Henry Ford Museum formally known as the Edison Institute is located in Dearborn, Michigan. The indoor and outdoor museum is also a National Historic Landmark. It is of course named for its founder Henry Ford. Ford wanted a place to preserve items of historical impact whether they were from the Industrial Revolution, famous homes and their belongings, machinery, to anything that had significance relevance to the American people or were a piece of Americana. He said of his museum ‘I am collecting the history of our people as written into things their hands made and used. When we are through, we shall have reproduced American life as lived, and that, I think, is the best way of preserving at least a part of our history and tradition’. That being said, the museum originally began as Ford’s own personal collection which he had started in 1906.
The Henry Ford Museum now sits on 12 acres and is a unique collection that stays true to his more or less mission statement. There’s a vast array with something to pique anyone’s interest and curiosity from the chair that Abraham Lincoln was shot in at the Ford Theater, to Thomas Edison’s laboratory that many of the inventions that are still held in high esteem today were created in, to the tube that allegedly holds the last breath that Thomas Edison exhaled, to the presidential limousine that John F. Kennedy was riding in when he was assassinated. The bus that Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat on has also been lovingly restored after it rested in a field rusting for years. There are also pieces that are pure Americana like the Oscar Mayer Weiner mobile.
The Henry Ford Museum is open 7 days a week from 9:30AM until 5:00PM. The only days that the museum is closed are Thanksgiving and Christmas Day. The ticket prices are $17 for adults and $12.50 for children ages 5-12. Children under 4 are free and seniors receive a discounted ticket. The museum also has a few dining option. The Michigan Café offers regional cuisine that focuses on the Great Lakes. There is also Lamy’s Diner which of course offers diner fare. For a true piece of Americana there is also the Oscar Meyer Wiener Mobile Café which offers a wide array of hot dog concoctions.
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