Currently Closed
Monday: 10:00 am - 5:00 pm
Tuesday: 10:00 am - 5:00 pm
Wednesday: 10:00 am - 5:00 pm
Thursday: 10:00 am - 5:00 pm
Friday: 10:00 am - 5:00 pm
Saturday: 10:00 am - 5:00 pm
Sunday: Closed
405-522-5248
 

Located on 18 acres right across from the Oklahoma Capitol building, the History Center is a 215,000-square-foot learning center that houses five state-of-the-art galleries, featuring everything from American Indian and African American history to information on the military in Oklahoma, the state's oil and gas industry, aerospace and some of its most important citizens and points of heritage. Exhibits change regularly.

Just outside the museum, visitors can take the Red River Journey, which offers a walking tour of the Red River Valley's landforms, vegetation and important locations. The grounds also house an outdoor oilfield exhibit, complete with drilling derricks and related machinery.

CURRENT EXHIBITS:

Welcome Home: Oklahomans and the War in Vietnam looks at more than the historic events that occurred during the war. It explores the impact of the war on Oklahoma families, as told through the stories of the young men and women who served their country in the armed services and the immigrant families who fled Vietnam and came to Oklahoma seeking freedom and opportunity. The story begins with a look at the family histories of Oklahomans who served in Vietnam. The second section explores the roots of Vietnamese families that eventually relocated to Oklahoma. The next section tells the Vietnamese refugees' harrowing stories of escape as they left all they had known in their homeland to obtain safety, security and opportunity in the United States. The fourth and final section of the exhibit brings Oklahoma-born military personnel and immigrants back to Oklahoma, where their stories continue as they deal with challenges and seize opportunities. For more information, click here.

Crossroads of Commerce: A History of Free Enterprise in Oklahoma tells the story of economic development in Oklahoma through five time periods from 1716 to the present day. In each section, the exhibit sets the stage of history with the challenges and opportunities that ended one era and began another. The intent is to connect the dots between history and economic development in a way that celebrates creativity and hard work and inspires young people to take a chance. For more information, click here.

Smoke Over Oklahoma: The Railroad Photographs of Preston George includes twenty-five images of different railroad lines that passed through Oklahoma, such as the Katy and the Frisco, and the heavier duty locomotives of the Kansas City Southern and the Santa Fe lines. These images are included in a recent book by the same title, “Smoke Over Oklahoma: The Railroad Photographs of Preston George” by Augustus J. Veenendaal Jr. For more information, click here.

The Art of War: WWI Posters from the Oscar Jacobson Collection commemorates the 100th anniversary of the United States' entry into World War I on April 6, 1917. On display are twenty-two posters from the collection of Oscar Jacobson, who was the first director of the School of Art at the University of Oklahoma and the first director of the Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art. As a valuable historical research resource, the posters provide multiple points of view for understanding this global conflict. As artistic works, the posters range in style from graphically vibrant works by well-known designers to anonymous broadsides. For more information, click here.

Curators’ Corner highlights recent museum donations and artifacts specially chosen by the curators for the interesting stories they tell. The artifacts in Curators' Corner will rotate approximately every six months. You can visit this exhibit in the Noble Foundation Gallery on the third floor of the Oklahoma History Center. For more information, click here.

Steamboat Heroine offers a glimpse of one of the earliest examples of western steamboats ever discovered. On May 6, 1838, Heroine was navigating the Red River on its way to Fort Towson to deliver much-needed supplies to the soldiers stationed there. Just twenty minutes from its destination, Heroine hit a snag and quickly sank. The passengers survived, but the supplies and the ship were lost. In 1999 the Oklahoma Historical Society and the Institute of Nautical Archaeology at Texas A&M University were notified that the remnants of a ship had been exposed. Combining their efforts and resources, these institutions excavated the site, identified the ship and conserved many pieces of the structure. Although the majority of the superstructure of the Heroine had long since disintegrated, the surviving components were used to create a representation of the original vessel, as well as a look into the lives of the people of that era. For more information, click here.

On Behalf of the Pioneers: The Oklahoma Century Chest 1913-2013 features a time capsule that was buried on April 22, 1913, in the basement of the First Lutheran Church of Oklahoma City. One hundred years later on April 22, 2013, the church opened the chest and revealed the perfectly preserved contents deposited by the pioneers of Oklahoma. Visitors can view never-before-seen photographs, documents, and American Indian artifacts and hear Oklahoma pioneer Angelo C. Scott's speech delivered at the burial of the chest in 1913. In addition the exhibit contains dozens of messages, prophecies, and letters from the pioneers of 1913 to their descendants 100 years later. For more information, click here.

 

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