The State Museum at the Heritage Center is temporarily closed for renovation. Watch for the first phase of new exhibits to open in fall 2013.
If there is a specific object you would like to see, you may want to call ahead (701.328.2666) to make sure it is available.
We apologize for any inconvenience.
Adaption Gallery: Geologic Time
Archelon ("ruler turtle”) was a sea turtle that lived during the Cretaceous period, 80 million years ago, and grew as long as 15 feet. This skeleton cast will be part of the Underwater World display, and will be joined by other giant sea creatures including Xiaphactinus, a giant squid, and a mosasaur.
The State Museum is temporarily closed. Currently open during the expansion are the Museum Store, State Archives, and State Historical Society of North Dakota staff and Foundation offices. New areas will be opening in stages.On Sept. 1, 2013, the new entrance will open to the Northern Lights Lobby, hallway exhibits, new Museum Store, James River Café, Great Plains Theater, Missouri River Events Center, Hub of History, Pembina River Plaza, and renovated Russell Reid Auditorium. Also debuting Sept. 1 is the first phase of new exhibits, Adaptation Gallery: Geologic Time. The official grand opening of the Adaptation Gallery is set for Oct. 12, 2013.
When the Heritage Center expansion project is complete, there will be 39,000 feet of museum space—nearly double the original gallery size! This means we will be able to display more from our collections, tell the story of North Dakota in greater depth, and incorporate up-to-date techniques.
Four new galleries will expand upon the history of North Dakota and its people across time and place, from the time when dinosaurs ruled through the development of today’s emerging industries.
Completion is scheduled for Nov. 2, 2014, North Dakota’s 125th anniversary of statehood.
Permanent exhibits in three new galleries will trace North Dakota history from the geologic past of 500 million years ago through the present day:
Here are just some of the features to be explored in these new galleries.
Adaptation Gallery: Geologic Time
Innovation Gallery: Early Peoples
When people first came to what would become North Dakota over 13,000 years ago, they hunted supersize mammals like the Bison antiquus skeleton you encounter as you enter this area. Devoted to the native peoples of our state, this gallery will highlight the beauty and breadth of the State Museum’s collections.
Inspiration Gallery: Yesterday and Today
Explore the state’s recent history through thematic areas: agricultural innovation; industry and energy; newcomers and settlement; our lives, our communities; conflict and war, and cultural expressions. The Agricultural Innovation area shown here will feature over a century of farm and ranching stories.
The new Governors Gallery will feature traveling exhibits.
612 East Boulevard Ave.
Bismarck, North Dakota 58505
Museum Store: 8am - 5pm M-F; Sat. & Sun. 10am - 5pm.
State Archives: 8am - 4:30pm., M-F, except legal holidays, and 2nd Sat. of each month, 10am - 4:30 pm.
State Historical Society offices: 8am - 5pm M-F, except legal holidays.
phone: (701) 328-2666
fax: (701) 328-3710