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History Museums and Living History Areas

Museums dedicated to the preservation and presentation of history or areas with authentic buildings and historically accurate reproductions.


'Iolani Palace

Honolulu, Honolulu County, Hawaii, 96813
'Iolani Palace opened to the public in 1978 as a house museum after structural restoration of the building.


Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum

Springfield, Sangamon County, Illinois, 62701
This museum usually exhibits many original artifacts related to Lincoln like the original hand written Gettysburg Address, a signed Emancipation Proclamation, his glasses and shaving mirror, and more.


Amana Colonies

Amana, Iowa County, Iowa, 52203
Today, heritage tourism has become important to the economy of the Amana area. Historic preservation efforts by several local non-profit organizations, as well as the Amana Society, Inc., in conjunction with governmental, land-use and historic preservation ordinances attempt to preserve the natural and built environment of Amana.


American Precision Museum

West Windsor, Windsor County, Vermont, 05089
The American Precision Museum is located in the renovated 1846 Robbins & Lawrence factory on South Main Street in Windsor, Vermont. The museum has the largest collection of historically significant machine tools in the United States.



Lexington, Fayette County, Kentucky, 40502
Ashland is the name of the plantation of the 19th-century Kentucky statesman Henry Clay. Clay and his family resided at Ashland from about 1806 until his death in 1852.


Atlanta History Center

Atlanta, Fulton County, Georgia, 30305
The Atlanta History Center was founded in 1926. It has one of the largest collections of civil war artifacts in the world, and the Swan House and Tullie Smith Farm are located here.


Atwater Kent Museum of Philadelphia History

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 19106
Designed by John Haviland, the Greek-Revival style building was the original home to the Franklin Institute, which opened for students in 1826. It has been the city's history museum since 1938.


Baltimore Civil War Museum

Baltimore, Maryland, 21202
Originally the President Street Station, this site and the rail line were key elements of the "underground railroad" by which many slaves escaped to the north before the Civil War.



Biloxi, Harrison County, Mississippi, 39531
In 1953, the main house at Beauvoir was adapted as a house museum. In 1998, a Presidential Library (similar in style to the other United States Presidential Libraries) was completed and opened on site.


Birmingham Civil Rights Institute

Birmingham, Jefferson County, Alabama, 35203
Opened in November of 1992, Birmingham Civil Rights Institute is a large interpretive museum and research center that depicts the struggles of the American Civil Rights Movement in the 1950s and 1960s.


C. M. Russell Museum Complex

Great Falls, Cascade County, Montana, 59401
Located on the C. M. Russell Museum Complex property is Russell's log cabin studio, as well as his two-story wood frame home. The Russell home is open from May to September, and is furnished with period furniture (some of which was owned by the Russells).


Circus World Museum

Baraboo, Sauk County, Wisconsin, 53913
Circus World Museum holds one of the largest collections of circus materials in the world, including circus wagons, posters, photography, and artifacts used by shows from all over the United States.


Colonial Williamsburg

Williamsburg, James City County, Virginia
Colonial Williamsburg consists of many of the buildings that formed the original colonial capital of Williamsburg in James City County from 1699 to 1780.


Dole Plantation

North Shore, Hawaii, 96786
Constructed in 1989, the Dole Plantation home became a living museum and historical archive of the life and work of the James Dole, the industrialist who created the largest pineapple plantation in the world.


Dubuque County Jail

Dubuque, Dubuque County, Iowa, 52001
Completed in 1858, this massive Egyptian Revival style stone building was designed by the same architect who also did the Old Illinois State Capitol. The Dubuque County Historical Society now owns the building and operates it as a local history museum.


Durham Museum

Omaha, Douglas County, Nebraska, 68108
The Durham Museum is dedicated to preserving and displaying the history of the United States' western region. The museum is housed in Omaha's former Union Station.


Elfreth's Alley

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 19106
The houses in this small street have been privately owned and lived in since the early 1700's, making Elfreth's Alley the oldest continuously inhabited residential street in the country.


Elvis Presley Birthplace & Museum

Tupelo, Lee County, Mississippi, 38804
The Elvis Presley Birthplace is a historic museum site dedicated to the preservation of the birthplace of American musician Elvis Presley, as well as listed on the Mississippi Blues Trail.


Fort Mitchell Site

Fort Mitchell, Russell County, Alabama
Fort Mitchell Site is an archaeological site that was declared a National Historic Landmark in 1990.


