The Geological Museum dates from 1859, when the Kingdom’s Geological Commission settled in The Convent of Nossa Senhora de Jesus da Ordem Terceira de S. Francisco. The origin of the museum derives from the specimens collected in the field work of Geological Commissions and later of the Geological Survey of Portugal, the Geological and Mining Institute and currently of the National Laboratory of Energy and Geology.
As pioneers of Portuguese Geology, it is worth to highlight: Carlos Ribeiro, Nery Delgado, Paul Choffat whose work has led to the current reference collections that serve the scientific community.
The arrangement of the collections, as well as the furniture and interior design of the exhibition, reflect the type of museology of the nineteenth-century, from which few examples remain in Europe, therefore being considered by experts as a “Museum of Museums”.
The Geological Museum is part of the Portuguese Museums Network and was classified in 2010 as “Property of Public Interest”, given the “incalculable scientific value of the collections that it preserves and its exhibition space, which is already a reference by itself of nineteenth-century museography, its classification systems and display of specimens, actually a “museum of museums’ of the mineralogical, paleontological and archaeological history, whose recognition and preservation should be safeguarded within the classification of the set”.