Sunday, June 18, 2017

Arabia Steamboat Kansas City MO

Arabia Collage Geoff Sutton 2017
We are glad we went to see the Arabia Steamboat Museum in Kansas City, Missouri.

The local explorers display tons of buried treasure they found when the excavated this pre-Civil War Steamboat, which sank in 1856. The museum tells the story of the ship and the discovery along with the process of restoration, which the explorers learned as they sought to preserve the contents of the mud-covered horde along with parts of this iconic 1800s boat.

Tons of treasure but only a few cents
We were fortunate to meet two of the explorers who answered questions following the brief introductory video. The film provides an overview and though not like those you will find in the best museums, you get a sense of adventure as you join in the exploration and awesome find. The authenticity comes through in a way that glitzy presentations can not capture.

An award-winning pitcher/ Arabia Steamboat/ Geoff W Sutton 2017

The displays are nicely designed and the lighting is much better than in some museums so you can actually read the inofrmation boards and take decent photos without flash.

Arabia Steamboat Treasure

Many of the items were for sale at area stores so some displays capture life in pioneer days as seen from the perspective of a frontier shop. Whether from the US or elsewhere, the Arabia Steamboat Museum offers a unique glimpse into this segment of Midwestern US history.

Ready for an 1800s store
One exhibit offers a hands-on educational talk on preserving sunken cargo.  There will be more to see in the future. The museum appears full yet there were some 60 of the 200 tons left to explore and restore.
Brief history of the Steamboat
Notes and tips

Check the website for times and more details.
There are clean restrooms near the exit.
There is a museum store on the main floor where you purchase tickets and shop.
The first part of the tour is guided.
Toys and working models make it interesting for young and old.
There are places to sit within the museum.
There's adequate parking neaby.
The area is served by a local city tram.
There are many fine restaurants in the nearby City Market.

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