The Museum of Northwest Colorado is housed in the old Colorado State Armory building in Downtown Craig, CO. With over 10,000 sq. ft. of display spanning 3 levels, the museum covers millions of years of Northwest Colorado history. We have been recognized worldwide for our tireless quest to uncover the events and artifacts that helped define the American West.
In addition to one of the largest collections of Old West firearms and paraphernalia in the country, our entire collection consists of over 15,000 artifacts, 40,000 photographs, and 50,000 documents, making us a hub for authors, researchers, academia and the general public alike.
The iconic West is still tangible in Northwest Colorado. In fact, as late as 1915, horse drawn stagecoaches were still a major form of transportation used in the area. And there's so much more. From dinosaurs, to Native Americans, to early explorers, The Museum of Northwest Colorado tells the story of one of the richest histories in the American West.
Some of what we offer
The Victory Highway was conceived by a group of businessmen and civic leaders in 1921, as way to honor those who had died in World War I. It also served to accommodate cross-country travel with the fairly new standard of travel - the automobile. Traversing the entire width of the United States from San Francisco to New York, the highway was a tribute not only to those who had given their lives for freedom, but also, an unspoken monument to the new national pastime of touring by car.
The highway, which ran through 12 states, was the first road system in the United States to receive federal funding for construction. By 1923, the highway was open to travel and monuments and plaques to the fallen warriors were found in many locations along the route.
We have one of the largest cowboy gun/leather/spur collections ever on public display- anywhere! It is one of the finest of its kind and represents 50 years of collecting by its original owner, Bill Mackin. It is the basis of his own book, "Cowboy and Gunfighter Collectibles" (available from Museum Gift Shop). Parts of the collection have been featured in numerous other publications and TV shows. The collection is displayed on the second floor of the museum in its entirety. Learn more under the Exhibits tab.
Stagecoach & Railroad Exhibit
The collection of Moffat Road memorabilia has been a significant addition to the museum. The museum has the largest collection of Moffat Road artifacts on public display anywhere. With dioramas, artifacts and photographs, the story of the railroad - and its impact on the region and the local economy - is an amazing tale of initiative and perseverance that brought incredible change to the Yampa Valley.
At the Museum of Northwest Colorado we house an extensive collection of records. We invite anyone interested in reasearching at our facility to schedule an appointment with us to make sure we have the staff and resources available for that day. There is a research and photo use policy that must be filled out be any persons interested in using Museum archives. Learn more under the research tab.
"Tucked away in the corner of Colorado, many visitors don't make it all the way to the town of Craig 40 miles form Steamboat Springs---But they should."
-Colorado Tourism's "Top Museums"
A must see if you are in Craig. We truly enjoyed walking around this museum and viewing the historical artifacts they have in their collection. I was also impress with the handicap accessibility of the place, there is an elevator and a lift to help assist into the Railroad Room, not something I find at some of these older buildings.
"Anybody who likes gunfighters, outlaws and lawmen will want to spend time here to see the remarkable collection of cowboy guns, spurs and leather."
-True West Magazine
Old West Surprise
This museum was a wonderful unexpected surprise. Admissions was free, but the exhibits were so intertesting we made a nice donation at the door upon our exit. The stories and artifacts of Native Americans, gun slingers, outlaws, cowboys, and explorers were fascinating. Highly recommended.
This is a great museum. Well worth a visit
We decided to go through the museum after we walked around town. There were a lot of displays and a lot of historical information. Well organized. The staff there was very helpful and answered all of our questions.