Old Courthouse Museum
Old Courthouse Museum
4.5
8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Monday
8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Tuesday
8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Wednesday
8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Thursday
8:00 AM - 9:00 PM
Friday
8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Saturday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Sunday
12:00 PM - 5:00 PM
About
Beautifully restored 1800s quartzite building has three floors of regional history exhibits.
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Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as wait time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

Popular mentions

4.5
157 reviews
Excellent
75
Very good
65
Average
16
Poor
1
Terrible
0

Ken W
Gretna, NE151 contributions
Jul 2022
This three level self guided tour was full of photos and pieces, some going back to stone tools. The original court room is now empty but the walls, ceiling, and floors have been restored, highlight of the building for me. The quartzite stone used for the building is different for the midwest, i.e., its not limestone.
Written July 28, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

bilyclub1
Chicago, IL91 contributions
Aug 2018 • Family
Stayed overnight in Sioux Falls and checked out local sights. The old courtroom is restored and a great room to check out. Some of the historical exhibits on display are interesing.
Written July 16, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Dawson L
Pierre, South Dakota, United States55 contributions
Mar 2017 • Couples
Good overview of the history of the Sioux Falls area. The architecture of the building, dating back to the early 1900's if great to see as well.
Written December 23, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

PhilJ925
Brownsburg, IN182 contributions
Aug 2015
This is a very nice choice for people who want to learn local history. Plus, it is simply a beautiful piece of architecture. Be sure to visit the court room on the upper floor. Also, this is a freebie!
Written August 22, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

TmBunger
Pittsburgh, PA4 contributions
Apr 2015 • Couples
It's free, it's a beautiful old building that has been well-restored, and the whole family can easily learn something. The displays have interactive things for the kids, even the chance to pretend driving a stage coach. It was a great visit.
Written May 28, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Jim P
Sioux Falls, SD13 contributions
Mar 2015 • Family
The exhibits are a window into the amazing history of Sioux Falls and the surrounding area. Well worth the time you will spend, with some displays being permanent and new traveling exhibits.
Written May 19, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

jahoduluth
Duluth, MN180 contributions
May 2015 • Couples
My wife and I visited the Old Courthouse Museum in downtown Sioux Falls while in the area recently. This is the former Minnehaha County Court House designed in Romanesque style with its landmark 165-foot working clock tower. It has not served as the county court house for over 40 years, however much of the building has been restored to show how it looked in its original decor and configuration. Areas that have not been restored have largely been converted into exhibit space on a wide variety of topics.

Three floors of the building are open to the public. Admission is free, as is nearby parking for up to two hours. A free will offering box is placed near the exit with a sign suggesting a donation of $5; funds go toward continued restoration of other areas and ongoing maintenance. Overall, for a building over 120 years old, the staff has done a remarkable job of restoring the building and preserving it given its age. One of the highlights was on the second floor where the main courtroom was immaculately refurbished back in the late 1980s to how it appeared at the beginning of the 20th Century. Researchers were able to determine actual paint colors, styles of light fixtures, and other details and replicated the same with painstaking accuracy. The intricate designs on the ceiling and walls show the workmanship that went into this effort. The building retains much of its original woodwork, still largely in excellent condition. Also on the 2nd floor, the restrooms have retained their original character, however they are fully functional. The third floor balcony for viewing court proceedings is also in outstanding condition.

The building is much more than just an old court house. The museum exhibits include some artifacts pertaining to the local judicial branch of government, however much of it covers a variety of other topics. Some are regional interest, such as westward expansion across the United States and how one prepared for the trip across the country. Others appeared to be more temporary, perhaps traveling displays, such as one on coins and another on ladies' purses. You might check with the museum in advance of your visit to determine if these are still on display or what other exhibits are in their place. Yet other displays included one on local railroad history, a biography of the building's architect and a tribute to other buildings he designed, a Norwegian loom where museum volunteers make rugs by hand that are sold on site, and much more. A genealogy research room is also available. There is even a small gift shop on site. Our total visit was about an hour and a half, which was enough time to tour all three floors and visit the gift shop.

Whether you like 19th Century architecture, are interested in regional history, or have another specific interest, the Old Courthouse Museum in Sioux Falls is well worth the visit.
Written May 5, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Randy K
Des Moines, IA3,336 contributions
Dec 2014 • Solo
This is actually rather interesting. The exterior is made of large stone blocks which I think are called brownstone.

The interior has lots of older style rooms. Some original wallpaper.

The exhibits are rather interesting covering the history of the area.
Written April 10, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Glcoleman
Waukee, IA241 contributions
Sep 2014 • Couples
I started out here just taking exterior building photographs because it is a magnificent structure. But after verifying that personal photography of the exterior was okay, I decided to spend some time wandering through this beautiful restored building. What a great little gem of history, and it was free! Beautifully restored and some amazing historical pieces. My favorite were the courtroom balcony chairs that are original to the building.
Written September 25, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Jackismo
Greenwich3 contributions
A stop on the Sioux Falls Transit Trolley, this is a MUST !! Local and State history is abundant here, with many artifacts and helpful descriptions. In its time, this building was the biggest courthouse between Chicago and Denver. Now it's a GEM of a museum.
Written August 11, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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Old Courthouse Museum - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (with Photos)

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Very Good Reviews

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