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Old Capitol Museum, Iowa City

(4.4/5 based on 100+ reviews on the web)
For more than 150 years, Old Capitol has represented the pioneering spirit of Iowa and The University of Iowa. The last capitol of the Iowa territory, it served as Iowa's first state capitol from 1846 to 1857. When the state government moved to Des Moines in 1857, Old Capitol served as the University's first building and the founding place of many departments.

In 1976, Old Capitol became a National Historic Landmark and public museum. After fours years of recovery from a devastating fire in 2001 that destroyed the building's dome and cupola, Old Capitol Museum reopened in May 2006 as a vital cultural and educational resource for more than 30,000 visitors, researchers, and schoolchildren each year.

The Old Capitol Museum houses a gift shop, an educational Discovery Center where kids can learn about early Iowans with computer inter-actives, the Hanson Family Humanities Gallery, and the Keyes' Gallery for Arts, Humanities, and Sciences. The galleries house changing exhibits year round that explore a wide variety of themes. Throughout the year, the Museum also hosts a variety of lectures, films, workshops, and other educational programs related to its rotating exhibits and Iowa history.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • When I graduated from the University of Iowa several decades ago, the Old Capitol building had not yet been restored to a museum. What a joy to see it now! We attended a Sunday afternoon recital featu...  more »
  • There were no ramps at the old Ioma capitol building. So sad. Gonna go get some Culvers for lunch. Got Culvers, all in all, not a bad day.  more »
  • They're redoing it right now, but it looks amazing! I didn't get the chance to go inside, but loved seeing the outside, very educational!  more »
Google
  • My husband and I just love this historic building. Be sure to check out the Iowa State Supreme Court chambers, some great law was created here.
  • Cool natural history museum with stuffed animals and such. Best is it is free.
  • A beautiful, historic building in the heart of the city. Go now!
  • Was disappointing after doing the Capitol tour in Des Moines. It was good to see as it is part of Iowa history but it was not that impressive.
  • Great place to do rallies !!