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Durham Western Heritage Museum

The Durham Western Heritage Museum is a historic museum that first opened in 1931 and is located in Omaha, Nebraska. The museum aims to collect, preserve, interpret, and exhibit historical and cultural artifacts pertaining to the history and development of the nation's western regions. The museum’s exhibits help the people to know details about Omaha's neighborhoods, prominent citizens and interesting historical sites. The Main Waiting Room is the focus of the museum. It boasts life-size sculptures, a multimedia presentation featuring the history of Omaha and the surrounding area, an 85-foot-long model train set, and a permanent exhibit about the Union Pacific Railroad. The renovated art deco building provides an exquisite look at Omaha's history. The museum offers unique, hands-on learning for people of all ages. The building which houses the Durham Western Heritage Museum was designed by Gilbert Stanley Underwood and used to be known as Union Station. It was built to be a showpiece of the city and served as the headquarters of the railroad. In 1972, when the passenger travel stopped, Union Pacific Railroad donated the building to the City of Omaha. In 1975, the building was re-opened as the Western Heritage Museum. The museum was re-named Durham Western Heritage Museum in 1997, to honor Charles Durham, a major contributor and supporter. Durham Western Heritage Museum was named as an affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution in October 2002. This helps the museum to have access to Smithsonian artifacts on a long term loan basis and serve as a drawing card for visitors.