The roots of the foundation date back to 1954. By then Piet Hessel had become interested in shells. The first collecting trips by bicycle from Utrecht to Katwijk (at the west coast of the Netherlands) did not yield much. During these first years not more than a small private collection existed.
From 1968 onwards fossils were collected too. Since then we have made hundreds of collecting trips. We also purchased a lot of recent shells. A small museum developed.
From April 1989 onwards the director has had a full-time job (unpaid) organising and expanding the collections of the museum.
On February 4th 1991 the "Stichting Schepsel Schelp" was founded and recorded at notary's office. This foundation is privately funded.
From May 19th 1992 onwards the foundation was recognised by the Dutch Department of Treasury as an institution for the general good and a non-profit organization (ANBI). Donations and gifts to the foundation are therefore deductible from income tax. In 2012 the foundation was recognised to be an ANBI with cultural status. Therefore gifts gained a special status and the deductability may be multiplied with a factor of 1,25.
To day our collections are very extensive and very good documented. We also have a large site on the internet.
In appreciation of our museum and website our former chairman received in 2017 a royal decoration.
We are recorded at the Chamber of Commerce in Utrecht (number 41184657) The Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF) registered our foundation under its alias "International Fossil Shell Museum" in the Global Biodiversity Resources Discovery System (GBRDS, under development) under the code AMadk6LPCEF
In 2009 we donated a large collection of recent shells to the University of Amsterdam (20.405 numbers). This material is now included in the collections of the Netherlands Centre for Biodiversity "Naturalis" in Leiden.
We donated a collection of fossil shells of the Plio/Pleistocene of Florida to the Museum of Natural-History Rotterdam (NMR) in 2010. In 2011 our Pleistocene shells of Egypt were donated to them as well.
In 2015 we donated nearly 8.000 lots of Pliocene shells to "Naturalis". In future we will donate several other parts of our collection to them as well. We then signed an agreement to donate more collectionparts to them in future.