Museums Along the Mother Road

ILLINOIS

1932 Standard Oil Station, Odell, Illinois

This 1932 Standard Oil Station now serves as a Route 66 Visitor’s Center in Odell,
Illinois, September, 2004, Kathy Weiser. Click for prints and products.

Route 66 Hall of Fame and Museum – Open Mon-Fri 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.; Sat – Sun 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. (April – October); Mon – Fri 11 a.m. – 3 p.m.; Saturday – Sunday 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. (Nov -March). 110 W. Howard Street, Pontiac, IL. 61764, 800-835-2055 or 815-844-IL66.

Historic Odell Standard Oil Gasoline Station – The historic Odell Standard Oil Gasoline Station is open daily from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Plenty of souvenirs will be available and if the station is closed at the time you visit a brief recorded audio history is still available. Odell Tourism & Community Development, Odell, Illinois 60460, 815-998-2133

Illinois State Museum – On the south side of the State Capitol complex, you can visit the Illinois State Museum which displays permanent and changing exhibits of Illinois’ people, life, land and art. Spring & Edwards Streets, Springfield, Illinois 62706-5000. 217-782-7386

Joliet Historical Museum – Museum celebrating the themes and experiences of the people who settled the Joliet area, including a Route 66 Welcome Center, exhibit gallery, discovery room, gift shop, café and auditorium.  204 N. Ottawa Street, Joliet, Illinois, 815-9723-5201.

MISSOURI

National Museum of Transportation – Displays one of the largest collections of transportation vehicles in the world, including cars, fire trucks, trolleys, locomotives, and even an airplane or two. The museum also displays a unit of the historic Coral Court Motel, once located along Route 66. 3015 Barrett Station Road, St. Louis, Missouri, 314-965-6885.

Powers Museum – Local history museum featuring rotating exhibits on Carthage and Missouri history. The museum offers a gift shop, media presentations and a research library by appointment. Driving instructions for Route 66 in Jasper County always available on site. Admission free, donations accepted. 1617 West Oak, P.O. Box 593, Carthage, Missouri 64836, 417-358-2667.

St. Louis Car Museum – The only museum where you can leave with the exhibits! It’s the largest car museum in the Midwest, with over 150 cars displayed in a showroom that covers 55,000 square feet. The collection is constantly changing with additions from private collections and others offered for sale by their owners. We don’t just show our cars, we sell them, too. Fans of Route 66 will love our huge gift shop, exclusively devoted to car memorabilia. Stop by and take home a piece of the history of the American highways. 1575 Woodson Road, St. Louis, Missouri 63114, 314-993-1330

KANSAS

Baxter Springs Heritage Center Museum – 740 East Avenue, P.O. Box 514, Baxter Springs Kansas 66713, 620-856-2385

Route 66 Museum, Clinton Oklahoma

Route 66 Museum in Clinton, Oklahoma.

OKLAHOMA

Canadian County Museum – The Canadian County Museum is rated as one of the outstanding museums in Oklahoma. Located in El Reno’s Heritage Park, the grounds sit on the 98th meridian, which divided the unassigned lands in central Oklahoma from the Cheyenne and Arapaho lands in western Oklahoma. The main museum is housed in the fully restored old Rock Island Depot. The museum grounds house a number of historic buildings from the first Red Cross Canteen in the nation to General Sheridan’s cabin, the oldest standing structure in Canadian County. Free Admission, donations accepted. 300 So. Grand, El Reno, Oklahoma, 73036

National Route 66 Museum – The National Route 66 Museum uses a road motif to allow visitors to travel through all eight states along Route 66 “The Mother Road“. The trip begins in Chicago and ends in California. Murals and different vignettes depict the eras of the road and the interesting places that made Route 66 so famous. As you travel along, you can listen to recorded histories and personal accounts of the road from overhead audio kiosks. P. O. Box 5, Elk City, Oklahoma 73648 (580) 225-6266.

Oklahoma Route 66 Museum – The museum contains six decades of Route 66 history and exhibits that include vehicles, artifacts, photographs, and a video, as well as a gift shop. Admission charged. 2229 W. Gary Blvd., Clinton, Oklahoma, 580-323-7866.

TEXAS

Devil’s Rope Museum/Texas Route 66 Exhibit – Devil’s rope means barbed wire. The Devil’s Rope Museum features the history of barbed wire, its artifacts, the significance of the invention, and the impact on the development of the Old West. The museum also features information about Texas Route 66, the City of McLean and other nearby areas. The museum is also the headquarters of the Texas Historic Route 66 Association and the first Mother Road museum on the route. 806-779-2225, 100 S. Kingsley Street at the east end of downtown, McLean, Texas.

NEW MEXICO

Route 66 Auto Museum – 2766 Route 66, a mile west of east I-40 and U.S. 66/54-85 interchange. (505) 472-1966. Santa RosaNew Mexico.

Tucumcari Historical Museum – Historic Route 66 Exhibit, Indian artifacts, farming and ranching exhibits, and early town memorabilia. 416 S. Adams; Tucumcari, New Mexico 88401, 505-461-4201

Power House Museum - Jim Hinckley

Neon inside the Powerhouse Museum in Kingman Arizona. Photo by Jim Hinckley. Click for prints & products.

ARIZONA

Powerhouse Route 66 Museum & Visitor Center – The Route 66 Museum depicts the historical evolution of travel along the 35th parallel that became Route 66. Our brilliant murals, photos and life-size dioramas capture each of the groups that have traveled the route that has come to be known as the Mother Road. Open daily, admission charged. 120 West Andy Devine Ave., KingmanArizona 86401, 928-753-9889

CALIFORNIA  

California Route 66 Museum – The California Route 66 Museum maintains and displays a collection of historic photographs and artifacts related to the history of Route 66 and its communities. The displays include automotive history, cultural and economic impact as well as the development of the highway itself. Exhibitions incorporate corresponding topics such as early pioneer trails and the railroad. Our exhibitions are constantly changing and rotating throughout the year so come back often to see what’s new. 6825 D Street.  Between 5th and 6th Streets (Old Route 66). P.O. Box 2151, Victorville, California 92393, (760) 951-0436.

Daggett Museum – A small town just east of Barstow, this is a charming museum that is often missed by Route 66 travelers. 33703 Second Street,Daggett, California 92827

Route 66 Postcard Color Book

Route 66 Postcard Color Book, available at Legends General Store.

McDonalds Route 66 Museum – Two Museums in one! San Bernardino, California. Historic site of the first McDonald’s Restaurant. Host to McDonalds memorabilia and exhibits and the Route 66 Museum. New home of the California Historic Route 66 Association. A kitschy new attraction on Route 66. 1398 North “E” Street, San Bernardino, California 924905. Phone: (909) 885-6324. Hours: 10AM to 5PM Daily. Admission: Free

Mojave River Valley Museum – Exit I-15 at Barstow Road. Go north one block. Open 7 days a week from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Admission is free. 270 E. Virginia Way, BarstowCalifornia 92311. (760) 256-5452

Route 66 Mother Road Museum – Located in the Historic Harvey House, 681 N. First Ave., Barstow, California 92311, 760-255-1890

Route 66 Territory Museum – History and artifacts of the famous highway are displayed in photos, exhibits, and memorabilia. 7965 Vineyard Ave., Ste. F-5, Rancho Cucamonga, California. Phone: 909-948-9166.

Compiled and edited by Kathy Weiser/Legends of America, updated April, 2017.

See all our Route 66 Photo Galleries HERE

Also See:

Route 66 (main page)

Route 66 Information & History

Route 66 Facts and Trivia

Route 66 Associations

Destinations

 

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