River City History Tours

The past comes alive during River City History Tours at The Durham Museum! River City History Tours are historically accurate, entertaining and share the fascinating history of Omaha. Explore the city’s vibrant past aboard Ollie the Trolley and hear stories from knowledgeable tour guides. Select from six unique tours throughout the season:

  • From Expositions to Jazz MusiciansIn 1898, Omaha hosted the Trans-Mississippi & International Exposition, an event that brought millions to visit Omaha and learn about life west of the Mississippi River. Visit the former site of the expo and see the stately homes, parks and jazz halls that followed in its path. Plus, enjoy a stop at the historic Florence Mill!
  • Last Call for Alcohol By the time prohibition was the law of the land in the U.S., Nebraska had been “dry” for two years and organized crime syndicates had established a well-oiled machine to turn profits. Local and federal authorities spent years putting together a case that ultimately brought down the “kingpin” of Omaha’s crime scene, Tom Dennison. This tour, based on Dennison’s 1931 federal indictment, takes a look at hotels, speakeasys and other key locations in prohibition-era Omaha.
  • Millionaires & Mansions – SouthTake a trip to the early 1900s in the area south of Dodge Street in mid-town Omaha. Many landmarks in the city are located here including the Blackstone Hotel, the Storz Mansion and the home of Arthur and Zerlina Brandeis. Visitors will see the beauty of traditional architecture and hear the stories of the people who built these magnificent homes.
  • Millionaires & Mansions – NorthExplore the neighborhoods north of Dodge Street in mid-town Omaha. Along the way, learn about the Mercer Mansion, Joslyn Castle and the Louis Nash residence. The trolley will drive on the first curved street in the city and visitors will see many stately homes in the original “West Omaha.”
  • Parks & BoulevardsDid you know that Omaha developed a beautiful parks and boulevard system beginning in the late 1800s? In fact, much of this system remains today linking popular parks like Elmwood and Hanscom with gorgeous tree-lined streets such as Happy Hollow and Lincoln Boulevard. The “Parks and Boulevards” tour will take you along the beautiful path these developers laid out so many years ago.
  • Remember the LadiesHop on a trolley with us in honor of the founding ladies of Omaha. This tour will introduce you to a few of Omaha’s first women, from factory workers and business owners to religious leaders and activists, who contributed to the growth and success of Omaha today. Destinations on this tour will include driving through Omaha’s previous “Red Light District”, the Paxton Hotel, Saint Cecelia’s Cathedral, and so much more!

RESERVE YOUR SEAT!

  • Tours cost $25 for museum members and $30 for non-members and all tours last between 90 minutes to 2 hours. Membership discount applies only to those in the household.
  • To reserve a seat, select your tour date in the registration form below or call us at 402-444-5027. Payment is due at the time of reservation.
  • Full refunds will be granted for cancellations requested two weeks in advance.
Meet our Tour Guides

 

Private River City History Tours

Available year-round for groups of up to 42
Grab your friends, co-workers or family members and hit the streets for a private River City History tour. Pick your date and time (subject to availability) and the tour of your choice!

For more information or to schedule a private tour, please contact The Durham Museum Education Department at 402-444-5027 or education@durhammuseum.org.

Tour Registration

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UPCOMING TOURS