British Museum station was opened by the Central London Railway on 30 July 1900 with an entrance at 133 High Holborn.
There had been ideas for an underground passageway between British Museum and Holborn (100 metres away and open in 1906) but tunnelling would have been complex. A proposal to enlarge the tunnels under High Holborn to create new platforms at Holborn station for the Central and to abandon the British Museum station was originally included in a private bill submitted to parliament as early as November 1913. The First World War prevented any work taking place. The works were eventually carried out as part of the modernisation of Holborn station at the beginning of the 1930s when escalators were installed. British Museum station was closed on 24 September 1933, with the new platforms at Holborn opening the following day.
British Museum station was subsequently used up to the 1960s as a military administrative office and emergency command post, but the surface station building was demolished in 1989.
The station was reputed to be haunted by the ghost of the daughter of an Egyptian Pharaoh called Amen-ra which would appear and scream so loudly that the noise would carry down the tunnels to adjoining stations.