The Historical Society of Lee’s Summit Museum is located in the heart of downtown Lee’s Summit at 220 SW Main Street. The museum contains maps, photographs, and artifacts of early Lee’s Summit. Displays include a re-creation of the Vogue Theater, a WPA kitchen, information on local musical families the Brownings and Methenys, and and an exhibit on the Border War including Lee’s Summit’s notorious resident Cole Younger. Much more can be found at the museum including a gift shop and research room. The museum is open Thursday and Friday from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm and Saturday from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm, admission is free.
The museum is housed in the historic Post Office that was constructed in 1939 as a part of the Works Projects Administration (WPA). The WPA, under New Deal, employed millions of jobless Americans during the Great Depression who worked on public works projects constructing buildings, roads, bridges, parks and more. Inside the historic building is the result of another New Deal project through the Treasury Section of Fine Arts. It is a beautiful mural called “Pastoral”. Painted by artist Ted Gilien in 1940 it depicts a rural scene, which would be typical of Lee’s Summit back in the day.
The building housed the Post Office until October 1962 when a new one was erected on Market Street. In May of 1963 it became City Hall for over 40 years. It was vacated in 2005 when a modern City Hall was constructed at Green and Second Street. A non-profit occupied the building for the next few years until voters approved a bond to restore the building for use as a museum.
The Historical Society of Lee’s Summit is collecting artifacts and photos of Lee’s Summit’s rich past. Feel free to contact us if you would like to contribute to the preservation of our cultural heritage by sharing your items, photos, and stories of historic Lee’s Summit, MO.
The museum is located at 220 SW Main Street.
Thursdays and Fridays, 10 am- 2 pm. Saturdays, 10 am – 4 pm
Free. Donations accepted for the Lee’s Summit Historical Society.
Free on-street parking is available.