The Fairmount Historical Museum in Fairmount, Indiana contains a mind-boggling range of James Dean artifacts. I never expected to see items that ranged from James Dean’s watch to his motorcycle to his sink basin.
Fairmount Historical Museum in Fairmount
You see, Fairmount Academy shut its doors in 1923. Fairmount High School closed in 1969. The community felt the loss–and wondered where the trophies, class photos, and memorabilia had gone.
A committee was formed, figuring out a way to highlight and showcase the town and school artifacts. It was a process that began in 1975. They did a huge fundraising effort in order to buy the space they needed.
It wasn’t easy but their successful efforts enabled them to purchase a building and move out of space above an auto store. The current location of the museum opened back in 1983. It is been on the National Register of Historic Places and Sites since 1979.
You will find separate parts of this museum. On one side, it’s all about Jim Davis and Garfield. I, like every other kid, absolutely loved Garfield. I think he had a big part to do with my desire to have an orange kitty one day (yes, we do have an orange kitty and, yes, he is about as big as Garfield too).
James Dean Memorabilia
Another portion of the museum is all about town history. But the star of the show appears to be the James Dean area. It’s neat to think the way the town of Fairmount, Indiana had to really work together to track down and preserve items of this small town kid turned celebrity.
They have a tremendous selection of items that belonged to James Dean. I, personally, found the image of the chair to be interesting. It’s neat to see him on the phone, talking, sitting in the very same chair. There are pieces of his clothing, his awards, and even his motorcycles.
You will wander around closed glass cases. There are note cards here to describe what you are seeing. They have many nice, more personal touches in the museum.
History in Fairmount, Indiana
James Dean fans will love it, history buffs will find it fascinating, and we haven’t even delved into the rest of the Fairmount Historical Museum yet. Are you impressed yet? Just wait until you see this one in person.
You can find the Fairmount Historical Museum on Facebook. They do a fabulous job sharing James Dean, Jim Davis, and other town information, videos, and images. Give them a follow to stay on top of everything Fairmount.
Small Towns: Destinations, not Drive-Thrus! I’m Jessica Nunemaker and THIS is Little Indiana.
Just don’t forget to tell them that Little Indiana sent you.
Fairmount Historical Museum
203 E Washington Street
Fairmount, IN 46928
Hours – APRIL THROUGH OCTOBER:
Monday – Friday: 10 AM – 5 PM
Saturday and Sunday: 12 PM – 5 PM
Winter hours by appointment only.
Always call ahead to verify hours before making a special trip.
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