Top 9 Living History Museums in the United States – FamilySearch February 18, 2020

Noticed this on FamilySearch – Top 9 Living History Museums in the United States: More information on the link above, but it would have put the post over 850+ words long.

February 18, 2020  – by  Sunny Morton

The best living history museums in the United States immerse visitors in the everyday life experiences of people from the past. Visit these top destinations, and step back in time.

A living history museum is no ordinary museum. They bring the past alive by recreating the sights, sounds, aromas, and even tastes of the past. The experience is akin to stepping onto a movie set or traveling back in time.

Across the United States and beyond, living history attractions such as the ones listed below open windows into local history and cultures spanning more than 500 years. Choose one near you, or travel to one that celebrates your family’s culture or speaks to your interests.

Cherokee Heritage Center, Tahlequah, Oklahoma

The Cherokee Heritage Center transports guests into the everyday life of Diligwa, a 1710 Cherokee village.


This indoor and outdoor experience features nearly 20 wattle and daub structures set in a detailed historical landscape, with a primary council house, a summer and winter house, a corn crib, and more. Alongside is a museum that preserves the genealogy of the Cherokee people and tells the powerful story of the Trail of Tears.

Colonial Williamsburg, Williamsburg, Virginia

Colonial Williamsburg creates an entire British colonial city from the 1700s.


Conner Prairie, Fishers, Indiana

A family-friendly destination, the living history museum Conner Prairie is all hands-on history!


At a recreated Lenape camp, enter a wigwam, throw a tomahawk, and learn about fur trading. An 1836 Prairietown neighborhood bustles with hardworking artisans, settlers, and heritage varieties of livestock. Visit an Indiana town from 1863, where smoke still rises from a Civil War raid. Gather supplies for the wounded, or join military drills. Feeling brave? Lift off the ground in an 1859 helium balloon.

Frontier Culture Museum, Staunton, Virginia

The Frontier Culture Museum recreates the Old World and New World environments of people who migrated to colonial Virginia.


Genesee Country Village and Museum, Mumford, New York

The Genesee Country Village and Museum brings together 68 buildings, heirloom gardens, and fields of livestock to recreate a working historical community. Visitors progress through three distinct eras: early settlement (1790–1820), the village (1830–1860), and the city (1860–1900).


Greenfield Village, Dearborn, Michigan

The open-air Greenfield Village celebrates historical American ingenuity and perseverance on its 80-acre campus.

National Underground Railroad Freedom Center, Cincinnati, Ohio

At the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center, immerse yourself in the experiences of enslaved African Americans, refugees from slavery, and those who acted against slavery.


Engage with storytelling and hands-on activities that recount the experiences of those who resisted slavery during the mid-1800s. Immerse yourself in stories you see recreated on film in an experiential theater. Peer into an actual slave pen used to imprison enslaved people in the early 1800s.

Plimoth Plantation, Plymouth, Massachusetts

The 17th century comes alive at Plimoth Plantation, where visitors witness interactions between two cultures: the native Wampanoag people and English immigrants who were trying to establish a coastal settlement.


Ponce de Leon’s Fountain of Youth Archaeological Park, St. Augustine, Florida

Fountain of Youth is a living history museum that commemorates the history of the oldest successful European settlement in the continental United States.


Visit a painstakingly reconstructed Timucuan village, and learn about those who lived here when Spanish explorers arrived in the 1500s. Step into the Franciscan mission building, modeled after the 1587 original from local materials. Stand in the shade of the Spanish watchtower, listen to the roar of a cannon firing, see antique firearm demonstrations, and watch a blacksmith creating Spanish colonial-style iron goods.


About Wichita Genealogist

Originally from Gulfport, Mississippi. Live in Wichita, Kansas now. I suffer Bipolar I, ultra-ultra rapid cycling, mixed episodes. Blog on a variety of topics - genealogy, DNA, mental health, among others. Let's
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3 Responses to Top 9 Living History Museums in the United States – FamilySearch February 18, 2020

  1. SLIMJIM says:

    Seeing this list of Museums makes me wish the lockdown in my area be over

    Liked by 1 person

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