North Dakota October 18, 2018
6 Little Known Museums In North Dakota Where Admission Is Free
If you’re feeling up to doing something cool but not feeling up to paying a hefty price for it, don’t worry! One of the great things about North Dakota is that there are quite a few free attractions to enjoy. Even more specifically, there are some truly awesome museums all around the state where admission is completely free of charge. Keep reading and you might find one that is near you and just what you’re looking for!
1. Stutsman County Memorial Museum - Jamestown
This gorgeous mansion is over 100 years old and has been converted into a museum with tons of history to discover inside. This isn't just a house with period-accurate room set ups, it has different rooms for different things. From scale models of Jamestown to railroad history to a library - it has a bit of everything, and it's entirely free to visit.
The Stutsman County Memorial Museum is located at 321 3rd Ave. SE, Jamestown, ND 58401. It is open throughout Memorial Day to Labor Day each year.
2. Pembina State Museum - Pembina
This awesome museum is located out in one of the oldest towns in North Dakota, so as you'd imagine there is lots of history here. Not only that, but the museum has an amazing observation deck that goes high in the sky with an incredible view. The museum is free to enter, however a trip up the tower does cost money - but only $2 per adult, and even less for children. There is tons of other things to see in the main area at no charge, all tying back to the state's extensive history.
The Pembina State Museum is located at 805 ND-59, Pembina, ND 58271.
3. Barnes County Historical Society Museum - Valley City
This entirely free museum is located in the historic, bridge-filled Valley City. Not only can you find a lot of information and displays about the city, its bridges, the people that have lived there and what they had in their lifetimes all those decades ago, but even a triceratops. It originally was home to Bob the triceratops, one of the largest and most complete triceratops skeletons ever found and assembled. It was found in North Dakota and made its home in this museum first and for a time before moving on to another museum elsewhere. However, Gundy, another triceratops dinosaur fossil, has taken Bob's place and keeps people coming back to see it - and you can, too, for free!
The Barnes County Historical Society Museum is located at 315 Central Ave. N, Valley City, ND 58072.
4. North Dakota State Railroad Museum - Mandan
The Roughrider State's history is deeply intertwined with the railroad, so a railroad museum is a fantastic way to learn not only about trains but about the state. Luckily for us North Dakotans, there is a free museum to visit right in Mandan. You can walk the grounds outside and see actual train locomotives, cars, mini trains and tracks to ride on, or head into some of the buildings to see even more train history there. Even if you're not a train enthusiast, you can easily enjoy a visit here.
The North Dakota State Railroad Museum is located at 3102 37th St. NW, Mandan, ND 58554. It is open throughout Memorial Day to Labor Day each year.
5. Fort Union Trading Post - Williston
The Fort Union Trading Post is so much more than your average museum. It is like truly stepping back in time and experiencing what this place would have been like over a century ago. The fort consists of quite a few buildings, fort walls, towers, teepees, cannons, and more. Plus, it is located in a beautiful spot right along the Missouri River. This is a fun one to visit not only for the artifacts and structures, but also the natural scenery - and it's all free.
The Fort Union Trading Post is located at 15550 Highway 1804, Williston, ND 58801.
6. North Dakota Heritage Center - Bismarck
Did you know that the North Dakota Heritage Center, a museum right on the capitol grounds in Bismarck, is free to visit? This large museum has pretty much everything in the state's history. From the days of the dinosaurs to when the land was being settled by immigrants, you can learn about it all for no cost.
The North Dakota Heritage Center is located at 612 E Boulevard Ave., Bismarck, ND 58505.
North Dakota has so much history to delve into, and the other best way to learn about it for free is to look back at old photography. Luckily for us, there have been hundreds of photos taken in the state over the years.
Here are just a few to get you started!