From its founding in 1827 as the gateway city to the rugged unknown frontier, to its current ranking as the fourth largest city in Missouri, Independence has played an important and sometimes pivotal role in American history.

That role can be experienced at the grandly restored Independence mansions and rustic log cabins through the colorful stories that fill their walls.

Three site tickets are available for Vaile, Bingham-Waggoner, and the 1859 Jail for $15. A $20.00 four site ticket, which includes the National Frontier Trails Museum, is also available.







1859 Jail & Marshal’s Home Museum

This two-story 1859 Jackson County Jail, with its barred windows, double iron doors and leg chains, once housed Frank James, Jesse James notorious brother. Visitors are amazed to learn how James was treated like a hero and showered with gifts throughout his incarceration. Four feet away is the back wall of the federalist-style marshal’s house which was home for county marshals until the early 1930s. Special exhibits such as a collection of confiscated handmade weapons are available.

217 N. Main, (816) 461-1897

Open: Mon. - Sat.; 10 - 4 p.m.
Sun.; 1-4 p.m.
April – October
Admission: $6 adults; $5 seniors;
$3 Children/Students; $4.50 Group Rates
Handicapped Accessible: Limited, get directions.
Closed Easter & Mother’s Day, November, January through March
Special Christmas tour.

www.jchs.org



Bingham-Waggoner EstateBingham-Waggoner Estate

Built in 1855 along 1846 alignment of Santa Fe Trail, the home was once owned by George C. Bingham, famed Civil War artist. It was also home to the Waggoner family from 1879-1978, founders of Waggoner Gates Mill. Group meals may be reserved in advance in the cozy carriage house. Holiday tours available between Thanksgiving and December 30.

313 W. Pacific, (816) 461-3491

Open: Mon. - Sat.; 10 - 4 p.m. Sun.: 1 - 4p.m. April – October
Admission: $6 adults; $5 seniors;
$3 Children/Students; $4.50 Group Rates
 Handicapped Accessible: Limited, get directions.
Closed Easter & Mother’s Day, November, January through March

www.bwestate.org



Chicago and Alton DepotChicago and Alton Depot

Built in 1879, the depot is believed to be the oldest two-story frame depot remaining in Missouri. It was moved to the National Frontier Trails Museum Campus in 1996.

On the second floor are a kitchen, dining room, bedroom and parlor where the stationmaster resided.

318 W. Pacific, (816) 325-7955

Open: April - October
Hours: 9:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. Mon.,Thurs. - Sat. and
12:30 p.m. - 4:30 p.m. Sun. Other times by appointment.
Donations welcomed.
Partially Wheelchair Accessible.

www.chicagoalton1879depot.org



Pioneer Spring Cabin

The austere two-room log cabin offers a sharp contrast to Independence’s opulent Victorian estates. Originally constructed in an Irish community known as “Brady Town,” the Pioneer Spring Cabin was moved to its present location in 1971. A spring outside the Cabin has been recreated to represent the abundant natural springs that served weary trail riders, pioneers and livestock.SE corner of Noland and Truman Roads, (816) 325-7111

Hours: Closed for this season.
Admission: 



Truman HomeTruman Home

The Truman Home, located at 219 N. Delaware, offers a glimpse at the personal life of the 33rd President of the US. Beautiful in its uncluttered simplicity, the Truman Home showcases the simple life Truman and his beloved Bess enjoyed in Independence before and after his presidency. 

Tours run every 15 minutes 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tickets must be purchased at the Truman Home Ticket Center on the day of the tour. No advance reservations. Groups are limited to 8 people. Visitors also enjoy a visit to the Truman Home Ticket Center with free audio visual show depicting the President’s life and the interior of his stately home.

Ticket Center Main & Truman Roads (223 N. Main, (816) 254-9929)

Open: Tuesday-Saturday, 8:30-5:00
Closed: Federal holidays
Tour of home: 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. (8 people every 15 minutes)
$4 adults; 15 and under free
Handicapped Accessible: Limited, get directions.

www.nps.gov/hstr



Vaile MansionVaile Mansion

Built in 1881 by local entrepreneur and U.S. mail contractor Harvey Merrick Vaile, according to Architect magazine, this ornate 30-room mansion is one of the finest examples of Second-Empire Victorian architecture in the country. Colorful ceiling murals, lavish furnishings, hand-painted murals and whimsical detailing make this home a “must see.“ Holiday tours with special decorations run between Thanksgiving and December 30.

1500 N. Liberty, (816) 325-7430 

Open: Mon. - Sat.; 10 - 4 p.m. Sun.; 1-4 p.m.
April – October 10
Admission: $6 adults; $5 seniors;
$3 Children/Students; $4.50 Group Rates
 Not Handicapped Accessible.
Closed Easter & Mother’s Day, November, January through March
Special Holiday tours.

www.vailemansion.org