Explore Our Collections

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Historical Exhibits

The museum has an extensive collection of authentic objects in its collections, including prehistoric American Indian artifacts, trade items from the trail, antique furniture, agricultural equipment, vintage automobiles, tools, toys, paintings, rugs, clothing, medical equipment, and more. These artifacts help us interpret and share the history that has shaped our country and our community.

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With over 7,000 historic photographs and 2,300 magic lantern glass slides, you get a glimpse into the past and a better understanding of what was important to people of the late 19th and early 20th century – historic sites along the Santa Fe Trail, dust storms, Pawnee County businesses, pioneer families, celebrations, farming, and more. And many of these pictures are available to view in our Online Photograph Collection.

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Over 700 linear feet of archival records document life in Larned, surrounding communities, and Pawnee County. The Santa Fe Trail Center Museum is the official repository of historic Pawnee County records. In addition, we house genealogical documents such as personal papers, family histories, business records, church records, obituaries, fraternal organization records and more.

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Research Library

The museum has an extensive collection of books in its research library, including topics on American Indians, Spanish exploration, pioneer life on the plains, the Santa Fe Trail, Westward Expansion, trappers and much more. The library is free and open to the public; however, we recommend that you make an appointment in advance. Please call 620-285-2054 to schedule or for more information.