Programs & Events
The Museum offers a number of recurring programs throughout the year
2nd Saturday Family Programs
Join us on the 2nd Saturday of each month for a specially themed program featuring a hands-on activity for young historians. While the Museum is closed, we will be taking 2nd Saturday on the road, with programming in various locations held in conjunction with our community partners. Follow us on social media for the latest location, subjects, and more.
March 9, 2024, 11:00 a.m.–Noon, at the Union Bank Museum, 219 Apalachee Pkwy., Tallahassee, Florida
Celebrate Tallahassee’s 2024 Bicentennial by learning about the founding and development of Florida’s Capital City. Guests will examine historic maps to understand how the community has grown and changed over the past 200 years. Guests will make their own illustrated map of Tallahassee.
History at High Noon
The Museum features casual monthly lunchtime talks by local experts on a variety of topics. Please note the location of each lecture as the presentation site may change from month to month.
The History of Florida A&M University
February 27, 2024, Noon–1:00 p.m., at the Union Bank Museum, 219 Apalachee Parkway, Tallahassee, Florida
Speaker: Dr. Reginald Ellis, Associate Professor, Florida A&M University
Dr. Reginald Ellis discusses the 136-year history of Florida A&M University. Founded in 1887, the University has achieved many successes and faced many struggles to become one of the nation’s premier Historically Black Colleges and Universities. This presentation will discuss FAMU’s history and the major events, individuals, and broader historical trends that helped to shape its development and identity.
The program is free and open to the public. Seating is limited; please reserve your spot by visiting https://bit.ly/HistoryHighNoonFebruary2024
Washington Hall: Reconstructing the History of a Tallahassee Frontier Hotel
March 26, 2024, Noon–1:00 p.m., at the Union Bank Museum, 219 Apalachee Parkway, Tallahassee, Florida
Speaker: Dr. Paulette McFadden, Public Lands Archaeology Supervisor and Law Enforcement Coordinator, Bureau of Archaeological Research
Dr. Paulette McFadden presents the results of recent archaeological investigations at the site of the Washington Hall Hotel. The hotel, which operated during the territorial period, served as a place for civic and religious activities in addition to providing room and board for guests. A fire that started at Washington Hall in 1843 was the origin of one of the most devastating disasters ever to occur in Tallahassee.
The program is free and open to the public. Seating is limited; please reserve your spot by visiting https://bit.ly/HistoryHighNoonMarch2024
20th of May— Emancipation in Florida
The Knott House Museum and the John G. Riley Museum host an annual celebration of the 20th of May. Learn more about this event and other community activities here.
On January 1, 1863, President Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation, freeing enslaved people in the rebelling Southern states. More than two years later, on May 10, 1865, Union General Edward McCook arrived in Tallahassee to take possession of the city from Southern forces. General McCook established his headquarters at the Hagner House, now known as the Knott House. On May 20, he declared the Emancipation Proclamation in effect. Formerly enslaved people celebrated this announcement with a picnic at Bull Pond, today's Lake Ella. Annually since 1865, communities in Tallahassee have celebrated May 20th as Emancipation Day.
Summer Reading Program
Each July the Museum offers a Summer Reading Program based on a theme and featuring a weekly program with a book reading, a craft, a guest speaker, and other hands-on activities to engage young readers. The programs are geared to ages 10 & under and are free and open to the public. A reading list of theme-related books focused on Florida is provided and readers who reads six or more books from our list will receive a special certificate from the Secretary of State and the Museum of Florida History. This is a great opportunity to get everyone of all ages excited about reading!
Florida History Day
Sponsored by the Museum of Florida History, Florida History Day is an annual, statewide activity that enhances the teaching and learning of history in middle and high schools. Florida joins 49 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, American Samoa, Guam, and international schools in East and South Asia as an affiliate of National History Day® (NHD). NHD promotes history in the classroom by offering students the resources and support to do original research about people, ideas, and events of the past. Learn more about Florida History Day here.