History Comes to Life at Frazier Museum

by Pam on July 9, 2014

  • Did you know Abraham Lincoln was the only president also to be a licensed bartender?
  • Or  glasses with pink lens were used to treat depression during the Civil War? This lead to the expression, “See the World through rose-colored glasses,” still in use today.

Frazier Museum


History the way it was meant to be told” is the motto of the Frazier museum.   How many times in school did we sit through dry, stuffy lectures explaining the past in the most boring way possible? (In my case, the answer is plenty.)  The past is a fascinating journey, with colorful characters, and the Frazier museum brings it to life, spanning continents and thousands of years in a single museum.  We began our journey into the past in the Royal Armouries, beginning with a replica of the Battle of Hastings, fought in 1066.  The authentic and reproduction weapons, with detailed explanations,  fascinated the history buffs in the family.  My attention, however, was caught by a museum employee, dressed in a classic British uniform, wheeled out a cart filled with (replicas of) various helmets and chain mail from ancient Rome to the Middle Ages. He answered our questions and allowed us to try on the helmets and chain mail, describing the pros and cons of each piece. Having never tried on chain mail before, I was surprised at how heavy it was. When we were shown the arrow that could pierce through the links in the chain mail, he explained how “one of these arrows could cause us to have a bad day on the battlefield.”
Frazier History Museum

As fascinating as this era was, the American West exhibit had more treasures.  Where else can you see the family Bible of the legendary pioneer Daniel Boone or the ivory handled Colt pistols reported to belong to the ill-fated General Custer? Because Jessie James and his gang once rode onto the family farm of one of my ancestors and stayed for dinner, I spent time reading about the gang’s adventures, beginning from their history as a group of raiders during the Civil War and continuing into their crime spree and Jessie Jame’s eventual death.   My son was amazed at the poster for the Pony Express,  ”Young, skinny, wiry fellows wanted. Not over 18.  Must be expert riders, willing to risk death daily. Orphans preferred.”  (How’s that for a job description you would not want?)

Boone Family Bible

The Boone Family Bible.

Before leaving the museum, stop to see the collection of over 10,000 toy soldiers from around the world, making it the largest public display of toy soldiers in the US.  There are more than 5000 permanent artifacts housed in the museum, with an ever changing collection of temporary exhibits.  We spent three hours at the museum and could have looked for hours longer without being able to examine everything.   I wasn’t sure if it would keep younger children entertained, but I was wrong.  There were several families with elementary aged children in the museum who were studying the exhibits and asking questions.   This museum is one every member of the family will enjoy.
Frazier Museum

If you go:

  • The Frazier Museum is open Monday through Saturday from 9 AM to 5 PM and on Sundays from 12 PM to 5 PM.
  • The cost of admission is $10.50 for adults, $7.50 for students 14-17, $6 for children ages 6-13 and ages 4 and under are free.
  • Be sure to watch for the daily historical interpretations which features demonstrations with employees in period costume 
  • and “touch carts,” which allow everyone the opportunity to experience hands-on history.
  • The Museum is located on West Main Street in Louisville, Kentucky, a short walk from the Galt House Hotel.  

 

We received complementary passes to the Frazier Museum. All opinions are my own.

 

{ 47 comments… read them below or add one }

Christine Luken July 9, 2014 at 8:43 am

Looks like a fun museum! And no, I did not know that Abraham Lincoln was the only president also to be a licensed bartender!

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Robin (Masshole Mommy) July 9, 2014 at 8:51 am

I didn’t know that about Old Abe, either. What a cool fun fact.

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Debbie L. July 9, 2014 at 8:50 am

Oh My Gosh…I have been to Louisville 100′s of times and I have never realized this great museum was there. I used to travel for work a lot and always stayed at the Brown in Louisville. On my next visit I will definitely visit this museum. The fact about the rose colored glasses is neat. Since I am always upbeat my hubby says I got through life wearing rose colored glasses. I will have to tell him where that phrase originated! So Funny!!

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Robin (Masshole Mommy) July 9, 2014 at 8:51 am

I love museums like this. There is so much to learn in places like this.

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Jenn @TheRebelChick July 9, 2014 at 9:15 am

What an awesome museum! I bet I would have a blast spending a day there!

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Dee July 9, 2014 at 9:24 am

I love getting lost in museums – so much to learn and see!

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maria @ close tohome July 9, 2014 at 6:31 pm

I know I have not taken my kids yet this summer, we need to get on the band wagon

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Amber Edwards July 9, 2014 at 10:03 am

I absolutely love museums! They are fun and educational at the same time! I’m lucky that my kids love them too. The Frazier museum looks like a lot of fun!

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mer July 9, 2014 at 10:07 am

I love the fact about abe lincoln! Sounds like a fun museum for kids and adults alike!

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Courtney July 9, 2014 at 10:41 am

I love museums, and this one looks like a great find. My favorite things to find in museums are life size replicas of animals, objects, and events. It just makes it so much more immersive.

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Jennifer July 9, 2014 at 10:42 am

What a great museum. It looks like a great time. The life sized replicas are my favorite. They make me feel like I’m actually there.

