JoCoHistory Research Tools


There are tools and then there are research tools. 

Welcome to another fabulous Throwback Thursday! You know that JoCoHistory is the place to time travel through local history with its Blog and collection of photos and historical documents. But did you know, about the JoCoHistory Research Tools? Here you'll find a portal to local history projects, local history on the web, a comprehensive list of Johnson County museums and historical sites and other regional museums. 

JoCoHistory Projects

On the Web

  • Kansas Memory - Johnson County
    A project of the Kansas Historical Society, this site contains digital images of letters, diaries, photographs, government records, maps, museum artifacts and much more.
  • Missouri Valley Special Collections Digital Gallery
    Over 11,000 images of archival material such as letters, photographs, postcards, advertising cards and maps from Missouri Valley Special Collections at Kansas City Public Library.
  • Territorial Kansas Online
    A virtual repository of archival documents dating from Kansas' territorial period, 1854-1861.
  • Missouri Digital Heritage
    Digitized collections from libraries, archives, historical societies and museums all across Missouri (formerly Virtually Missouri).
  • Map of historic sites
    Map of local historic places, museums and historical societies.

Local History Museums and Sites

In Johnson County:

  • Gardner Historical Museum
    The museum occupies the 1893 Folk Victorian house built by Herman B. Foster. Exhibits feature topics important to Gardner history: the Grange, the Overland Trails, schools, a turn-of-the century kitchen, as well as historical memorabilia and photos of Gardner's past.
  • Johnson County Museum
    Includes the Johnson County Museum of History, the Lanesfield School, and the 1950s All Electric House. The museum also features a research room with access to documents, maps, photographs and manuscripts related to the history of Johnson County, Kansas from 1820s to present.
  • Legler Barn Museum
    The Legler barn was built by Adam Legler in 1864, razed in 1972 and restored in 1983 as a community Museum. It features permanent and temporary exhibits about Lenexa and the surrounding area.
  • Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop and Farm
    Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop & Farm Historic Site is the last remaining stagecoach stop on the historic Santa Fe Trail still open to the public. Three original buildings are preserved: The Mahaffie Family Home/Stagecoach Stop, two-story Ice House, and Wood Peg Barn.
  • Oxford Schoolhouse
    Built in 1877, this one-room schoolhouse operated until 1955. In 2003 it was moved from 135th and Mission to its current location at Ironwoods Park. The school is now restored and interpreted as a circa 1910 schoolhouse.
  • Shawnee Indian Mission
    The manual training school attended by Shawnee, Delaware, and other Indian children from 1839-1862. The Shawnee Mission also served as an early territorial capitol, a supply point on the Santa Fe and Oregon Trails, and as a camp for Union soldiers during the Civil War. The Mission was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1968. The Mission also has a research library that is open to the public by appointment.
  • Shawnee Town Museum
    Shawnee Town is a living history museum that opens a window to life in a small farm community in the years leading up to the Great Depression. Visitors can stroll through the 3-acre park and visit historic buildings that include a school house, farmstead, chapel, fire station, local businesses and gardens.

Other Regional Museums

  • Kansas Museum of History
    Museum operated by the Kansas Historical Society in Topeka.
  • Kansas City Museum
    Located within the Corinthian Hall mansion, the Kansas City Museum offers exhibits on regional history and natural history, as well as a planetarium and authentic 1910 soda fountain.