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An 82-year Old Volunteer + TikTok = The World’s Most Popular Museum

An 82-year Old Volunteer + TikTok = The World’s Most Popular Museum

Amid a continuing pandemic, while doors remained closed and travel is paused, the Sacramento History Museum has become a sensation on TikTok. The museum in California’s state capital currently ranks as the highest followed museum on the popular social media platform, from having 10,000 followers in late December to over 500,000 in just five weeks, and as of today the Museum now has more than 568,500 followers and 5million likes on TikTok.

The Sacramento History Museum only recently began engaging on TikTok and just before Christmas posted what turned out to be a wildly popular video of 82-year-old volunteer docent Howard Hatch working away in the Museum’s print shop. A follow up video from Howard in January further elevated his popularity on TikTok, becoming even more popular with over 15 million views to date. In fact, in the last week alone, the video had 3.7 million views.

@sachistorymuseum

We think it’s the power of Howard #sachistorymuseum #printingpress #printing #sacramento #asmr #fyp #museum #typography #myroutine #learnontiktok

♬ original sound – Sacramento History Museum

“During the pandemic, our dedicated staff have been trying to identify innovative new ways to raise awareness in an effort to keep our Museum top-of-mind and motivate engagement,” said Delta Pick Mello, Executive Director of the Sacramento History Museum & Sacramento History Alliance. “Of course, becoming a TikTok sensation is a bit inexplicable and wasn’t something we planned or expected. With that said, we are enjoying the newfound fame and are absolutely thrilled to introduce the Museum to a worldwide audience in a fun and exciting new way.”

The Sacramento History Museum is a reproduction of the 1854 City Hall and Waterworks building, which sat on the current site, and is located in the heart of Historic Old Sacramento next to the beautiful Sacramento River. The museum delves into the rich and diverse history of California’s state capital as a Gold Rush railroad hub, located just two hours north-east of San Francisco.

With plenty of virtual activations available on an ongoing basis, including the Museum’s Homemade History activities, the community is encouraged to follow the Sacramento History Museum on TikTok (@SacHistoryMuseum) and engage on other social media platforms as well.

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Fionn Davenport is the editor-in-chief of the ITTN group, including ITTN and ITTN Ireland. He's one of Ireland's best-known travel journalists and writers, with nearly 30 years' experience writing guidebooks for Lonely Planet and others.

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