Last updated: 4/25/2013
Lamar, Colorado
Street Address
7515 U.S. Highway 50
Lamar, CO 81052
Mailing Address
P.O. Box 362
Lamar, CO 81052
Hours
Winter:
Tuesday - Saturday1 PM - 4 PM
Sunday - Mondayclosed
Summer:
Tuesday - Saturday10 AM - 5 PM
Sunday - Mondayclosed
Admissions
$3.00 per person
$5.00 per family
$2.00 each for groups over 10
All students and student age groups free.
Staff
Kathleen Scranton, Curator
phone: 719-336-2472
Caroline Hedge, Staff
phone: 719-336-2472
Description

The legal history of this land goes back to before this was Prowers County when 1865 as part of a treaty between the United States government and the Cheyenne and Arapahoe tribes, this became part of a 640 acre parcel of land known as Indian Claim No. 26.

Big Timbers Museum is named for a stand of huge cottonwood trees that grew along the Arkansas River. The cottonwoods stood along a buffalo migratory route and were a welcome site to Native Americans, pioneers, army units, and traders.

The grove of cottonwoods was considered so significant to the history of the area that this spot was chosen by the Daughters of the American Revolution as the location for the National Madonna of the Trails Monument.

The building that the collection is housed in was erected by the American Telephone and Telegraph Company. It housed repeater equipment for the company's Denver-Kansas City long distance lines from 1929 to 1966 at which time the old open lines were discontinued and the new Coaxial Trans-Continental Cable was put into service. After the equipment was removed in 1966, the A.T. & T. Company donated the building to the Prowers County Historical Society for use as a museum. The collection and artifacts belong to the Prowers County Historical Society. The building is owned and staffed by Prowers County.

History

After the equiptment was removed in 1966, the A.T. & T. Company donated the building to the Prowers County Historical Society for use as a museum. The collection and artifacts belong to the Prowers County Historical Society. The building is owned and staffed by Prowers County.

Big Timbers Museum provides the public with a place to give or loan items of historic value for safekeeping and for the enjoyment and education of others. We receive artifacts and records as gifts and loans that are relevant to Prowers County history from the local area, within the state of Colorado, and occasionally from further away.

Artifact Collections

The Big Timbers Museum collection focuses on the history and legacy of Southeastern Colorado. Displays include artifacts from Native Americans, homesteaders,farming, ranching, the railroad, churches, schools, organizations, and family histories.

The Fleagle Bank Robbery exhibit chronicles the first case in 1928 of a SINGLE fingerprint being used to prosecute a case This crime was so famous that it is cited as being the source for the Walt Disney characters and arch villains of Scrooge McDuck known as the Beagle Brothers. Cartoonist Al Capp, in his comic strip “Lil Abner” dubbed one of the villains “Evil-eye Fleagle” after Jake Fleagle, the leader of the gang.

The museum houses one of Colorado’s most extensive WWI poster collections and displays war memorabilia including an original 10 star Confederate Battle Flag from the Civil War captured on the battlefield.

Doc Johnson, a geologist; who traveled the world collecting rocks left his personal collection to the museum and it is a favorite of all ages. Many of specimens are local finds.

Big Timbers Museum exhibits several noteworth garments in the textile collection. Among them is a wedding gown from the House of Worth, the famous 19th century designer Charles Frederick Worth, who is credited with starting haute couture. His design house was the first to sew labels into frocks identifying the designer. A trousseau dress by Worth is also on display at the museum, as are other wedding dresses through the ages.

We now have a six case display of artifacts from Sand Creek, loaned by the Bowen family. These are from their ranch, which was located on one side of the official site. Items include arrowheads, bullets, cannonball fragments, campsite artifacts and informational panels.

Research Collections

Records/Archives/Newspapers

Bound Volumes of Prowers County newspapers from the last 100 years are housed at Big Timbers Museum. In addition, there is an extensive archive of local families and history.

Educational Programs

Art & Artifacts Summer Day Camp Tours offered for all visitors. Lectures by appointment.
Host meetings w/tours.

  • Art & Artifacts Summer Day Camp.
  • Tours offered for all visitors.
  • Lectures by appointment.
  • Host meetings w/tours.
Library

Access: General Public

Appointment required: Yes

Publications

No publications.
Press releases in local newspapers.

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MUSEUM CONFERENCES
Wednesday, September 1 - Thursday, September 30, 2021 — Virtual
CANCELLED: Florida Association of Museums 2021 Annual Conference
Monday, September 20 - Sunday, September 26, 2021 — Virtual
American Craft Council (ACC) Atlanta Southeast Craft Week
Wednesday, September 22 - Saturday, September 25, 2021 — Virtual
American Association for State and Local History/AMA 2021 Annual Meeting
Friday, October 1 - Sunday, October 31, 2021 — Virtual
Arriving this October: The Western Museum Association Roadshow!
Wednesday, October 6 - Friday, October 8, 2021 — Virginia City, Nevada
Nevada Museum Association 2021 Annual Conference
Virginia City, Nevada
Monday, November 29 - Wednesday, December 1, 2021 — Washington, District of Columbia
2021 International Conference of Indigenous Archives, Libraries, and Museums
Washington, District of Columbia
Sunday, March 6 - Thursday, March 10, 2022 — St. Louis, Missouri
2022 Public Land Alliance Convention and Trade Show
St. Louis, Missouri