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State Historical Museum

600 E. Locust St., Des Moines, IA 50319
515-281-5111
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Ranked #14 of 44 Attractions in Des Moines
Type: History Museums
Most recent review
- Sep 16, 2014
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48 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    26
    14
    6
    1
    1
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
La Grange, Illinois
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
23 attraction reviews
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 16, 2014

Great place to learn about products that made Iowa famous as well as the ecological minded people who made this state great. Loved the dioramas, and the special exhibit about Hollywood and Iowa. It is a free museum, but for a Saturday afternoon, there were only a handful of people here. Felt like I had the place to myself. Even... More

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Colorado Springs, Colorado, United States
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 11, 2014

Not a bad stop for history buffs. I appreciated the civil war exhibit, but didn't have time to go through all exhibits

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Yeppoon, Australia
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 attraction reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 1, 2014

This place is filled with so much history and culture surrounding Iowa from the civil war era right through to modern day. The exhibits and displays were constructed perfectly and were fantastic to look at. Well worth the visit.

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McAlester, Oklahoma
Top Contributor
84 reviews 84 reviews
13 attraction reviews
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed August 12, 2014

Don't know what I was expecting but found it to be rather sterile. Building and grounds were well maintained although the day we were there, there were groups of homeless people sitting around, (It was very hot outside). The 'rooms' were not easy to follow to see everything, felt like i was in a maze, so our little group of... More

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Des Moines, Iowa
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 21, 2014

Interesting exhibits in a comfortable, environment. The exhibits change periodically. Currently Iowa made movies and movie stars from Iowa are on display. The history of Iowa display is very interesting and well done, also.

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Panora, Iowa
Top Contributor
55 reviews 55 reviews
15 attraction reviews
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 21, 2014

How much Historical Museum can you endure in one visit? Well, that's about how much museum this is. It's underfunded but they do a pretty good job of keeping the displays fresh so there is always something new to see. It's NOT the old Historical Building of my youth that I loved, but that's OK because that was just a... More

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Sacramento, CA
Senior Contributor
44 reviews 44 reviews
17 attraction reviews
36 helpful votes 36 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 16, 2014

A great place to visit and to learn a little about everything Iowan. It's just a short walk from the state Capitol and entrance is free. Very enjoyable!

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Des Moines, Iowa
Senior Contributor
40 reviews 40 reviews
11 attraction reviews
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 14, 2014

Remembering the old-school wonders of the previous Iowa Historical Building, a recent visit to this museum confirms it to be a disappointment. It is an attractive building, but it feels empty and antiseptic inside. Also, when we were there on a weekday, if there were any other patrons in the building we didn't see them--it was like a ghost building.

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Des Moines, IA
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
3 attraction reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 20, 2014

Here's a fine place to dig into your curiosity about Iowa! Whether you grew up here, or not, there's something for everyone. As someone who loves planes and flying, I was most delighted with the planes suspended from the ceiling (brought back memories of the planes suspended from the ceiling of the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago). FYI:... More

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Oskaloosa, Iowa
Top Contributor
54 reviews 54 reviews
24 attraction reviews
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 5, 2014

This is not an ideal place to bring a toddler, but many there are several interactive exhibits for school aged children. The cafe has an affordable lunch menu.

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