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6 Must-Visit Historic Sites In Springfield, Missouri


by Manda Pierrelouis


Springfield, Missouri, a city steeped in history, is a treasure trove of fascinating historic sites that offer a glimpse into the past. From the iconic Route 66 to the Civil War battlegrounds, Springfield is a haven for history enthusiasts. The city’s rich heritage is beautifully preserved in its historic landmarks, museums, and architectural wonders. Whether you’re a history buff or simply curious about the past, Springfield’s historic sites promise an enriching and captivating experience. Join us as we embark on a journey to explore six must-visit historic sites in Springfield, Missouri, and uncover the stories that have shaped this vibrant city into what it is today.

Pythian Castle

Pythian Castle, a historic landmark in Springfield, Missouri, has a rich and intriguing history. Constructed in 1913 by the Knights of Pythias, this castle-like structure was initially used as an orphanage and later repurposed as a military facility during World War II. The castle is renowned for its stunning architecture and is believed to be haunted, adding to its allure. Visitors can take guided tours to explore the castle’s fascinating past, including its role as a military hospital and the paranormal experiences reported on the premises.

Wilson’s Creek National Battlefield

Wilson’s Creek National Battlefield is a significant historical site that witnessed one of the earliest battles of the American Civil War. This hallowed ground offers visitors a glimpse into the past, with preserved battlefields, historic buildings, and informative exhibits. The visitor center provides detailed insights into the Battle of Wilson’s Creek, enhancing the understanding of this pivotal event. Walking trails allow visitors to explore the battlefield, providing a poignant and educational experience for history enthusiasts and families alike.

Route 66 Car Museum

The Route 66 Car Museum is a captivating attraction that showcases an impressive collection of vintage automobiles, offering a nostalgic journey through automotive history. Located in Springfield, Missouri, this museum features meticulously restored classic cars, each with its own unique story to tell. From iconic American muscle cars to rare European models, the museum appeals to car enthusiasts and those interested in the cultural significance of automobiles. With its diverse and well-maintained exhibits, the museum provides an engaging and immersive experience for visitors of all ages.

Springfield Art Museum

The Springfield Art Museum stands as a testament to cultural appreciation and artistic expression. Boasting a diverse array of permanent and rotating exhibitions, this museum offers a captivating exploration of visual arts, from traditional to contemporary pieces. With a focus on engaging the community through art, the museum hosts educational programs, workshops, and events for art enthusiasts and aspiring artists. Its serene surroundings and thoughtfully curated displays make it a must-visit destination for those seeking inspiration and cultural enrichment in Springfield, Missouri.

Discovery Center of Springfield

The Discovery Center of Springfield is an interactive science center that combines fun and learning for visitors of all ages. With hands-on exhibits, educational displays, and engaging activities, the center fosters a sense of curiosity and discovery. From exploring the wonders of space to delving into the principles of physics and nature, the Discovery Center offers an immersive and enlightening experience. Through its innovative approach to science education, the center ignites a passion for learning and exploration, making it an essential stop for families and science enthusiasts in Springfield, Missouri.

Landers Theatre

The Landers Theatre, steeped in history and architectural elegance, is a prominent cultural landmark in Springfield, Missouri. As the oldest and most cherished civic theater in the state, it has been a hub for performing arts and entertainment for over a century. The theater’s grandeur and rich heritage are evident in its ornate décor and timeless charm, providing a captivating setting for a wide range of theatrical productions and performances. Whether attending a classic play, a musical, or a contemporary show, visitors are immersed in the magic of live theater, making the Landers Theatre an essential destination for cultural experiences in Springfield.


Springfield, Missouri, is a treasure trove of historic sites waiting to be explored. From the iconic Pythian Castle to the awe-inspiring Wilson’s Creek National Battlefield, the city offers a rich tapestry of history and culture. Visitors can immerse themselves in the past at the Route 66 Car Museum or marvel at the architectural splendor of the Nathanael Greene/Close Memorial Park. The Mizumoto Japanese Stroll Garden provides a serene retreat, while the History Museum on the Square offers a captivating journey through time. Whether you’re a history enthusiast or simply appreciate the significance of the past, Springfield’s historic sites promise an enriching and memorable experience for all.


What is the best time to visit these historic sites in Springfield, Missouri?
The best time to visit these historic sites is during the spring and fall when the weather is pleasant, and the sites are less crowded.

Are these historic sites family-friendly?
Yes, most of these historic sites are family-friendly and offer engaging activities for visitors of all ages.

Are there guided tours available at these historic sites?
Many of these historic sites offer guided tours, providing in-depth insights into their historical significance and captivating stories.

Are these historic sites accessible for individuals with disabilities?
Efforts have been made to ensure accessibility for individuals with disabilities at most of these historic sites, with facilities and accommodations in place to enhance the overall visitor experience.

Can I take photographs at these historic sites?
Photography policies vary by site, but generally, non-flash photography is allowed. However, it’s recommended to check the specific guidelines for each site before taking photographs.

Are there any special events or festivals held at these historic sites?
Yes, many of these historic sites host special events, festivals, and educational programs throughout the year, offering unique opportunities to engage with the local history and culture.