210 Jefferson St.
Grain Valley, MO 64029-9089
Phone: (816) 847-2700
Fax: (816) 847-6493
Arts & Museums
As you walk in through the doors of Leila's Hair Museum, you will be surrounded by nothing but hair. Styling of hair has been an aspect of beauty since ancient times; this museum, established by Leila Cohoon, aims at cherishing this art form. Exhibits on display include broaches comprising hair, paintings made with powdered hair, hair wreaths and hair accessories. Popular artifacts on display include locks from celebrities, presidents, Queen Victoria, St. Anne and Mother Mary.
Built in 1859, this historic frontier jail located in Independence Square is where Frank James, Jesse's bank-robbing brother, was imprisoned. With bars on the windows, the jail looks like something out of an old western movie. Visitors can tour the Marshall's home, the jail cells, a schoolhouse and the surrounding grounds. An exhibit of handmade weapons is also on display. Admission: $5 adults, $4.50 seniors, $2 children/students, children younger than 6 are free.
You will travel back in time when stepping into the showroom floor of the 1940's Lincoln Mercury Dealership.
The National Frontier Trails Museum reflects centuries of history. This museum features a number of exhibits that highlight the life and times of a pioneer, including quotes and narratives from the brave souls that made their way out West.
Learn about the key role the Mormons played in the early and tempestuous history of Independence. See rare artifacts, exhibits and artwork documenting the history and beliefs of the Saints.
Located in nearby Independence, this library is one of only ten presidential libraries in the country run by the National Archives and Records Administration. It houses 15 million pages of documents and 35,000 objects that are all associated with the life and presidency of Harry Truman. This populist president was born in Independence and he is buried in the courtyard alongside his wife Bess on the grounds of this impressive library.
Housed in a circa 1877 drugstore on Liberty's historic square, the Clay County Museum and Historical Society features three floors of displays, which includes items from early county settlements, a completely equipped 1900 doctor's office, patented medicines, guns, dolls, toys, Civil War items, a Victorian parlor, bedroom, and a kitchen/dining room. The Clay County Museum is open Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
This museum is devoted to the history of Kansas City and its environs. The museum is housed in the stately Beaux-Arts mansion that once belonged to the lumber tycoon R.A. Long. The estate was given to the city in 1938 and converted into a museum shortly thereafter. Inside, visit the 50-room wing known as the Corinthian Hall or the StoryTarium, which is an interactive area that presents the history of the city as well as the people who created it. In addition to Kansas City history, the museum also focuses on community events that run the gamut, from Latino heritage exhibits to LGBT programs.
Filled with period furnishings, the Jesse James Bank Museum allows visitors to step back in time to 1866 with an account of that fateful February 13 in 1866, as they "peer into the original bank vault, view photographs, and listen to the exploits attributed to the James Gang."
A visit to the Black Archives makes the perfect addition to a day of discovery in the downtown area. This one-of-a-kind attraction, located just one block west of the 18th and Vine District, boasts one of the largest collections of African-American art, memorabilia and historical materials in the region. You will also explore the histories and lifestyles of many of the most respected African-American leaders in the area.
This impressive museum pays tribute to the music and performers within the inimitable American art form we call jazz. The history of this music is told through interactive exhibits where you can listen to performances, watch videos and learn more about the greatest jazz musicians on earth, from those perennial favorites Dizzy and Miles to those lesser known cats like Horace Peterson and Tony Williams. Visitors will also learn about the history of African-American artists in local Kansas City lore and their many contributions to the community. The museum, which adjoins the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum, rents its stage for special events and group tours are available. Call ahead or check the website for more details.
Explore the history of the Negro Baseball Leagues at this museum located in the 18th & Vine District. Through video presentations, film exhibits, interactive stations, a photo gallery and pieces of memorabilia, the museum offers insight into the lives and careers of the players who contributed so much to the game of baseball while helping to advance the Civil Rights movement. This museum adjoins the American Jazz Museum, so be sure to allow enough time to visit both. Check website to find out more details on events and presentations.