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A Summer Day in History: The Ames Farm House Museum
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A Summer Day in History: The Ames Farm House Museum

AMES-- One of the most iconic buildings on Iowa State University’s campus is the Farm House Museum. As well as being the oldest building on campus – constructed in 1860 – the Farm House has objects and stories from Iowa State’s past. Let this be a destination spot or add it to your list of stops while you visit the beautiful ISU campus, this summer!

Once you walk in the front door, you’re transported to a different time. At the turn of the 20th century, two gentlemen and their families lived in the house. The two men – James Wilson and Charles Curtiss – made such an enormous impact on Iowa State and the agricultural industry that we chose to have the museum reflect this time period. Come walk through the rooms, furnished with 19th and early-20th century décor, and really feel what it was like living in the early years of Iowa State University.

The Farm House Museum has over 12,000 objects in it and each has its own story. You can spend 10 minutes or 4 hours listening to our friendly staff regale you with the wonderful tales of Iowa State and our country’s past. From the original radiators to the collection of Art Nouveaux and Tiffany lamps, there is something for everyone to enjoy. One way to get a taste for the objects in the house is through our undergraduates Interns’ blog! Then, see if you can spot these objects in the house.

When you arrive on campus, parking is available in the East Parking Deck or the Commuter Lot south of campus. Find the Farm House Lane and you’re sure to see the house! Farm House Museum is open Monday through Friday from 12 to 4 p.m. (closed on holiday’s and University breaks) and we love visitors!

If you’re looking for a fun afternoon full of stories, wonderful objects from history, and some iced cold lemonade, the Farm House Museum is your #1 stop this summer in Ames!

Looking for more free museums to visit? Consider visiting the Christian Petersen Art Museum from now until July 15th (Mon.-Fri. 11AM to 4PM, closed weekends and holiday’s) for a look at how Iowa State came to be nationally recognized as a beautiful campus. A short walk from campus in the Iowa State Center is the Brunnier Art Museum, home to the Iowa Quester Glass Collection and through July the landscape paintings of Gary Bowling. (Tues. – Fri. 11AM-4PM; Sat. – Sun. 1PM-4PM, closed holidays and Monday’s).



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  1. Travel Iowa Team
    Travel Iowa Team
    Fun, fascinating stuff! Thanks for contributing to the Travel Iowa blog!
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