Founded and designed by Luther Eskijian, himself a child survivor of the Armenian Genocide, the museum was opened in 1996 near the Ararat Home of Los Angeles, a senior care facility that opened in 1949. The museum houses historical maps, coins, crafts, medals, sketches, musical instruments and a library. While the Armenian Genocide is its focus, the museum also pays tribute to Armenian-Americans who are or have served in the U.S. Armed Forces, and to contemporary writers, such as William Saroyan.
From the museum website:
The Ararat-Eskijian Museum was created to preserve our Armenian culture and historical treasures for generations to come. It is our desire that Armenian Americans and Armenians of the Diaspora who visit the Museum will understand and appreciate the hardships, sacrifices, and achievements of their ancestors. To illustrate this, the Museum includes examples of art, architecture, literature, numismatics, maps and documents relating to the Armenian Genocide of 1915. The Genocide devastated our people and homeland, but did not destroy our love for God, our spirit, nor our desire to achieve and excel.
The Ararat-Eskijian Museum belongs to all Armenians. It is a cultural center for the performing arts, lectures, and special displays. It offers a unique opportunity for research and welcomes donation of family heirlooms, documents, books and other artifacts to safeguard them for future generations.
The visual approach to the Museum is from the courtyard, framed by wrought iron railings in an ancient Armenian design and adorned by the stately bronze statue of "Mother Armenia Rising Out of the Ashes," a memorial dedicated to those who perished or narrowly escaped death in the 1915 Genocide. Behind the statue is a stained glass window depicting the ruins of ancient Armenian architecture. The entrance of the Museum offers an invitation for visitors to sign in and enter a place that harbors treasures of Armenia's rich past.
Luther Eskijian, Founder
15105 Mission Hills Rd., Mission Hills
The museum is usually open on Saturdays and Sundays or by appointment. Call 818-838-4862 for more information.