The Homestead: Exhibits
History            Exhibits
The Main Floor
Step back into the 1861-1910 era as you imagine Joseph’s wife, Lucinda, calling students for piano lessons by putting out a flag on the roof’s widow’s walk. Many of the home’s furnishings, including the beautiful carved secretary displaying the china, date to the early Glidden generations.

The Upstairs
As you tour the upstairs bedrooms, imagine using the chamber pot, kept under the bed, so you wouldn’t have to traipse outside to the outhouse in the cold, dark night. Or if you recall the mid-1900s, maybe you can still hear “Amos and Andy” on the old tube radio in Jessie’s Room.

The Exhibit Hall
"Joseph Glidden: An American Story of Immigration, Migration, and Innovation" features Glidden's story from boyhood through his involvement in barbed wire manufacturing. Peruse the barbed wire gallery and see examples of talented Mabel Glidden’s artwork--just some of the stories explored in the Exhibit Hall.

The Glidden Women Gallery
The Gliddens both lived long lives and grew strong, independent women. The Glidden Women Gallery highlights the lives of eight women related by either blood or marriage to Joseph Glidden. Some had obstacles to overcome. All carried a deep concern for their fellow man, and were unselfish in the freely given gifts of their time and talents.View Biographies

“Barbed Wire: A Cultural History through Photographs”
As a farmer, Joseph Glidden was simply problem-solving when he developed his famous barbed wire. But barbed wire has become more than a fence on a farm. From its early history when it was used in protecting fields and herds and in separating whites and Indians, through modern times in defending trenches and in imprisoning, its function has been to protect—or to separate. Through the generosity of the Library of Congress this photographic exhibit of bared wire use throughout the world is part of the Homestead’s permanent collection. Because the exhibit is on display only periodically, visitors specifically interested should contact the museum about availability.

The Kids' Corner
Dress up and step “into” a scene with Brindle the infamous family cow; do your laundry the old-fashioned way—with a tub and washboard; and play with simple, old-time games in an area created just for kids.

The Gardens
The perennial gardens that grace the front yard contain flowers that were mostly used as cut flowers by the family for their floral business, which Mabel started in the 1930s. Such varieties as old-fashioned peony, golden rod, iris, Virgina blue bells, phlox, and daylily produce vivid color spring and summer. New additions include a bed of Knockout roses. Carter and his brother Nansen, who lived directly to the west, were gardeners extraordinaire and produced bushels of produce. Nansen also raised many varieties of fruit including heirloom apples, peaches, apricots, plums, cherries, currants, and blackberries in the orchards surrounding the Homestead and his home. An apricot and apple tree in the side and back yard are remnants of the fruit orchard.
blacksmith barn