Museum Exhibits

The Riley County Museum offers various exhibits for the public to view that are all free of charge.

Riley County Historical Museum Current Exhibits

"The Land and the People"-

 Learn about Riley County’s founding and the unique stories of its history.

"Celebrating a Century of History and Heritage: The Riley County Historical Museum" -

This exhibit showcases over one-hundred artifacts and photographs significant to the history of the Riley County community. Some of these notable objects include a section of the original seating from the Wareham Opera House, a penny-farthing bicycle owned by Guy Varney, and a hand-carved sunflower clock made from local wood for the World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago in 1893. 

"Service over There, Support over Here: World War I and Riley County" - 

In this exhibit, learn about the unique stories of soldiers from Riley County and the community’s response to the War through a variety of artifacts, documents, and photographs. One of the most prominent objects on display is the large service plaque (also known as the service flag) created in 1918 with the hand-painted names of 1,009 Riley Countians who served during the War. Many relatives of the individuals listed on the plaque still reside in Riley County today.

Temporary Outreach Exhibits in Riley County

"Honorable Richard Dean Rogers: A Life of Service"

Through this exhibit, we honor the life of the late Judge Richard Dean Rogers, who served the Manhattan, Riley County, and Kansas community throughout his lifetime. Judge Rogers was a decorated World War II veteran, Manhattan City Commissioner, two-term mayor of Manhattan, member of both chambers of the Kansas Legislature, and nominated by President Gerald Ford to the United States District Court for the District of Kansas. This exhibit is available for viewing at the Riley County Courthouse and open normal business hours 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. 

"The Food Explorer of Riley County"

Learn about David Grandison Fairchild, an 1888 Kansas State Agricultural College graduate, and his explorations around the world that helped introduce more than 200,000 exotic plants and varieties of established crops into the United States. This includes the gift of cherry blossom trees from Japan that surround the Tidal Basin in Washington, D.C. today. Inspired by the book Food Explorer by Daniel Stone (2018), this exhibit provides a brief overview into the exciting life of Fairchild and his connections to Riley County. 

Also visit our other historical sites.

Presentations on Exhibits

"The Woman’s Reason: The Women’s Suffrage Movement in Riley County, KS"

Past Exhibits

Click here to see some of the museum’s past exhibits!