Capital Campaign

Capital Campaign to Achieve Sustainability

To be sustainable, the Museum of Idaho must develop a new source of income.

The Museum of Idaho receives only 4.74% of funding from government sources. Other U.S. museums receive an average of 35.50% of funding from the Government. The Museum of Idaho depends more on ticket and store sales than other museums, however, ticket and store sales are not a reliable source of income.

For questions please contact Nick Gailey, Director of Development. 208-522-1400 ex. 3013

The current building is inadequate to sustain the traveling exhibit program.

In the current building, the amount of space available for the storage of crates, cases and other exhibit items is 0 square feet. The amount of space for unpacking and prepping artifacts for display is 0 square feet. The workspace available to repair and build exhibit items is 0 square feet.

There are over 23,000 objects not displayed because of limited space. These objects include:

  • 14 ft. tall Columbian Mammoth
  • The Keefer Room
  • Giant Ground Sloth skeleton

We have not addressed important topics that shaped Idaho history such as mining, agriculture, immigration, the formation of state and territory, geology and the Idaho ecosystem. We have inadequately explored Idaho’s prehistory, native cultures, trappers and early explorers and natural history.


Because of these issues the Museum of Idaho has embarked on a path that will lead to sustainability and allow the museum to continue hosting world-class exhibitions.

This will be accomplished through the successful development of the Museum of Idaho’s Capital Campaign that will address two major goals to achieve a sustainable institution.

  1. The development of an endowment–type sustainability fund. Immediate goal: $3 million would provide $150,000 – $210,000 in annual earnings for the Museum of Idaho budget creating a stable funding source. Long term goal: $5 million.
  1. An addition/expansion to the Museum of Idaho. The current museum is inadequate to sustain the traveling exhibit program, display Idaho exhibits properly and maintain and protect the 23,000 objects within the museum’s collection. An addition/expansion to the museum would address all of the above listed concerns.

Estimated cost of the addition/expansion:  $3 million | Raised to date: $2.3 million

Capital Campaign

Goal Total:  $6 million | Raised to date: $4.1 million

Make a tax-deductible gift to the Museum of Idaho and help ensure the sustainability of “Our” museum. Donate Now.

The Museum of Idaho has received a $500,000 Challenge Grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH). All contributions designated for the expansion will be used to match and to be expended for the approved purposes of this grant.