Fort Union Trading Post National Historic Site

Williston, Williams County, North Dakota, 58801
This was the most important fur trading post on the upper Missouri until 1867. Visitors included John James Audubon, George Catlin, Father Pierre DeSmet, Sitting Bull, Karl Bodmer, and Jim Bridger.



Demopolis, Marengo County, Alabama, 36732
Gaineswood is one of the most significant remaining examples of Greek Revival architecture in Alabama. The house and grounds are currently operated by the Alabama Historical Commission as a historic house museum.


Great Lakes Shipwreck Museum

Paradise, Chippewa County, Michigan, 49768
Admission to the Great Lakes Shipwreck Museum includes a tour of historic buildings with displays that interpret the Great Lakes maritime, United States Coast Guard, and US Life-Saving Service history.


Great Platte River Road Archway Monument

Kearney, Nebraska, 68847
The Archway is a museum of and monument to Nebraska's and the Platte River valley's role in westward expansion. The Archway is directly over Interstate 80 three miles (5 km) east of Kearney, Nebraska.


Grenville M. Dodge House

Council Bluffs, Pottawattamie County, Iowa, 51503
From 1869 until his death, this was the residence of Grenville M. Dodge, who as Chief Engineer supervised the completion in 1869 of the Union Pacific Railroad. His three story, 14 room Victorian mansion was considered one of the finest residences in Iowa



Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 19144
In September 1777, during the Battle of Germantown, the British General James Agnew occupied the house as his headquarters. He was wounded and died in the front parlor, where his blood stains can still be seen on the floor.


Harriet Beecher Stowe House

Hartford, Hartford County, Connecticut, 06105
The Harriet Beecher Stowe House is a historic house museum and National Historic Landmark that was once the home of Harriet Beecher Stowe, author of Uncle Tom's Cabin.


Herbert Hoover Presidential Library and Museum

West Branch, Iowa, 52358
The Herbert Hoover Presidential Library and Museum is the presidential library and final resting place of Herbert Hoover, the 31st President of the United States (1929-1933), located on the grounds of the Herbert Hoover National Historic Site.


Huddleston Farmhouse Inn Museum

Mount Auburn, Indiana
The Huddleston Farmhouse served as a rest stop for travelers using the National Road (Cumberland Road), one of the earliest highways built in America. The Quaker family of 11 who lived in the house provided stables, food and lodging.


Idaho Museum of Natural History

Pocatello, Bannock County, Idaho, 83201
The Idaho Museum of Natural History is the official state natural history museum of Idaho, located on the campus of Idaho State University. Founded in 1934, it has collections in anthropology, vertebrate paleontology, earth science, and the life sciences.


Indian Pueblo Cultural Center

Albuquerque, Bernalillo County, New Mexico, 87104
Dedicated to the preservation and perpetuation of Pueblo Indian Culture, History and Art, the Center is a 10,000 sq ft (1,000 m2) museum of the authentic history and artifacts of traditional Pueblo cultures and their contemporary art.


Jefferson Davis Presidential Library and Museum

Biloxi, Mississippi, 39531
The Jefferson Davis Presidential Library and Museum is the presidential library of Jefferson Finis Davis, President of the Confederate States from 1861 to 1865.


John Dickinson House

Dover, Delaware, 19901
The John Dickinson House, generally known as Poplar Hall, is located on the John Dickinson Plantation in Dover, a property owned by the State of Delaware and open to the public as a museum by the Delaware Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs.


LSU Rural Life Museum

Baton Rouge, East Baton Rouge County, Louisiana, 70808
The Rural Life Museum commemorates the contributions made by its various cultural groups through interpretive programs and events throughout the year.


Mark Twain House

Hartford, Hartford County, Connecticut, 06105
The house is now a museum, along with an Education and Visitors Center built next to it. In 2000, the museum made about five million dollars in tourism from 50,000 visitors.


Mary Todd Lincoln House

Lexington, Fayette County County, Kentucky, 40507
The Mary Todd Lincoln House contains period furniture, portraits, and artifacts from the Todd and Lincoln families. The property is open to the public as a historic house museum.


Mill City Museum

Minneapolis, Hennepin County, Minnesota, 55401
The Mill City Museum features exhibits about the history of Minneapolis, flour milling machinery, a water lab and a baking lab.


Minidoka National Historic Site

Jerome, Idaho, 83338
Minidoka National Historic Site is a National Historic Site. It commemorates the more than 9,000 Japanese Americans who were imprisoned at the Minidoka War Relocation Center during the Second World War.


