In recent years, the federal government’s Institute for Museum and Library Services has engaged in a major effort to document the population of museums in the U.S. The IMLS dataset includes all manner of museums – of art, public history, natural history, and many other museums subsectors, including those that are private (commercial and nonprofit) and public, i.e., operated by a government body . While other museum databases have been prepared by private sector organizations, the IMLS data represent the most comprehensive tally of museums . It includes about 35,000 individual museums available to U.S. residents

This measure represents the number of those museums located in every county for every 100,000 county residents.

Additional Information: Counties with indicator value = 2,973. Average county indicator value = 26.3. Median county indicator value = 15.8.


Fast Facts from the Arts Index

The nonprofit arts grow – despite a recession!

The number of nonprofit arts organizations has grown annually, reaching 113,000 in 2010. In the past decade, nonprofit arts organizations grew 49% (76,000 to 113,000), a greater rate than all nonprofit organizations, which grew 32% (1.2 million to 1.6 million).