had to change the museum's position to the recent favorable situation in the beautiful tourist attraction Fisherman’s Wharf area.

Musée Mécanique

Musée Mécanique with its favorable position

Musée Mécanique was founded by Edward Galland Zelinsky in 1972. When Edward was 11 years old, he began his collection. First, he went to play the Bingo game in the Ellis Theatre and won a prize which was five quarts of motor oil. Then, he sold it to his piano teacher. Edward spent 5 cents to buy a penny skill game. If his family and friends wanted to play, they must put the pennies in the machine. He saved the pennies in the machine and bought more facilities.

Musée Mécanique

The game machine in the museum

At that time, he was interested in a slot machine and bought it with the price of $25, after that he sold it for $200. That was the way Edward Galland Zelinsky developed his collection. Today, the slot machine is one of the unique items in the museum.

Musée Mécanique

Do arm wrestling with the guy princess diaries

Edward Galland Zelinsky continued to collect after the World War II; he bought eight picture machines for the cost of $10 each product. Firstly, the machines worked for just a penny, later, he upgraded them to a nickel, a dime and then a quarter making the players increased triple. Another time in Oakland in 1946, he spent $200 to buy a Seeburg piano having a xylophone and mandolin from the Mills Novelty Company. At first, the piano could not work, after many time repaired it, the piano could play until now.

Musée Mécanique

The aged Seeburg piano

One of the most people who trade with Edward Galland Zelinsky was George Whitney. They exchanged many items from the music boxes to the piano. Later, Zelinsky traded successfully his 1904 Franklin with Whitney to got a steam-powered motorcycle. Nowadays, the Steam Flyer which is worth $250,000 is one of the best-restored steam motorcycles and considered the only one all over the world and put in the Musée Mécanique.

Musée Mécanique

The most worth steam-powered motorcycle in the world

Most of Zelinsky’s machines are still maintained their function and appearance, incredibly, they work very well. As a result, tourists should bring some money to buy pennies (usually from 25 to 50 cents) and try to play the interesting game machines. Visitors may immerse in the exciting games that they have never play, especially this place is the kid's heaven, but please keep in mind that everybody should be gentle with these antique machines.

Musée Mécanique

The antique game machine in the museum

The machines in the Musée Mécanique reflect the history of San Francisco. The couples showed in the Royal Court diorama are the characteristic images in Pan Pacific Exposition in 1915. Besides, the scary automaton with the creepy laughing named Laffing Sal is a funny part.

Musée Mécanique

The scary Laffing Sal with its laugh

Along with the entertainment machines, the outstanding set of Edward Galland Zelinsky also includes various awesome items. The old peep having hula dancers, cartomancers reading tarot or Black and white photographs make the significant contribution to the collection. Another amazing thing is a giant diorama at the center of the Musée Mécanique museum. The diorama consists of more than 100 people and their actions through which travelers can know more about the American life in the past.

Musée Mécanique

The fortune teller reading tarot

Moreover, the museum also has several artworks made of toothpicks which created by the prisoners at Alcatraz.

Musée Mécanique

The stunning creative toothpick artwork

Tourists can spend time to visit and admire the impressive exhibitions including orchestrions, aged piano or huge diorama. This is also a perfect destination for adults as well as children to enjoy the leisure and have the wonderful memories when playing the games with your family and friends.

Musée Mécanique

Tourists interested in an item

The current owner of the museum is Dan Zelinsky who is the son of the founder - Edward Galland Zelinsky. The Musée Mécanique is a non-profit museum which provides a variety of antique collection. Especially, it is free for access to the museum. In another world, the Musée Mécanique is one of the must-visit places that visitors should come when traveling to San Francisco.

  • Address: Pier 45 at the end of Taylor Street, Fisherman's Wharf, San Francisco, CA 94133.
  • Phone number: (415) 346-2000.
  • Open time: 10 am to 8 pm daily (including holidays).


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