Visiting the history museum, located in, and focusing on Mobile, Alabama, allows locals as well as visitors from outside the area to learn about the appreciate the history, culture, and art from the area. With a collection of historic artifacts, hands on experiences, and other galleries, visitors will see something new each time they visit.
Cannon - The gallery, roughly 700 feet in size, that houses this Civil War memorabilia allows museum guests to get an up-close look at one of the eight original cannons that were in operation on the CSS commerce raid ship Alabama. Weighing roughly 8,000 pounds (two and a half tons!) and over 10 feet in length, this deck gun/cannon sunk with the ship in the water off the coast of Cherbourg in France after a battle with the Union ship USS Kearsage in 1864.
Inge Gallery - The gallery (named after Mary Jane Slaton/Inge, a longtime museum volunteer) displays some of what many people would consider the “finer things in life,” especially those that have a special prominence in Mobile society. Featuring Baccarat crystal, Boehm porcelain, Limoges china, pieces from some of the oldest “mystic” societies in Mobile, as well as other decorative arts, sculptures, and paintings, a picture of the gallery’s namesake hangs outside the gallery, as if welcoming visitors inside.
Mini House Gallery - Aaron Friedman, famous “Mobilian,” is well-known not only in the area but also throughout the country for his miniature houses. This gallery serves to display the donated houses (originally built for his granddaughters), which are made with exquisite detail to replicate mansions in both Mobile and Alabama states as a whole. Visitors should make sure to pay attention to each detail - they were all created with great craftsmanship as well as lots of love!
New Day (Part One) - This exhibit takes an up close and detail look at the original inhabitants of Mobile, Alabama: Native Americans. Learn about the roughly 300-year history of the area and its inhabitants, journeying through the history of slavery, the Colonial era, World War 2, and the Civil Rights movement as it related to Mobile.
New Day (Part Two) - This exhibit, part two of the Old Ways exhibit, explores the history of Mobile as it relates to the disasters that have hit the area, diversity, the local industries, and recreational activities that the people of Mobile enjoy.
While wandering the museum, visitors should make sure to check out the walls and the hallways as various antiques and artifacts, including furniture and paintings, are located throughout.
The museum offers many special events for both adults and children, which are updated on their website and sent out in their newsletter. Below are a few of the most popular:
Night at the Museum - Held in October, guests can celebrate video games and comic books after hours at the museum. Participants are welcome to dress up as a favorite character. There is a small admission fee, although children five and under are free.
Colonial Day - March at the museum brings an educational event called Colonial Days. Complete with re-enactors, demonstrations, and activities, this event allows visitors to really step back in time and see what it was like for Mobile residents in those days. Trying using a quill pen or doing laundry the old-fashioned way! Admission to this event is free.
In additional to the museum events, the facility is also available to rent for meetings, ceremonies, and receptions. Contact the staff for booking and availability.
School field trips are welcomed at the museum. Available for groups of 10 or more, reserved in advance by contacting the museum, the website offers a full set of educator resources including a guide to what is found inside so that teachers can plan a lesson plan ahead of time. At least one adult chaperone is required for every 10 students and students must follow all museum rules or they will be asked to leave; no food or drink is allowed inside, students are not allowed to be disruptive, etc.
Tours are available Mondays through Fridays from 9am to 4pm. There are divided into multiple programs, all depending on the grade level of the student (preschool through 3rd, 4th through 8th, and 9th through 12th grade) and vary between 30 minutes to an hour and a half. Unless otherwise requested, they are all lead by a museum tour guide. School groups may choose to have lunch in the outdoor courtyard at the museum with advance notice as well.
The History Museum of Mobile, Alabama, 111 South Royal Street, Mobile, AL, 36602, Phone: 251-208-7569