The Florida History Museum in Tallahassee takes you on a walk through time with some of the state’s first inhabitants to the state’s role in some of today’s most popular movies. This is the museum I thought the kids would enjoy least, but I have to admit they had a great time, thanks in part to a scavenger hunt worksheet they were given at the door. So, while I went around picking up facts about the history of the state of my birth, they were busy trying to find specific items in each room. What a genius idea to keep them engaged!
I found the trip worthwhile before I even got through the lobby. That’s because the museum has a collection of artwork by The Florida Highwaymen, a group of 26 African American artists who sold their paintings out of the back of their cars, often on the roadside. I can still remember my mother buying some of their paintings of various Florida landscapes, all of which hung in our home throughout my childhood, one of which is in my Atlanta home today. The Highwaymen are being rediscovered today and it gave me great happiness to see their work on display at the Florida History Museum.
Inside the museum we learned all kinds of other amazing facts about the state.
We saw an armadillo the size of a small car and were told that in Florida’s early days that’s just how big the creatures were. We got to stand next to a mastodon found in one of Florida’s springs. We saw treasure from one of the Spanish fleets that met a watery grave off the coast and walked through a replica of a citrus packing plant. We got to see a tin can tourist camp (what a cool name for the first RVs, right?) and traveled aboard a riverboat (with one of the tiniest sleeping quarters I’ve ever seen).
The tour was so much more fun than we thought it would be and definitely a don’t miss on your next trip to Tallahassee.
(Note to the reader: My family was invited by the Convention and Visitor’s Bureau to visit Tallahassee. Some of our expenses were covered. My opinion of what we did and saw is my own and I was not compensated for the review.)