In celebration of its 50th anniversary, Rifle Creek Museum will offer free tours Saturday to show what was life was like in Rifle over the years.
“We exhibit everything from early days in Rifle to the present,” said Betty Waldron of the Rifle Heritage Center.
The layout of the museum is designed to give visitors a sense of what life was like for early settlers and on. Visitors can walk through an old-fashioned general store or hospital and medical room to see some of the artifacts that the museum collected over the years.
The general store is stocked with drugs from Stauffer’s Pharmacy in Rifle in 1902, all donated to the museum. In fact, all the items featured in the museum were donated by residents and community members that want to see these items preserved, along with the times that they were from.
One of the cabinets in the general store room was originally from England and traveled to Leadville many, many years ago. It now sits in the Rifle Heritage Center.
“We organized the museum so it depicts the life of the community at the time,” Waldron said.
There’s a parlor with old-school barbershop equipment, a general store stocked with drugs that have long been off the market, and a building full of equipment long retired or made obsolete. Every room in the museum depicts a different scene from eras long past.
The school room gives visitors a taste of what it was like to be a student before computers or cell phones.
“In order to know where you’re going, you have to know where you came from,” Waldron added.
To honor its anniversary, the museum added a ’50s room as an exhibit, complete with a 1939 jukebox and other items from the era.
Above a collection of vintage cameras sit photographs from the late 1800s and mid-1900s by Fred and Ola Garrison, two renowned photographers of the time. The photographs are available for purchase. The museum has more than 4,000 of the pair’s glass-plate negatives archived.
Repeat visitors can look forward to checking out the brand-new Native American exhibit that visitors will have to check out to learn more details about.
“They were so very much a part of our culture and history, they were the first people in this area over thousands of years ago,” Waldron said.
Prices after Saturday will be $5 for adults, $4 for teenagers, seniors and military, and $3 for children ages 6-12.
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