Osage County Museum
The Osage County Historical Society Museum houses a collection of artifacts donated primarily by former and present residents of Osage County. Exhibits are arranged so that the viewer gets some insight into business, occupational and family life of bygone eras.
Burlingame is the oldest continually occupied town in Osage County, having been founded in 1854. At about the same time, the Sauk and Fox nations were removed to the southeastern part of the county. The Indian Agency was located near the present-day town of Quenemo. Other towns quickly sprang up throughout the county as the presence of coal became known.
For many years, the major economic forces in Osage County were coal mining, railroading and farming. As the coal fields were depleted, the railroads followed suit. Farming remains and is supplemented with recreation as both Pomona Lake and Melvern Lake are situated in our county.
Because of the mining and farming opportunities, a variety of ethnic groups came to Osage County. Immigrants from England, Wales, Ireland, Sweden, Germany, France and Italy quickly settled in, were assimilated, and these ethnic surnames remain today. They settled in among whites, who could trace ancestries to American colonial times, African-Americans seeking opportunity in a Free State after the Civil War and the Sauk and Fox who did not allow their people to be removed easily to Indian Territory in present-day Oklahoma.
Our museum tries to represent the wide variety of historic, economic, cultural and ethnic aspects of Osage County, Kansas, from early settlement in the 1850s onward. We hope that you will include our museum and family research center in your Kansas travel plans.