Lake Wales History Museum

The Lake Wales History Museum was established in 1976, and since that time, the museum has evolved into an interpretive resource center for the public and the community’s repository of historical and cultural collections. The museum offers permanent and traveling exhibits, educational programs, and heritage events and festivals, and maintains a collection of an estimated 20,000 objects, photographs, documents and books.  The main museum is located in the 1928 Atlantic Coast Line Railroad station, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The physical buildings span one acre of property, about a quarter of a mile along the historic Scenic Highway known as the museum’s historic corridor. The museum is owned and operated by the City of Lake Wales.

The mission of the museum is to collect, preserve and share the heritage of Lake Wales, which was officially approved and adopted by the City of Lake Wales City Commission as part of our strategic plan on November 20, 2018. The museum employees two full time staff members and works with 25 volunteers who donated 888 hours in 2019. An annual segregated and itemized budget is prepared for the museum as part of the City’s annual budget. The Library and Historical Resources advisory board approves policies for the museum.

The museum is open free of charge from Wednesday – Saturday, from 10 AM – 5 PM, and offers visitors a selfguided experience through historical displays, traveling exhibits, and authentic train cars. Community programs and events include the museum’s signature annual Pioneer Days Festival, national and locallycurated changing exhibits, speakers, book club, receptions, and family programs. Field trips are offered for K-12th grade school groups on a regular basis. Individuals and students older than 14 years of age are welcome to participate in our volunteer program who actively work on collections, special events and visitor services.





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