We love finding strange museums in our travels around the country, and in fourteen years of fulltiming we have discovered some real finds as we explore this great land of ours. Here are some of my favorites, in no particular order.
Warther Carving Museum; Dover, Ohio – Showcasing the life work of master carver Ernest “Mooney” Warther, this museum displays a one-of-a-kind collection of carved items ranging from tools to steam locomotives.
Spam Museum; Austin, Minnesota – No, not that aggravating e-mail, we’re talking the original Spam, the meat that won World War II. Find out the history of this canned meat product, and the contributions the Hormel Company made to our nation during the war effort.
National Balloon Museum; Indianola, Iowa – 200 years of ballooning history is chronicled here, from the first lighter than air flight in 1783 to present day sport ballooning.
Tow Truck Museum; Chattanooga, Tennessee – At the International Towing & Recovery Hall of Fame and Museum you will find a fascinating collection of restored antique wreckers and equipment.
Yesterday’s Children Antique Doll and Toy Museum; Vicksburg, Mississippi – With over 1,000 dolls dating back to 1843 on display, as well as toys we all grew up with, this is a great place to revisit your childhood.
Mid-America Windmill Museum; Kendallville, Indiana – You will find over 50 historic windmills on display at this interesting small outdoor museum.
Museum Of Appalachia, Norris, Tennessee – This living history museum features dozens of historic buildings and demonstrations of old time skills like grinding corn, weaving, spinning, and chair caning.
Music House Museum; Acme, Michigan – This interesting museum near Traverse City is home to the world’s largest collection of mechanical musical devices.
National Bird Dog Museum; Grand Junction, Tennessee – You can see displays of art, photography and memorabilia reflecting a variety of pointing dog and retriever breeds, hunting, field trial activities, and shooting sports covering more than 100 years of sporting tradition at this small town museum.
Bicycle Museum of America; New Bremen, Ohio – This small town museum is a treasure trove of bicycles and bicycle memorabilia dating back to the early 1800s. Here you will see everything from primitive bikes with appropriate names like the Boneshaker, to high wheeled bicycles that the gentry of another age enjoyed, to modern carbon frame bicycles that one can lift with a single finger.
International Rock-a-Billy Hall of Fame and Museum; Jackson, Tennessee – Dedicated to preserving and promoting Rockabilly Music, this museum’s displays recognize the pioneers of Rockabilly music with stage costumes, instruments, and memorabilia.
Wheels Through Time Museum; Maggie Valley, North Carolina – If you like motorcycles, you’ll love this place, which has an amazing collection of antique and vintage motorcycles, along with over 25,000 pieces of motorcycle memorabilia, and a nice collection of antique automobiles.
National Watch and Clock Museum; Columbia, Pennsylvania – You’ll find everything from sundials and ancient Egyptian hourglasses to ultra-modern atomic clocks that can measure time in nanoseconds at this surprisingly interesting museum.
World Kite Museum; Long Beach, Washington – If you thought kites were just for kids, guess again! Over the years kites have served mankind as research tools, in hunting and fishing, and even in wartime, and you can learn all about it here!
These are just some of the fun and interesting museums waiting to be discovered in every corner of America. What are some of your favorites?
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How about the Wild Turkey Center and Winchester Museum, in Edgefield, SC – the feathered kind, not the bottled kind! http://www.nwtf.org/about_us/wtc_museum.html
Al is going to be a little disappointed, not even a honorable mention?
You would love the Hammer Museum in Haines, Alaska.
We loved the Hammer Museum in Haines Alaska. It is sure one of a kind and has been featured on King5 Evening Magazine. We also enjoyed the Hop Museum in Toppenish. They also have wonderful painted urals on the buildings done by local artists depicting the history of the area.
Sue, Al is oddball but the Rv Museum isn’t.
Al is just “special.”
Nick, do you use Roadside America to find such museums?
I have a few dozen reference books that I refer to, Roadside America being one of them. We also get tips from readers on places to see, and I do a lot of internet research on areas where we will be traveling.