Wheaton Museum
of World Artifacts

Travel Collection of Novella Wheaton Nied

Your Journey Begins Here!

The Wheaton Museum of World Artifacts is the wide-ranging, personal collection of artifacts and objects, spanning five continents, that Taos native Novella Wheaton Nied collected during 52 years of living and traveling abroad.

For many years Mrs. Nied dreamed of bringing her lovingly assembled collection together under one roof in Taos to share with the community she grew up in. Through creating an enriching space, the founder hopes that local students and residents will be inspired to learn and discover more about our broader world through travel, exchange student programs, languages, work assignments abroad, and be encouraged to seek their own creativity through art awareness.

In 1968 Mrs. Nied, whose family has lived in Taos for many generations, joined the Foreign Service of the U.S. Department of State. She worked in Administration at U.S. Embassies and Missions in Geneva, Manila, Brussels, Cameroon and the Dominican Republic. In Cameroon Mrs. Nied met and married her German husband, Veit Nied, a diplomat with the European Union. Through his diplomatic postings they lived in Tunisia, Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago, Guyana, and the Kingdom of Tonga. Altogether she has traveled to and collected artifacts from 100 countries. The Nieds eventually retired to Ascona, Switzerland where they lived for twelve years. In 2020, following her husband’s death, Mrs. Nied returned to her home in Taos to pursue her dream of setting up and opening the museum.

The Wheaton Museum of World Artifacts will be open one day a week, by appointment, for high school student group tours (from Northern New Mexico County rural schools). The tours will be guided and students will be provided with information about the artifacts relevant to their current studies of international art and culture. Eventually, the Museum will be opened to more schools, and it is hoped days can be set aside for family visits, for special exhibits, for music recitals, and other educational presentations for the public.