Conner Prairie Collections

Conner Prairie's collections are focused on Midwest and Indiana material culture circa 1800 to the present, including domestic and agricultural objects, historic textiles, science materials reflecting invention and innovation, and live animals that help visitors make connections with the natural world. It may also include such non-regional and foreign objects as help define and delineate the material culture of Indiana.

In a effort to preserve the fast-disappearing rural heritage of Hamilton County and central Indiana, Conner Prairie's Rural History Project (RHP) has collected materials and gathered oral histories from area residents. The effort was funded through a grant from the Lilly Endowment's Legacy Fund of Hamilton County and headed by former Conner Prairie Historian Tim Crumrin. Nearly 200 people were interviewed and may of those provided photos, artifacts, and research materials.

For a deeper dive into Conner Prairie's Collections, visit Indiana University Library's Digital Collections page.

Dairy barns at Conner Prairie

Learn more about our Collections

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Learn about our historical buildings

William Conner House

Animal Encounters

1836 Prairietown

1863 Civil War Journey

Lenape Indian Camp

Original Conner Prairie Post Cards

Hover or click image to view post card information on the back.

"The village scene is part of our historic re-creation of Indiana in the 1830's. Conner Prairie, through first person presentation, brings to life a cross-section of the people who settled central Indiana. Utilizing some 20 buildings as backgrounds, many of the crafts and skills of early settlers are practiced daily. Conner Prairie is open from the first Tuesday in April through the first Sunday in November and is closed on Mondays. Three special events are celebrated each year: Pioneer craft Days, the second weekend in June; Old Fashioned 4th of July; and Traditional Christmas in December."

"Rear entrance of William Conner Homestead, built in 1823 for Conner's second wife, Elizabeth Chapman.
Photography by Lewis G. Hall, Jr."

"East view of the Conner home, the first brick residence in the New Purchase area of Indiana. It was built in 1823 by a successful trader-merchant-farmer.
Photography by Zierten"

"The general store, on the left, the widow's house, and the blacksmith's house are the commercial and political centers of Conner Prairie's 19th century Indiana frontier settlement.
Photo by Lewis G. Hall, Jr."

"The village widow and the blacksmith live across the road from each other and share much of the conversation and activity of Conner Prairie's 1840's Indiana Settlement. 
Photo by Lewis G. Hall, Jr."

"It was built in 1884 over cedar creek and is now located in a field near Cedar Creek close to Garrett, Indiana. It is 110` long and 12` wide.
Photo by John V. Pontiere, Jr."

Curious about how Conner Prairie restores our historic buildings? Learn more by viewing the video below:

Conner Prairie will collect or build, use, maintain, and preserve appropriate original artifacts, reproductions, and animals that support the institutional mission and long-range plan, and support on-going historical and scientific environments, programs, activities, and exhibits.

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Thinking of donating to our Collections?

If you have an object that falls within Conner Prairie’s collecting scope that you are interested in donating to the museum, please contact the Collections Manager at 317-214-4751 or send an email to