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Exhibits at the HMNC are one of the most important things we do. Historic photos and documents, three dimensional objects, and meticulous research all combine to make history come alive for the viewers. Interactive elements appeal to people of all ages, and an innovative method of display creates intimacy while maintaining the scale of the room. The exhibits can be folded away for hosting large events too! See the “Host your Event” section for more information.


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An exclusive exhibit on fashion throughout the decades

This limited time fashion exhibit displays a variety of different textiles from various eras. You can find everything from Victorian style gowns and 1920s flapper dresses to hand made crazy quilts and vintage sewing machines. Also featured in this display is various wedding dresses & accessories showcasing several wedding traditions over the years.


Over the years how we handle household chores has changed dramatically with advancements in technology. Everything from keeping food cold, how laundry was cleaned, and how food was cooked transformed over the years. In this display you can see appliances from different including a traditional ice box for refrigeration to one of the first electric washing machines used in homes.

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Main Exhibit Topics

Mini Exhibits
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Fur Trade

Like many local areas the Fur Trade industry was a defining feature of the counties history.

Here you will find a brief history on how fur trade became such a large industry along with various photos, artifacts, and pelts. We also have our prominent Legends Ranch display that uses showcases Michigan Mammals including a bear, wolf, turkeys, and many other animals native to the area.


This photo collage encompasses many different schools and activities throughout Newaygo County including sports, photos of one room schools, and class photos. Also included is the large bell from a Newaygo County School and an antique desk & chair.


Newaygo County has a deep-rooted history of logging, farming, and tourism. However, the development of small and large businesses throughout the area have also played a major role in establishing Newaygo County’s economy. In our display we have various merchandise and promotional artifacts from many businesses around Newaygo County.

HMNC Gas Stations

The building that now houses the Heritage Museum of Newaygo County has a long history dating back to the 1918 as a Sinclair Gas Station. Along with this a Standard Service was once house in the building next door. Our display showcases not only Standard Service artifacts, but also a vintage gas pump and the history or our very own building.



Unlocking Possibilities for a Brighter Future.

Field Trip Programs:

Pioneer Children - 2nd Grade

On this journey into the past, students will make and taste their own butter, experience daily chores, touch a variety of early tools and household items, learn their uses.

They will sample games which entertained pioneer children, make a button buzzer of their own and go on a guided tour of the museum.

Native Americans and the Fur Trade – 3rd Grade

Learn Native American culture and how the Native Americans lived and thrived on the land.

Discover the economic and cultural factors which drove the French to travel thousands of miles to our shores. Students will handle actual fur pelts, learn what items they were traded for, and why.

Lumbering in Newaygo County – 4th Grade

Imagine a Michigan covered in White Pine trees and many other Hardwood trees. Then imagine much of Michigan barren of forests with eroding riverbanks and wind-blown sand.


Students learn about the days of extensive logging; what, when, why, how it happened and who did it, as well as the significance of this period in our history.

We will also compare logging in the late 1800s with logging today.

Presentations/Guest Speaker Opportunities

The following topics are available in a 1 hour presentation that comes to you (provided you have a projector). Survey of American Presidents, History of Michigan, Lumbering in Newaygo County, and Michigan’s Fur Trade – from Marco Polo to French Voyagers in the woods, 1300-1700.

Call or message for more information:

Scott Looman, Education Manager

(231) 652-5003


Day Camp

Authentic archaeology dig in collaboration with Local landowners and National Forest Service Archaeologists.

  • One week long. Third week of June, Monday – Friday, 9:00 – 3:00 

  • Ages 10 to 14. Participants must have a direct connection to Newaygo County.

  • Space is limited

  • Cost: $50 (Scholarships available based on need) 


Call or message for more information:

Scott Looman, Education Manager

(231) 652-5003

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