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Daisy July 9, 2014 at 10:56 am

I want to take my son here. It looks like he would have fun and it would be educational. I really like how much detail they put into the displays.

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Debbie Denny July 9, 2014 at 11:58 am

Did not know that about Lincoln. This looks like an awesome place to visit. I would love to see it.

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Laura (Lauras Little House Tips) July 9, 2014 at 12:08 pm

What a wonderful place. I would of been memorized by the old family bible. I just love the rich history and how those bibles tell a story of so many lives. I would love to visit the Frazier Museum. The old car is too cool :) Thanks for sharing.

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MommaDJane July 9, 2014 at 12:43 pm

The cost of admission is extremely reasonable. I know I would love to take my son to this.

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Dawn Lopez July 9, 2014 at 2:09 pm

Wow, this looks like an incredible place to visit! Love the quirky history lesson, I really need to plan a visit soon!

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Nolie July 9, 2014 at 2:16 pm

Interesting fact about the pink glasses. Makes sense now.

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Ellen Christian July 9, 2014 at 2:17 pm

What fun. I’d definitely like to visit. I love historic attractions.

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candice July 9, 2014 at 2:33 pm

10,000 toy soldiers! thats incredible!

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Tammi @ My Organized Chaos July 9, 2014 at 3:07 pm

I had no idea! Wow, I need to visit this one soon, you could learn all sorts of stuff!

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Nicole Brady July 9, 2014 at 4:04 pm

What an awesome museum. I want to go!! I think I would end up spending all day asking the employee questions and trying on the garb. So would my 11 year old daughter… she took a Medieval Times class during her summer camp and LOVED it.

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Mama to 5 BLessings July 9, 2014 at 4:36 pm

Looks like a really cool museum, we just learned about Daniel Boone in our homeschooling!

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shari July 9, 2014 at 4:58 pm

this looks amazing and like something i will definitely be trying!

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Jen V July 9, 2014 at 5:57 pm

I had never heard of the Frazier Museum before but it looks like a wonderful place to visit. It’s only a couple of hours from us. We may have to make a road trip there sometime.

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Ann Bacciaglia July 9, 2014 at 6:22 pm

I love the trivia you shared. I have no idea that is where the expression about rose coloured glasses came from! Thanks for sharing.

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Aimee Smith July 9, 2014 at 6:30 pm

This place looks awesome! I am such a sucker for fun trivia!

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Angela S July 9, 2014 at 6:33 pm

This is a place I would like to visit with my son. He would love this museum!

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Lois Alter Mark July 9, 2014 at 6:44 pm

Love these fun facts and the museum sounds great! If they taught history this way, I bet we’d all be way smarter!

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kristin July 9, 2014 at 7:16 pm

Wow how fun. I just love resources like this.

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Kelsey Apley July 9, 2014 at 7:26 pm

What a fun museum, I think my husband and I would love to visit this, sounds really awesome!

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Melanie Roberts July 9, 2014 at 7:43 pm

This looks like a great museum, love that it comes to life, that makes it that more interesting, sooo have to add this to my bucket list to see in person one day; thanks for sharing

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Annie {Stowed Stuff} July 9, 2014 at 8:15 pm

Looks like a fun museum worth visiting! The touch carts are pretty cool for the kids!

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Amy July 9, 2014 at 8:23 pm

Oh wow, that museum is really lively and not at all boring! My kids would enjoy it!

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Liz Mays July 9, 2014 at 10:34 pm

I despised history in school, but I love things like this now. It’s the only way I appreciate history. I’d love to go.

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Mama to 5 BLessings July 9, 2014 at 10:40 pm

As a Christian I would have loved to see that Bible up close, what an amazing experience!

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valmg @ Mom Knows It All July 9, 2014 at 10:51 pm

It sounds terrific! It’d be perfect for history buffs!

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Marina @ Mommy Snippets July 9, 2014 at 11:30 pm

How fun!! Looks like a great educational trip too.

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Lexie Lane July 9, 2014 at 11:37 pm

I love historical places or anything that shows you anything about history. Love these pics

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tammileetips July 10, 2014 at 2:07 am

That looks like a great museum!! I love American history!!

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Danielle July 10, 2014 at 2:12 am

Wow, what an incredible display! I love the old car.

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Amanda July 10, 2014 at 7:36 am

Looks like a great museum for a history buff. Very realistic statues!

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Shauna July 10, 2014 at 8:48 am

of this is awesome. I am one of those people who learns so much more by going to museums than by reading in a book. Hubby is also a huge History fan!

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Sarah @ Must Have Mom July 10, 2014 at 4:26 pm

This looks like soo much fun! I love interactive museums like this.

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Elizabeth Towns July 10, 2014 at 7:43 pm

What an interesting place to visit, bringing history to life with great insights and clarity. I can see myself spending time there with my family.

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Onica {MommyFactor} July 11, 2014 at 9:45 am

I would like to take my family here. Such an amazing place with to visit. Really interesting exhibits.

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Racquel July 11, 2014 at 8:04 pm

This looks like a great place to visit. My children love places like this.

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Nancy @ Whispered Inspirations July 14, 2014 at 3:47 pm

This looks like so much fun!!! :) I love museums.

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