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Best Local History & Culture in Oklahoma City

By: Cityseeker
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Gaylord-Pickens Oklahoma Heritage Museum

This museum is housed in the ornate Mid-Continent Life Insurance building and its primary goal is to inform visitors about the many contributions that Oklahomans have provided to their state and country. Some of the highlights are the 'Bust Gallery', which displays the sculptured likenesses of famous Oklahomans like Maria Tallchief, Ralph Ellison and Mickey Mantle. There is also an interactive exhibit about the Chickasaw Nation and the Chesapeake Oklahoma Theater is located inside. Additionally, the museum provides a backdrop for other events such as field trips, workshops, weddings, etc.

Oklahoma City, OK, United States
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Harn Homestead

The Harn Homestead and 1889ers Museum is where city benefactor William Fremont Harn developed this quintessential frontier homestead. The estate contains a one-room schoolhouse, a grandiose Victorian mansion and a petting-zoo/farm on the grounds. The land was claimed during the Oklahoma Land Run of 1889 and today the complex offers hands-on education about the work ethic during the late 19th Century as well as providing field trips and day camps. The 9.4 acre facility is also available for corporate events, weddings, birthday parties, etc.

Oklahoma City, OK, United States
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Oklahoma History Center

Located on the grounds of the State Capitol and managed under the auspices of the Oklahoma Historical Society, this museum takes visitors on a journey through the state's turbulent and exciting history. Many know the mythic story of the Land Run of 1889, but the exhibits here go back even further—you will see Oklahoma artifacts from the Jurassic era also. Some of the most popular displays focus on Native American culture, the Oklahoma oil boom, the state's impressionist painters and they also have some interesting online exhibits also.

Oklahoma City, OK, United States
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Oklahoma Firefighters Museum

Quite possibly, this is one museum the kids will not mind visiting because firemen sometimes hold a special mystique for them. The State Firefighters' Association runs this museum that depicts how firefighting has evolved throughout history. Exhibits of antique, century-old fire engines will amaze and educate visitors; one of the most popular exhibits is Oklahoma's first fire station, a rustic log cabin built just after the Civil War. In addition to unique items like a collection of uniform shoulder patches and fire alarms, the historical collection shows little-known aspects that accompany the profession.

Oklahoma City, OK, United States
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National Softball Hall of Fame and Museum

Everything you ever wanted to know about the game of softball awaits you at this museum and gallery near the state capitol. From its inception as an indoor game in 1887 to the greatest players that ever played, this hall is one of the most difficult to enter, it only has 366 inductees and it also serves as the headquarters of the Amateur Softball Association/USA Softball and the International Softball Federation.

Oklahoma City, OK, United States
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National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum

The American West in all its glory and grandeur is captured in this 220,000 square feet (20,439 square meter) museum. There are hundreds of sculptures and thousands of paintings, photographs and artifacts from the Old West. The newest addition is the Joe Grandee wing, which features more than 5,000 artifacts from this artist's personal collection. There is a life-size reproduction of a frontier town, a rodeo gallery, a cowboy gallery and a frontier soldier gallery. You will also see the largest collection of contemporary western artists, as well as the famous paintings of Frederick Remington.

Oklahoma City, OK, United States
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