Whether you’re interested in American history or millennia of human history, you can learn a lot about the past with a visit to one of these incredible history museums, voted by readers as 10 the best in the United States for 2023.
Photo courtesy of The National WWII Museum
No. 10: The National WWII Museum - New Orleans, Louisiana
The extensive and often interactive exhibits at The National WWII Museum bring to life the events of the latest World War and its aftermath. The collection includes vintage propaganda posters, oral histories from more than 9,000 military personnel, a 4D theater and a collection of wartime aircraft.
Photo courtesy of The Buffalo Bill Center of the West, Cody, Wyoming, USA
No. 9: Buffalo Bill Center of the West - Cody, Wyoming
The Buffalo Bill Center of the West comprises five smaller museums, each covering a facet of the American West: the Draper National History Museum, Plains Indian Museum, Buffalo Bill Museum, Whitney Western Art Museum and Cody Firearms Museum.
Photo courtesy of iStock / Sean Pavone
No. 8: El Paso Museum of History - El Paso, Texas
The El Paso Museum of History educates visitors about the multicultural and multinational history of the border region known as El Paso del Norte (The Pass of the North) through exhibits and a collection of artifacts. It's also home to DIGIE, an interactive digital wall that's 35 feet in length. It's the only wall of its kind in the entire U.S. and hosts images and videos that let you explore El Paso’s past and present.
Photo courtesy of Courtesy of The Trustees
No. 7: Fruitlands Museum - Harvard, Massachusetts
The Fruitlands Museum preserves the story of an 1843 Transcendentalist experiment in subsistence farming and self-reliance inspired by Ralph Waldo Emerson. Although the community lasted only seven months, today, the 210-acre property includes an original farmhouse, the Shaker Museum, the Native American Museum and an art museum.
Photo courtesy of Courtesy of the Museum of the American Revolution
No. 6: Museum of the American Revolution - Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Any visit to Independence Hall in Philadelphia isn't complete without a stop at the Museum of American Revolution, located steps away. The museum offers immersive galleries, a vast collection of period objects, and programs to help visitors gain a deeper understanding and appreciation for the forming of this nation and its ongoing commitment to liberty and equality.
Photo courtesy of Cincinnati Museum Center
No. 5: Cincinnati History Museum - Cincinnati, Ohio
From early settlers to present day, explore the story of Cincinnati at the Cincinnati History Museum. Visitors can step back in time to the 1850s with a recreation of a riverside street and market, as well as learn about traditions found only in Cincinnati, such as Cincinnati chili.
Photo courtesy of John Cross / Minnesota Historical Society
No. 4: Mill City Museum - Minneapolis, Minnesota
The Mill City Museum on the Mississippi riverfront was built within what's left of Washburn A Mill, a National Historic Landmark. It was once the largest and most advanced flour mill on the planet, turning Minneapolis into the flour milling capital of the world from 1880 to 1930. Now, visitors can learn all about that period of history through tours and hands-on exhibits.
Photo courtesy of Jay Rosenblatt / National Infantry Museum & Soldier Center
No. 3: National Infantry Museum & Soldier Center - Columbus, Georgia
Visitors to the National Infantry Museum & Soldier Center in Columbus are guided through the last 240 years of U.S. military history with a collection of more than 70,000 artifacts. It's one of the world's top military museums and one of the top-rated attractions in Columbus.
Photo courtesy of Courtesy of the Heinz History Center
No. 2: Heinz History Center - Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
The Heinz History Center preserves the history of Western Pennsylvanians and helps educate visitors with interactive exhibits spread across six floors. A highlight is the "Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood" exhibit, which houses artifacts from the popular children's show that was filmed in Pittsburgh. You'll get to see the welcoming living room set, The Great Oak Tree, King Friday XIII’s Castle and plenty of other notable items.
Photo courtesy of National Underground Railroad Freedom Center
No. 1: National Underground Railroad Freedom Center - Cincinnati, Ohio
Located on the banks of the Ohio River near downtown Cincinnati, the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center reveals the moving stories of the Underground Railroad, Martin Luther King's march from Selma, and the millions of people still enslaved in the world today.