The Sociedad Historica de Monte Cristi, Inc. (SHMC) is a Dominican non-profit membership corporation founded in 1997 and governed by a Board of Directors. Spencer B. Meredith, Chairman and President, has been in charge of the project since its inception, working closely with the Dominican community and Government officials, archaeologists, University professors and Museum Directors. The resulting facilities, its collections and assets reflect the combined Interest and support of many persons and groups.

The inspiration to found the SHMC and Monte Cristi Museum and its adjoining facility, the Colegio and Cultural Center, came from Professor Jose M. Cruxent, who was then the Director of the archaeological excavations at La Isabela, where Columbus had established his first settlement on his second voyage to Hispaniola. This settlement was unsuccessful for several reasons and was abandoned after a few years, but it proved a major source of archaeological material, both native Taino and Spanish colonists, which are now housed in a small museum there in La Isabela.

The decision to build a public museum in Monte Cristi resulted from the field work done with Professor Cruxent in the unexplored coastal hills of Monte Cristi Province, not far from La Isabela, and the abundance of Taino sites in that area, with the risk of artifacts being uncovered and sold by the local farmers who were starting to plant the hill sites used by the original Tainos, centuries before.