Wayne County Historical Museum | Midwest Living

Wayne County Historical Museum

1150 N. A St.
Richmond  Indiana  47374
United States
(765) 962-5756
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Midwest Living Review

Damaine Vonada
The Wayne County Historical Museum is one of Indiana's best-kept secrets.

Indiana Jones had nothing on Indiana Julie, a real-life adventuress named Julia Meek Gaar who in the early 1900s traveled the world and collected cultural artifacts that she shipped back home to Richmond, Indiana. To house her treasures, she also bought an 1865 Quaker Meeting House and gave it to the local historical society. Eighty years later, the Wayne County Historical Museum still displays the fascinating things Julia found, as well as Richmond-area items that have national and even international significance. In the Mummy Room, look for the 3,000-year-old mummy Julia acquired in Egypt in 1929. Scholars have determined that the mummy is a male who died around age 35, and because one anthropologist used a CAT scan to reconstruct the mummy's face, you can even see what he looked like. The museum's authentic Conestoga Wagon is one of the legendary prairie schooners pioneers used on their westward migration. Checkout the exhibit of Westcott, Detroit Electric, Crosley and other early automobiles that likewise helped keep the nation moving. Other displays include dolls, dollhouses, furniture, pottery and cameras. The grounds also feature the county's oldest log schoolhouse (dating from 1812) and a two-story log residence built in 1823. The gift shop sells books on local history, candles, Folkmanis finger and hand puppets, pottery, toys and locally made goat-milk soap. Admission is $5, and worth it.

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