Experience the Wild West at the National Buffalo Museum
The Great Plains was once home to millions of majestic bison, which thundered across the golden grasslands and roamed freely beneath the big, blue sky. These magnificent beasts played an essential role in the lives of Native Americans, providing all the necessities for life: food, shelter, clothing and even tools. Experience the “wild west” for yourself and learn about the fascinating history and cultural significance of the American bison at the National Buffalo Museum, located within the Frontier Village complex in Jamestown.
Permanent Museum Exhibits
Take a peek into the past as you explore the historic relics and realistic replicas displayed in the rustic log structure of the National Buffalo Museum. See a bison hide tipi replica, 19th-century firearms used by bison hunters and a variety of artwork depicting life on the plains. Marvel at the life-like animal mounts throughout the museum, and see the female bison skeleton that’s estimated to be up to 10,000 years old, as well as a replica of a 47,500-year-old bison skull.
A theater with a 16-minute film about the importance of the American bison — as well as its surprising brush with near-extinction and the 135 years of conservation efforts that have helped the bison thrive once again.
A full-body mount of White Cloud, the beloved albino buffalo that was part of the National Buffalo Museum’s live herd for nearly 20 years, is on display. White buffalo are incredibly rare and are considered sacred to Native Americans. In her life, White Cloud birthed 11 calves, including Dakota Miracle, a white bull that lived in the herd. While at the museum, be sure to stop by the unique gift shop, touting an array of bison-themed gifts, from T-shirts and mugs to pottery and glassware, as well as items made from bison, such as bison wool socks and buffalo meat and jerky.
Venture over to the World’s Largest Buffalo statue, a 60-ton concrete monument that measures 26 feet tall and 46 feet long. This larger-than-life attraction is the perfect spot to take a picture.
Live Buffalo Herd
While the museum exhibits provide a unique glimpse into the history of the buffalo, perhaps one of the most spectacular experiences at the facility is watching the live herd, comprised of approximately 30 bison. Stand on the viewing platform for panoramic views of the bison grazing the surrounding hillsides.
Learn more about the National Buffalo Museum, and plan your trip today.