Cimarron Heritage Center


The Cimarron Heritage Center (CHC) was formed in 1994 with the mission to preserve and interpret the natural, historic and artistic heritage of Cimarron County and the area and to assume responsibility for the collections which are held in trust for all citizens and visitors to this region. The CHC is dedicated to support and strengthen public education through interpretive exhibitions, programs, and the development and conservation of artifacts, photographs, manuscripts and other materials relating to the history of the county and area.

For many decades the people of Cimarron County did whatever they could to preserve the unique historical heritage of their county. Locals welcomed scholars to the region to study artifacts, written accounts and oral histories. Dedicated residents like Norma Gene Young, Roy Butterbaugh and Truman Tucker did much to collect information and compile articles and books about Cimarron County's exciting past. Local families have preserved many of the frequent and valuable finds of fossils and historic artifacts. Other items made their way for storage of exhibition at other museums far away from Cimarron County.

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In 1992, two major bequests gave the Cimarron County Historical Society new hope. A one million dollar grant from the Charles French Estate is now invested and returns from those investments provide operating funds in perpetuity. The Cox family home, designed by famed architect Bruce Goff, was given to the Cimarron County Historical Society and houses the administrative offices, Gift Shop, and the Santa Fe Trail Exhibit.

The CHC has made strides in its efforts to preserve the history and heritage of Cimarron County. To date, the CHC has been successful in the renovation of the Julius Cox house. The construction of a maintenance/storage building has allowed the CHC a place repair and store artifacts as well as a banquet hall for various presentations, fund raisers, banquets and exhibits. Recently a 6400 sq. ft. French Museum building was completed to house permanent Cimarron County exhibits.

The CHC is actively involved with community events such as the Santa Fe Trail Daze, a yearly celebration of the Santa Fe Trail and historic tours to the many historic places in Cimarron County. In 1996, the CHC was named the "Outstanding Local Historical Society Museum" by the Oklahoma Historical Society and was recently the host of the 1997 Santa Fe Trail Symposium. The CHC is managed and operated by volunteers of the Community.  

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LAST MODIFIED 09/04/09