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History

Brown v. Board of Education National Historic Site Step inside the original 1926 African American school—now a symbol of one of America's most important Supreme Court cases. Follow the struggle to end racial segregation, and understand the impact of this famous 1954 case through music, films, and interactive exhibits. 1515 S.E. Monroe St., Topeka, KS; +1 785 354 4273.

Cherokee Strip Land Rush Museum Discover how pioneers scrambled to plant their flags on land given away free by the U.S. government. Uncover the controversial history of the land, including the way it changed hands from Native Americans to the United States and its frontier settlers. 31639 Hwy. 77, Arkansas City, KS; +1 620 442 6750. Fee.

Combat Air Museum Tour an array of real Rusisan and Canadian fighter planes. Learn about the role military planes have played throughout history, and how the aircrafts themselves have changed. Climb inside an actual cockpit of a jet used in the Vietnam War. 602-604 J St., Forbes Field, Topeka, KS; +1 785 862 3303. Fee.

Eisenhower Presidential Library & Museum Visit the home where Dwight Eisenhower grew up; see exhibits that follow Eisenhower through his youth, campaigns, and presidency. Explore WWII displays and learn of Eisenhower's days as a general. 200 S.E. 4th St., Abilene; +1 785 263 6700. Fee.

Fick Fossil and History Museum Look back over thousands of years of our planet's past. See fossils of dinosaurs that once roamed the land that is now Kansas; don't miss the giant prehistoric fish. Recall more recent times as you visit replicas of a depot, creamery, and general store from the late 1800s. 700 W. Third St., Oakley, KS; +1 785 672 4839.

Fort Larned National Historic Site Scan the horizon where frontier soldiers spotted threats to the commerce of the Santa Fe Trail. Visit nine restored buildings that made up the historic fort and relive the past at the museum. See the soldiers' barracks and learn about the lifestyle here on a western frontier fort. 1767 K-156 Hwy., Larned, KS; +1 620 285 6911.

Fort Scott National Historic Site Tour the sprawling military compound and hear gripping tales about local soldiers protecting the permanent Indian frontier, the state's slavery debate, and the role Fort Scott played in the Civil War. Old Fort Blvd., Fort Scott, KS; +1 620 223 0310. Fee.

Frontier Army Museum Discover how U.S. soldiers defended American settlements at the time of the Lewis and Clark Expedition. See the weapons and supplies they used, including a real military biplane and horse-drawn buggies that carried troops before motor vehicles were invented.100 Reynolds Ave., Fort Leavenworth, KS; +1 913 682 4113.

Grenola Museum Museum Sample small-town life in the early 1900s. Check out a working mill where grain was sent after harvest. See an elevator that hoisted the milled grain up into storage. See the everyday goods and tools used by Grenola citizens over 100 years ago. 1 Railroad Ave., Grenola, KS; +1 620 358 2570.

Kansas Historical Society Peek out from a teepee, take a look at a real steam locomotive from the Santa Fe Trail Railroad, and find out how the Civil War shaped state history at the Kansas Museum of History. Learn about the beginnings of the fast food phenomenon. Head to the adjacent Discovery Place and see how old-fashioned telephones worked with switchboards, and run a virtual farm. 6425 S.W. Sixth Ave., Topeka, KS; +1 785 272 8681. Fee.

Kansas Oil Museum See the actual machines and equipment used to pump oil from the ground and refine it for use. Learn what impact the discovery of oil had on Kansas, and how the oil industry operated in this rural state. Visit a 1920s-era town that sprung up to house the workers in an oilfield. 383 E. Central Ave., El Dorado, KS; +1 316 321 9333.

Kansas State Capitol Building Reach staggering new heights as you tour the inside of the capitol's massive dome. Learn how the stately building was constructed in the mid-1800s. See the architectural flair of the Senate Chamber and stroll the halls. Gaze at murals by John Steuart Curry depicting the bloody Civil War. 300 W. 10th St., Topeka, KS; +1 785 296 3966.

McPherson County Old Mill Museum Tour the historic Smoky Valley Roller Mill and learn how wheat was ground into flour. See Native American artifacts, toys of yore, and peruse a library of books on local history. 120 Mill St., Lindsborg, KS; +1 785 227 3595. Fee.

Museum of World Treasures See two real mummies, then get wound up in swaddling bandages and become a living mummy. Take a terrifying look at Ivan, the fossil of a massive Tyrannosaurus Rex. See the ornate swords and jewelry of King Henry I and II, the weapons carried by soldiers in both World Wars, and exhibits celebrating famous musicians and composers. 835 E. First St., Wichita, KS; +1 316 263 1311.

National Agricultural Center and Hall of Fame Get a close look at the tools and machines that have shaped the agriculture industry. Hop aboard a kid-size train for a trip around quaint Farm Town U.S.A. 630 N. 126th St., Bonner Springs, KS; +1 913 721 1075. Fee.

Old Cowtown Museum Enter a mid-1800s-era world of cowboys and frontier traders, farmers and Southern belles. Navigate bustling streets where folks shop for fresh game at the meat market and get tools repaired at the blacksmith's shop. On the farm, see how crops were raised before the machine age. 1865 W. Museum Blvd., Wichita, KS; +1 316 219 1871. Fee.

Old Depot Museum Find out about 19th-century railroads and watch a train chug along the tracks of a model town. Step inside a classroom and general store from 1860s-era Kansas. See how John Brown fought against slavery, and hear about pre-Civil War chaos in Kansas. 135 W. Tecumseh St., Ottawa, KS; +1 785 242 1232. Fee.

Pawnee Indian Museum and State Historic Site Absorb the details of life with the Pawnee Indians as you wander the ruins of a village, explore an earth lodge, and see weapons and utensils used by the tribe. Read up on ancient Pawnee beliefs and traditions; discover the ways tribe members depended on buffalo for survival. Hike a nature trail. 480 Pawnee Trail, Republic, KS; +1 785 361 2255 Fee.

Santa Fe Trail Center Check out houses made of grass and dirt, just like those built by frontier families during the late 1800s. Look at life-size displays of bison, freight wagons, and Native American dwellings. Learn the long history of a trail that began as a trade route between Mexico and America. 1349 K-156 Hwy, Larned, KS; +1 316 285 2054. Fee.

Wichita-Sedgwick County Historical Museum Chart Wichita's progress over two centuries. Discover the Native American tribe that Wichita is named after. Step into the 20th century and see big-time aviation inventions. Compare the way you play today to how kids played in eras past. 204 S. Main, Wichita, KS; +1 316 265 9314. Fee.

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