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“Excellent Houdini exhibit”

The History Museum at the Castle
Ranked #5 of 34 things to do in Appleton
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: The History Museum at the Castle presents award-winning local history as well as national exhibits through hands-on experiences that engage people of all ages. We're best known for our exceptional interactive Harry Houdini exhibit that reveals the magician's illusions. Don't miss the exclusive Leonardo da Vinci: Machines in Motion interactive exhibit now through February 3, 2013! We also pay tribute to Pulitzer Prize winning author Edna Ferber, and put Sen. Joseph McCarthy into perspective.
Madison, Wisconsin
Level Contributor
95 reviews
42 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 63 helpful votes
“Excellent Houdini exhibit”
Reviewed October 7, 2013

The jewel of the castle is the Houdini exhibit, which not only explains about the showman's life, but also includes a large interactive area where you can try out some of his feats for yourself. The current food exhibit was confusing and overwhelming. There were some excellent nuggets of information and the fishing shanty spearing was fun. But the German POW jacket added nothing to the story, especially since that was the only reference to canning manufactories in the entire exhibit. The large amount of space devoted to three kitchens over time was wasted space. I think the exhibit should have been edited to focus solely on Wisconsin foodways.

Visited October 2013
Helpful?
Thank Millie6119
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
myhistorymuseum, Public Relations Manager at The History Museum at the Castle, responded to this review, October 10, 2013
Sounds like you had fun in the Houdini exhibit! Nothing like hands-on fun. We appreciate your feedback on the Food exhibit. Learning about and seeing items such as the uniform expand on our area's history, which is what makes our research and exhibits authentic. Thank you for taking time to write.
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114 reviews from our community

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English first
Denver, colorado
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“A quick look at Appleton's History”
Reviewed September 9, 2013

A brief but comprehensive illustration of the paper-making history of the area was our favorite part of the museum.

Visited August 2013
Helpful?
Thank m0untainhigh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
myhistorymuseum, Public Relations Manager at The History Museum at the Castle, responded to this review, September 11, 2013
The papermaking and printing industries were the backbones of commerce here, All based on the power of the Fox River. Thank you for visiting, and sharing your experience.
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Madison, Wisconsin
Level Contributor
197 reviews
110 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 121 helpful votes
“Probably less than you expect”
Reviewed August 17, 2013

The museum is probably smaller and contains fewer exhibits than most people would expect. There's one glass case with information about Edna Ferber which I really appreciated since I had no idea she ever lived in Appleton. The information on Joseph McCarthy was very sparse. I would have been interested to see and read more. The Houdini exhibit is OK - probably more geared towards kids. There are some hands-on handcuff & pick and steel cage type displays. The biggest exhibit was one on food which I didn't visit as it didn't interest me. I probably spent about 20 minutes inside.

Visited August 2013
Helpful?
Thank Mathyew
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
myhistorymuseum, Public Relations Manager at The History Museum at the Castle, responded to this review, August 19, 2013
The History Museum at the Castle offers a range of exhibits intended for a wide audience, both local and out of area, and for those who know a lot or just a little about our area's history. The exhibit scripts are written for both older children and adults, with the hands-on activities designed for experiential learning. Thank you for visiting the Museum, and for sharing your impressions.
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Wisconsin
Level Contributor
106 reviews
50 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
“Just okay for kids”
Reviewed August 17, 2013 via mobile

The Houdini exhibit was the only part that held the kid's interest. $20 for a family is a bit expensive for 20 minutes of children's entertainment. Great for someone who loves the history of Wisconsin and the Fox Valley. Very clean and well maintained. Would recommend more for adults.

Visited August 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank fdlfan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
myhistorymuseum, Public Relations Manager at The History Museum at the Castle, responded to this review, August 19, 2013
Thank you for coming to the Museum and for sharing your experiences. Museums are best enjoyed at your own pace and to your level of interest. We appreciate your comments.
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Bowling Green, Kentucky
Level Contributor
3 reviews
“Great local history museum”
Reviewed August 12, 2013

The food exhibit was well researched and presented. It was fun, not purely academic. They have a pretty good idea of who their audience is. Didn't take me long to go through the Houdini exhibit, but I found it interesting. The downstairs area is pretty typical of most local history museums, rooms exhibiting local industry and businesses. Thought the photography exhibit was interesting, as I'm not from that area. Glad to see a tribute to Edna Ferber; I feel like she is one of America's most under rated novelists. Place was clean and attractive and in a nice historic structure right in the downtown area.

Visited August 2013
Helpful?
Thank JDJeffrey
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
myhistorymuseum, Public Relations Manager at The History Museum at the Castle, responded to this review, August 16, 2013
Thank you for writing such a thorough and thoughtful review about the History Museum. We hope you also enjoyed and experienced a lot while you were here in the Fox Cities.
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