Minnesota History Center

St Paul, Ramsey County, Minnesota, 55102
The Minnesota History Center is a museum and library that serves as the headquarters of the Minnesota Historical Society. It is near downtown Saint Paul, Minnesota, and is considered one of Minnesota's finest public buildings.


Museum of Pop Culture

Seattle, Washington, 98109
The Museum of Pop Culture, or MoPOP (earlier called EMP Museum) is a nonprofit museum, dedicated to contemporary popular culture. It was founded by Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen in 2000 as the Experience Music Project.


Museum of World Treasures

Wichita, Sedgwick County, Kansas, 67202
The Museum of World Treasures is a world history museum in Wichita, Kansas. The Museum of World Treasures is not limited to a particular aspect of history, but has opted to display a wide range of objects.


Natchez National Historical Park

Natchez, Adams County, Mississippi, 39120
Natchez National Historical Park commemorates the history of Natchez, Mississippi. The park consists of three distinct parts. Fort Rosalie, the William Johnson House, home of a freed African-American barber, and Melrose, the estate of John T. McMurran.


National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum

Oklahoma City, Oklahoma County, Oklahoma, 73111
The National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum is a museum with more than 28,000 Western and American Indian art works and artifacts. Museum collections focus on preserving and interpreting the heritage of the American West.


National Farm Toy Museum

Dyersville, Dubuque County, Iowa, 52040
The National Farm Toy Museum is a museum specializes in preserving and displaying scale models, replicas, and toys based on farm equipment. The museum has over 30,000 guests each year and about 30,000 farm toys.


National Museum of Civil War Medicine

Frederick, Maryland, 21705
The National Museum of Civil War Medicine is a U.S. historic education institution located in Frederick, Maryland. Its focus involves the medical, surgical and nursing practices during the American Civil War (1861-1865).


Northern Pacific Depot - Hinckley Fire Museum

Hinckley, Pine County, Minnesota, 55037
The building was originally built by the St. Paul and Duluth Railroad, later the Northern Pacific Railway. The depot is now the Hinckley Fire Museum. The museum interprets the history of the fire that destroyed six towns.


Oak Alley Plantation

Vacherie, St. James County, Louisiana, 70090
Oak Alley Plantation is a historic plantation located on the west bank of the Mississippi River, in the community of Vacherie, St. James Parish, Louisiana.


Old Capitol Museum

Jackson, Mississippi, 39201
The Old Mississippi State Capitol, also known as Old Capitol Museum or Old State Capitol, served as the Mississippi statehouse from 1839 until 1903. The building now serves as a museum.


Old City Hall Southern Market (Museum of Mobile)

Mobile, Mobile County, Alabama, 36602
This is a historic complex of adjoining buildings that currently houses the Museum of Mobile. The complex was built from 1855 to 1857 to serve as a city hall and as a marketplace.


Pacific Aviation Museum, Pearl Harbor

Honolulu, Hawaii, 96818
Pacific Aviation Museum Pearl Harbor is a non-profit founded in 1999 to develop an aviation museum in Hawaii. The museum hosts a variety of aviation exhibits with a majority relating directly to the attack on Pearl Harbor and World War II.


Paul Revere House

Boston, Suffolk County, Massachusetts, 02113
The Paul Revere House (1680) was the colonial home of American patriot Paul Revere during the time of the American Revolution. A National Historic Landmark, it is now operated as a nonprofit museum by the Paul Revere Memorial Association.


Physick House

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 19106
The building was once the home of Philip Syng Physick, who is known as the father of American surgery. From his home medical office, he treated many well-known patients including Dolly Madison, President Andrew Jackson and Chief Justice John Marshall.


Pioneer Settlement for Creative Arts

Barberville, Volusia County, Florida, 32105
Anchored around the Central School of Barberville, many historic structures have been moved to the grounds. Other structures have been built on site to demonstrate historical trades.


Pioneer Village

Minden, Kearney County, Nebraska, 68959
Pioneer Village has a large collections of items from 1830 to the present, including frontier buildings, early cars and airplanes, tractors and other farm implements and an art collection.


Plimoth Plantation

Plymouth, Plymouth County, Massachusetts
Plimoth Plantation, founded in 1947, is a living history museum in Plymouth, Massachusetts, that exhibits the original settlement of the Plymouth Colony established in the 17th century by English colonists, some of whom later became known as Pilgrims.


