"One of the best county museums we've seen" say Diane Eickhoff and Aaron Barnhart in "The Big Divide: A Travel Guide to Historic and Civil War Sites in the Missouri-Kansas Border Region."


The museum will be closed during January and February.
Hours: Tue-Sat 10 am-4 pm, Sun 1 pm-4 pm

Contact Information

135 West Tecumseh
Ottawa, KS 66067
Phone: 785-242-1250

Location Type

Interpretive Signs
Driving Tours

Site Info

AC / Heating
Bus / RV Parking
Group Tours
Research Library
Water Fountain
Wheel Chair Accessible

The Old Depot Museum was built as a passenger depot for the Southern Kansas Railroad in 1888. It served its purpose until 1962, when it was given to the Franklin County Historical Society by the AT&SF railroad. It was opened on July 4, 1963. It features an immersive exhibit on Franklin County's most notorious event, John Brown's Pottawatomie Massacre. Exhibits tell of the residential Chautauqua that graced Forest Park from 1884-1914. An HO model railroad echoes the building's original use. Both permanent and temporary exhibits can be seen as well as such period rooms as a general store, farm kitchen, Victorian parlor and one-room schoolhouse. The Old Depot Museum is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. It is a Star Site among Freedom's Frontier National Heritage Area's partners.

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Hand-colored postcard of Old Depot from the south
Hand-colored postcard of Old Depot from the south
General store exhibit
HO model train layout
Victorian parlor exhibit
Baggage cart exhibit
more photos  1 >
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