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“Surprising New Perspective on a Kearney Staple”

G.W. Frank Museum of History and Culture
Ranked #11 of 23 things to do in Kearney
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: <1 hour
Owner description: Take a walk through Nebraska history! Located in a beautiful Richardsonian Romanesque mansion, the G.W. Frank Museum is part house museum, part history museum, part cultural center. Built in 1890, the opulent home of capitalists George and Phoebe Frank was among the first electrified houses in the American West. Its unique story as a once modern, stylish residence, turned rental property, sanitarium, and tuberculosis hospital offers a window into Kearney’s past – its early rise and fall, and its rebirth as a center for health and education. Exhibits, tours, and programs explore the history and culture of central Nebraska, from the Gilded Age to the present. Learn about the industrialists, factory workers, and domestic servants who experienced Kearney’s rapid boom and bust. Find out what life was like for the doctors, nurses, and thousands of patients at the Nebraska Hospital for Tuberculosis. See the house’s ongoing restoration. Or simply enjoy our rotating displays of Victorian decorative art. There’s something for everyone!
Useful Information: Activities for older children, Bathroom facilities, Wheelchair access, Activities for young children, Stairs / lift
Reviewed 5 June 2017

This is a nice attraction that reflects a side of Kearney history not often explored. This home, a mansion in its day, was built by a real estate speculator who went bust after a few years. Though the lower level of the home showcase's the home at its Victorian peak of elegance (including painstaking restoration of the original wall etchings), the curators and guides also emphasize the structure's role as part of the Tuberculosis Hospital's campus in its later years. It made for a fine visit. Kudos especially to our well-informed student guide; excellent job.

Thank Stuthehistoryguy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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"student guide"
in 3 reviews
"interesting tour"
in 3 reviews
"university of nebraska"
in 5 reviews
"old mansion"
in 2 reviews
"frank family"
in 2 reviews
"original pieces"
in 2 reviews
"beautiful museum"
in 2 reviews
"kearney area"
in 2 reviews
"worth a visit"
in 2 reviews
"donation"
in 7 reviews
"restoration"
in 2 reviews
"century"
in 2 reviews
"west"
in 2 reviews
"visitors"
in 2 reviews
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10 - 14 of 31 reviews

Reviewed 14 May 2017

Most visitors to Kearney probably do not even know about this hidden jewel on the University of Nebraska at Kearney campus. For that matter, most of the locals don't remember to visit this well-kept 19th century mansion, either. It is constructed of red sandstone from Wyoming and, at the time of its construction in the 1890s, was the first house west of the Missouri River to be wired for electricity at the time of its construction. It has exterior walls that are 18 inches thick. The furniture now in the house exemplifies the decor when it was constructed. It is easy to reach on the western edge of the UNK campus, just northwest of the West Center Building.

Thank lawprof3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 March 2017 via mobile

Stopped by on on a Monday (march 27) as most literature said they would be open from 2 to 5. Arrived at 3:00 pm, and they were not open. Sign out front said open Tuesday to Friday. Contradicting sign out back said open Monday to Friday....

Thank Patrick G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Will S, Manager at G.W. Frank Museum of History and Culture, responded to this reviewResponded 8 June 2017

Patrick,

We apologize for the confusion! We just recently changed our hours and were in the middle of getting our signage updated. We are now open Tuesdays-Fridays 1-5pm, and 12-5pm on Saturdays and Sundays.

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Reviewed 22 January 2017

I have gone past this place for years, growing up just 18 miles from it. Back then this was not open to the public. Now it is part of the UNK and open to the public. The first thing I noticed was the woodwork as I entered the main area. I love to explore old homes. So much history and wish the walls could talk and tell their stories. This is one of those houses. Many of the original pieces are there. These are tagged with a red ribbon. The two young girls who were our guides (one was in training) were very knowledgeable about the house. At the time of visiting the top floors were being worked on and eventually the 2nd floor will be open to the public while the 3rd floor is to be for research. The charge is by donation. The grounds are beautifully kept up. Parking is not great and you will need a pass that you get at the house. A friend with me stayed with the car while I went to get the pass. Maybe if we hadn't gone when classes were in going on parking would have been easier. Summer may be a better time for this.

1  Thank Dianna F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Will S, Director at G.W. Frank Museum of History and Culture, responded to this reviewResponded 23 January 2017

Thanks for your review! Your input is very helpful. We are aware that parking is an issue and hope to have a solution soon.

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Reviewed 23 October 2016

This was worth the time we took; pretty area of town. Definitely a pleasant, informative way to spend an hour.

Thank Kathleen J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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