The Western Illinois Museum exhibits a selection of its collection in three exhibits a year.  We’re often asked how we decide what to exhibit.  The museum has a number of committees that help manage all aspects of the museum, including an Exhibit Committee.  Ideas for exhibits are often the result of conversations with committee members about artifacts in the collection, a significant event or trend in the area’s history.  Sometimes ideas are shared by visitors, museum members or organizations.

Installation view of Legacy of Learning, 2012
Installation view of the exhibit, “Legacy of Learning,” 2012

An idea often takes many twists and turns before it is presented as an exhibit at the museum.  Research, artifacts and even the physical space often present new ideas, or other options that need to be considered to create the best possible exhibit.  The curatorial process can be at times fluid, exhilarating, challenging and very satisfying, especially when we see visitors enjoying the exhibit. Stop by for a visit; bring your out of town guests or a friend!  There is always something unique to see, and learn at your regional museum.
Museum hours: Tuesday through Saturday, from
10:00 am to 4:00 pm or by appointment.

Current Exhibit

The current exhibit, Mortar & Pestle,  Potions & Pills: A History of Apothecary, features three of the museum’s collections that illustrate the changes to what we know today as “the pharmacy.”  For centuries druggists and pharmacists have been the most accessible health care professionals in every community, striving to heal and help improve our health.  The exhibit is on view through September 12, 2015.

Upcoming Exhibits

Tools of the Trade: Building McDonough County
October 13, 2015 through January 2, 2016

Rites of Passage: A Journey of Life
February 9, 2016 through May 7, 2016