Portland Children's Museum

Portland, Multnomah County, Oregon, 97221
Portland Children's Museum is the sixth oldest children's museum in the world and the oldest West of the Mississippi. The 50,000 sq ft (4,600 m2) museum receives over a quarter of a million visits from children and their families every year.


Samuel Powel House

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 19106
Samuel Powel served as the last mayor of Philadelphia under English rule and was the first mayor of the city after the creation of the United States. The house is considered one of the best existing examples of a Georgian Colonial townhouse.


Sloss Furnaces

Birmingham, Jefferson County, Alabama, 35222
Sloss Furnaces was operated as a pig iron-producing blast furnace from 1882 to 1971. After closing it became one of the first industrial sites in the U.S. to be preserved for public use. The site currently serves as an interpretive museum of industry.


Stranahan House

Fort Lauderdale, Broward County, Florida, 33301
Build by the founder of the city, the Stranahan House has served as a trading post, town hall, post office and bank. It has been restored to its 1913 condition as an example of Florida vernacular architecture in a tropical wilderness setting.


Sylvanus Wade House

Greenbush, Sheboygan County, Wisconsin, 53026
The Sylvanus Wade House is a former stagecoach inn that provided lodging and meals to travelers in the early statehood era in Wisconsin. The three-story wooden Greek Revival house was built between 1848 and 1851.


Tennessee State Museum

Nashville, Tennessee
With over 70,000 square feet of exhibit space, this is one of the nation's largest state museums.


The Henry Ford

Dearborn, Wayne County, Michigan, 48124
The Henry Ford (also known as the Henry Ford Museum and Greenfield Village, and more formally as the Edison Institute) is a large indoor and outdoor history museum complex, named for its founder, the noted automobile industrialist Henry Ford.


The National WWII Museum

New Orleans, Louisiana, 70130
The National WWII Museum, formerly known as the D-Day Museum, is a military history museum located in the Central Business District of New Orleans. The museum focuses on the contribution made by the United States to Allied victory in World War II.


The Witch House

Salem, Essex County, Massachusetts, 01970
The Witch House was the home of Judge Jonathan Corwin and is the only structure still standing in Salem, Massachusetts with direct ties to the Salem witch trials of 1692.


Titanic Museum

Branson, Missouri, 65616
The Titanic Museum Attraction is a museum located in Branson, Missouri on 76 Country Boulevard. It is one of two Titanic-themed museums owned by John Joslyn (who headed a 1987 expedition to Titanic's final resting place). The museum holds 400 pre-discover


Vermont History Museum

Montpelier, Washington County, Vermont, 05609
Housed in the Pavilion building next to the state capital. The Vermont History Museum boasts a collection of 20,000 artifacts including fine arts, crafts, household goods, clothing, agricultural tools from the pre-contact period to present.


Villa Louis

Prairie du Chien, Crawford County, Wisconsin, 53821
The Villa Louis, also known as Dousman Mansion, is a National Historic Landmark located on St. Feriole Island, in Prairie du Chien, southwestern Wisconsin.



Paoli, Chester County, Pennsylvania, 19301
The beautiful Georgian-style house was built in three sections of native stone quarried on the property. Today, the house is restored and furnished to reflect the Wayne Family's life there through the Federal, Victorian and Colonial Revival periods.


William Gilmore Simms Estate (Woodlands)

Bamberg County, South Carolina
William Gilmore Simms Estate is nationally notable as the home for many years of author William Gilmore Simms (1806-1870), considered one of the leading literary voices of the antebellum Southern United State.


Windsor Ruins

Port Gibson, Claiborne County, Mississippi, 39150
The ruins consist of 23 standing Corinthian columns of the largest antebellum Greek Revival mansion ever built in the state. The mansion stood from 1861 to 1890, when it was destroyed by fire.


Wisconsin Historical Museum

Madison, Dane County, Wisconsin, 53703
The Wisconsin Historical Museum is a museum located on the Capitol Square in Madison. It features information about the history of Wisconsin through artifacts, photographs, dioramas, audio-visual presentations, and interactive multimedia programs.

Top 10 Most Popular History Museums and Living History Areas Landmarks

  1. 'Iolani Palace
  2. Elvis Presley Birthplace & Museum
  3. The Witch House
  4. Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum
  5. Mark Twain House
  6. Dole Plantation
  7. Birmingham Civil Rights Institute
  8. Baltimore Civil War Museum
  9. Atlanta History Center
  10. Old City Hall Southern Market (Museum of Mobile)