The Museum stores the minerals which were used by Dmitri Mendeleev and later researchers to produce new chemical elements.
The collection of diamonds and associate minerals is from Kimberley, South Africa, and had been acquired by Ernst Hofmann in the 19th century. It enabled scientists to develop in the Department of Mineralogy of Leningrad University a method of spotting diamonds by associate minerals. Thanks to this method, the first primary diamond deposit in the USSR was discovered.
The Museum comprises over 30,000 samples (870 types of minerals). They are included into the following collections: the systematic collection (by type of mineral); memorial collections (Dmitri Mendeleev, Ernst Hofmann, Archbishop Nilus and others); the collection of meteorites; the collection of photos and illustrations; the collection of manuscripts and field research materials; and the collection of reference and supplementary literature.