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Smoky Hill Museum
211 West Iron Avenue
Salina, Kansas 67401
Voice: 785-309-5776

The Smoky Hill Museum features a full-sized sod dugout, operating flour mill, and historical exhibits. Crossroads of the Heartland tells the community’s history in a dynamic and inviting way, interweaving it with experiences, tales, graphics, and artifacts.

The Smoky Hills region lies at the crossroads of the heartland where abundant grasslands have long attracted grazing animals and migrating birds. In turn, for more than 12,000 years these animals and fertile lands have attracted humans to the area. In 1858, five men settled in this lush valley near a bend of the Smoky Hill River, as many humans had done before.

Throughout this exhibit, you will experience the people, places, and events that have left an indelible mark on the fabric of the Smoky Hills region, creating a crossroads of business, transportation, and social exchange in the heartland of America.

The Mercantile Store features a façade of an early mercantile with lap siding, wood trim and decorative painting. Inside you will find the Mercantile Store Learning Center which provides hands-on activities for role-playing, discovery, and exploration of the principles of buying, selling, and bartering. Utilizing an interactive kit, visitors will learn how supplies were obtained, staples were stocked and sold, and what types of fabric, clothing, equipment, candy and other necessities were available.

Walk across the porch of a 1920s cottage style house as you head to the Community Planning Learning Center. Utilizing a floor map of the City of Salina, visitors will be encouraged to use the web-accessible Geographic Information System to view aerial maps showing any property simply by entering the address.

March with the troops of Company M as you learn about the Salina’s military history. Salina’s central location made it attractive as a site for the Smoky Hill Army Air Field and Camp Phillips during World War II. Built as critical support facilities for the war effort, these facilities still influence the shape and progress of the crossroads.

Join us as we take a look at some of the turbulent social, economic, technological and cultural changes that affected American lives during the decade that became known as the Roaring Twenties.

One Keeper's Place is just the place for kids. It has a wide variety of activities for the young and the young at heart. The Hideaway houses puzzles and a large variety of books for reading. If you don’t want to use the overstuffed chairs and sofa to do your reading, try using the Indian teepee. For the very young the building blocks can challenge the imagination; or perhaps a story from one of the many books on the shelves will entertain them.

For those who like to challenge their minds, try the giant checker board or the Qubic game, 3-D tic tac toe. History Mysteries are available for those who like to solve puzzles. Help Inspector OK solve a case. First, listen to his instructions on the telephone. On his desk in The Office you will find file baskets containing six different mysteries to solve. Pick one up.



Pictures and information were provided by Smoky Hill Museum

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