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Best Local History & Culture in Dallas

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The Dallas Firefighters Museum is a historical landmark in the city. Built in 1907, this building was a functioning fire station for more than 60 years. The museum has over 2000 items on exhibit, including photographs and trucks. The most famous item here is a steam pumper from the 19th century which was pulled by horses. The visitors here are mostly kids in school groups.

The historic Dallas Heritage Village at Old City Park features lush, manicured gardens and a recreated Victorian-era town. Nestled near downtown, the expansive park is accentuated with beautiful homes and establishments. Volunteers demonstrate weaving, cooking and welding among other activities from that time period to those looking for an insight into Texan history. The site is an official history museum and is affiliated with The Dallas County Heritage Society. The society plays host to several events throughout the year; the annual Candlelight Country Fair and Old Fashioned Fourth of July draw major crowds.

This is a permanent exhibition of the tragic events leading up to the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza opened in 1989 and is located in the Texas School Book Depository building, the site from where Lee Harvey Oswald allegedly shot the President. Displays include a moving overview of the time period, and the life and accomplishments of the 35th President of the United States. Enlarged police photographs, news footage, and audio tools allow visitors to learn about the tragic events of November 22, 1963.

The homestead of the fictional Ewing family has become the “world's most famous ranch.” The sprawling acreage of this North Texas ranch is located 20 miles north of downtown Dallas and, although the long-running television series Dallas has been off the air for several years, the mansion and grounds are still a popular place to visit. Tram tours carry guests on a voyage through the history of the series every half-hour throughout the day. The Ewing mansion is the key point of the tour, offering insight to the characters and filming of the series.

The Old Red Courthouse is an outstanding feature of the Dallas County Historic Plaza. It was built in 1892 in Romanesque Revival style. It is constructed of rough-cut, Pecos Red Sandstone and trimmed in Arkansas blue granite. The courthouse is listed on the National Register of Historic Places as a City of Dallas Landmark and a Recorded Texas Historical Landmark. Four prior courthouses have graced the same location. The Old Red Courthouse contains the Old Red Museum.

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