The origin of Cadiz Museum begins with the Confiscation of Mendizábal in 1835 and with the deposit in the Academy of Fine Arts of the city of a series of paintings from various exclaustrated convents. Among these works was the Zurbarán series from the Cartuja de Jerez de la Frontera. Meanwhile, around the Academy of Fine Arts, throughout the nineteenth century, a core of works from the flourishing Cádiz school of painting was brought together, with the final echoes of neoclassicism, romanticism, costumbrismo and the history picture.
The chance finding in 1887 of the male Phoenician anthropoid sarcophagus on the grounds of the current Astilleros de Cádiz was the starting point of the archaeological collection. The Archeology section of the museum is divided by rooms, where the evolution of the province of Cádiz from prehistoric times, including the Phoenician – Punic Gadir and even the Roman Gades and Baelo Claudia are collected. In addition to the impressive Phoenician anthropoid sarcophagi, the funerary objects and Punic and Phoenician grave goods recovered in Cádiz and the Melkart – Hercules sanctuary in Sancti Petri and in the village of Doña Blanca in the Port of Santa stand out in this section. María, as well as the Roman remains from Cádiz, Medina Sidonia, Sancti Petri and Baelo Claudia, among which the collection of statues stands out for its spectacular nature.
The Fine Arts section is also divided by rooms, and involves a journey through painting from the 16th century to the present day. Notable among them are the Flemish, Italian and Spanish works of the sixteenth century, the works made by Zurbarán for the Cartuja de Jerez between 1637 and 1639, different works of Murillo and his disciples within the Baroque collection or a work by Joan Miró within the Contemporary Art section.
Pinillos House is a building near the Museum and attached to it. The adaptation of this property and its incorporation into Cadiz Museum is for Cádiz the provision of a new and modern space for cultural use, with about 1600 m2 of floor space. The Museum of Cádiz opens the doors of this new building to the public thanks to the generous donation of Doña Carmen Martínez de Pinillos y Toro, who in 2004, bequeathed her home for the expansion of the Museum. In 2009 the actions for the rehabilitation of housing began, of great patrimonial value for being an excellent example of bourgeois house of principles of the XVIII.