Edmond has its own world-class museum with over forty-one thousand artifacts in its collection, the Edmond Historical Society and Museum. This historical gem is located in the old National Guard Armory at 431 South Boulevard. The native sandstone building was built in 1936 and placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1991.
The collection of artifacts and memorabilia frequently rotates, so there’s always something new to see. Over five hundred items are on display at any one time, and they all tell a bit of the story of Edmond’s history. Ongoing exhibits include the story of the armory building, the first buildings and businesses to come out of the land run of 1889, and the charming story of “Kentucky Daisy.” It seems that Daisy was something of an adventurer, and as the tale goes, she jumped from a moving train to stake her claim during the land run.
Throughout the year, the museum offers different exhibits based on various historical eras, such as the 1950s. What’s Cooking Edmond runs through August 2021 and is the story of how cooking and food has evolved from the Land Run through today. It also includes a 1940s type comedy radio show called “Holiday Cooking Disasters.”
Education and interactive events are a big part of the museum’s mission. Children’s programming includes Living History summer camps and day camps during school breaks. Adults can enjoy themed events and parties such as the recent 1940s dance. Teachers will enjoy bringing their students for field trips to see the 1889 School House and the Native American exhibits. They also have a traveling trunk and will bring the history to school.
This fall, the museum will celebrate Route 66 by installing a permanent exhibit about The Mother Road. The exhibit will also feature a story about Edmond’s Blue Hippo.
The Edmond Historical Society film archive houses more than 12.1 million linear feet of motion picture film and video footage. Five films are available on the museum’s website.
When asked what the museum needs most, Executive Director Amy Stephens said, “I just want more people to be aware of the museum, to come and see us and the amazing history of Edmond.”
The museum gallery is available to rent for parties and special events. With a maximum capacity of forty-nine people, the 1900’s Rodkey House is perfect for smaller gatherings like bridal showers, baby showers, and luncheons.
Admission is free. Check their website for hours and Covid policies.
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About Laura Gamble
Laura is President of Redbud Advisory Group, a consulting company that she founded in 2016. Redbud, whose tagline is, “First I listen”, provides a myriad of consulting and professional development services to non-profit and small business leaders. She is a certified life coach and holds certifications in non-profit management and DISC Behavioral Analysis.