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Ardmore, Oklahoma: Great Fire, Big Explosion, Jesse James Bar Fight

Hard luck Ardmore: In Sept. 1915, a 250-tank train filled with natural gasoline exploded; 20 years before that the Great Fire destroyed most of downton. And Jesse shot a music box in a saloon. Museum is three wings with exhibits on the oil industry, transportation, military history, a transplanted pioneer cabin, a replica olde timey drug store, and the story of the Spudder Rig, a large oil rig on the museum grounds.

Greater Southwest Historical Museum

35 Sunset Dr., Ardmore, OK
Greater Southwest Historical Museum, I-35 exit 31a or 31b towards Ardmore on Hwy 199. Museum is on the left.
Tu-Sa 10 am-5 pm. (Call to verify) Local health policies may affect hours and access.
Free, Donation.
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Visitor Tips and News About Great Fire, Big Explosion, Jesse James Bar Fight

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Camp display.

Great Fire, Big Explosion, Jesse James Bar Fight

The military portion of the museum was the best part. Unfortunately, the Jessie James part was taken off exhibit for about 6 months for inventory/remodeling.

[Jamie, 07/19/2014]
Great Fire and the Big Explosion

In the late 1800s and the early 1900s, two separate disasters hit Ardmore, Oklahoma. The great fire and the explosion greatly affected the town of Ardmore. This beautiful exhibit, "From the Ashes," tells the story not only through words, but three-dimensional artifacts such as melted nails, steam-pump fire engine, photographs and other related objects.

[Sarah Hamby, 03/08/2006]
Music Box Shot By Jesse James?

A story of a barfight including Jesse James is accentuated by the large wooden music box that sits in the museum. The best part is the large bullet hole that pierced the bottom of the object by a shot fired during the brawl.

[Sarah Hamby, 03/04/2006]

Nearby Offbeat Places

Magnetic HillMagnetic Hill, Springer, OK - 12 mi.
Collings CastleCollings Castle, Davis, OK - 18 mi.
Fried Pie DinosaurFried Pie Dinosaur, Davis, OK - 19 mi.
In the region:
The Great Hanging, Gainesville, TX - 38 mi.

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