Current Exhibits

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Byron Reed Gallery

Public Opinion is More Than Law: The First Murder Brought to Court in the Nebraska Territory

Now – March 8, 2020

Charles A. Henry

Portrait of Charles A. Henry, c. 1860, Illustrated by Morton, Watkins, and Miller Courtesy of History of Nebraska

This exhibition was developed by Durham Museum intern and University of Iowa graduate, Allison Buser.

On April 3, 1855 Charles A. Henry shot George Hollister near the town of Bellevue, shocking the residents of the newly established Nebraska Territory. Highlighting objects from the Byron Reed Collection, this exhibit chronicles the course of events from Hollister’s death through Henry’s unusual court case and examines the public’s role in the outcome of the legal proceedings. The incident illustrates the struggle to carry out legitimate justice in the territory amidst settler notions of popular sovereignty, which sometimes interfered with the early judicial system.


SOUND THE ALARM: THE MAKING OF THE OMAHA FIRE DEPARTMENT

Now – March 8, 2020

Sound the Alarm

Charles Derwent, Membership Certificate in the Pioneer Hook and Ladder Company, November 3, 1868
The Byron Reed Collection, BRTEMP652

This exhibition was developed by Durham Museum intern and Creighton University graduate, Alisha Baginski.

The Omaha Fire Department traces its roots to 1860 when the city’s first firefighting company was founded. Called the Pioneer Hook and Ladder Company, these men battled fires through muddy, unpaved streets, hand-carrying buckets of water. In its 25 years of operation, the company evolved, added more stations, held annual parades in honor of the firefighters, formed a Fireman’s Benevolent Association with neighboring towns and more. Using documents from the Byron Reed Collection this exhibit chronicles the Omaha Fire Department’s late 19th century beginnings.


ADMISSION

Adults: $11.00
Seniors (62+): $8.00
Children (ages 3 – 12): $7.00
Children 2 years and under FREE

Members: FREE!

New! Purchase tickets ahead of time.

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Some dates have been blacked-out from online purchases due to special events or holidays.

Sorry – no refunds on online admission purchases.

 

Omaha Union Station
Photo Archive Gallery
Jobber’s Canyon: Omaha’s Lost History

Now-January 26, 2020

This exhibition was developed by Durham Museum intern and University of Nebraska at Omaha undergraduate, Adam Barritt.

Omaha’s “Jobbers Canyon” was a recognized historic district placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1987. It was demolished in 1988-89 to clear land for the building of the Conagra Brand’s headquarters and is to date one of the largest “lost” historic districts in United States’ history. The Nash Block Building is the last remaining structure from this iconic part of Omaha’s history.
This local focus exhibition uses images from the museum’s Photo Archive to resurrect nine of the businesses and buildings that made this area of Omaha so unique.

Photo: Jobber’s Canyon Street View | April 1929 | The Bostwick-Frohardt /KM3TV Collection
The Durham Museum Photo Archive | BF61-149

Jobber's Canyon
Education Alley

Taking it to the Streets: Grading Downtown Omaha

NOW – June 21, 2020

Grading Downtown

House on the Edge, Douglas Street, 1891, Bostwick-Frohardt/KM3TV Collection, The Durham Museum Photo Archive, BF14-254(04)

To combat six major hills in downtown Omaha the city undertook extensive street projects to lower inclines. This work was done throughout the 1880s–1920s with the largest of the projects being the grading of Dodge Street in 1920. In some locations, buildings were brought down to a new level 18 feet lower than the original foundation. Tempers ran high between neighbors going mad with the constant noise, businesses and homes being literally uprooted and some downtown residents even suing the city for damages and lack of sleep. In the end, the grading of Dodge Street cost over one million dollars and moved over 300,000 cubic yards of dirt. Through this photography exhibit, see what all the fuss was about and how times have changed the streets of downtown Omaha.