REVIEW: Bingham-Waggoner Estate History

A book made available to museum Patrons, no author listed, undated

Another great educational travel idea for anyone around the Kansas City and Independence, Missouri area is a trip down to the Bingham-Waggoner Estate located near downtown Independence. Furnished with gorgeous furniture and intact belongings of the time, this is one of the best ways to see how people lived in the past, by seeing the actual items they used on display. Granted, every single person that lived in the Estate was very wealthy, so it’s a one-sided view of history, but sometimes visiting places with such grandeur is good. This book was an informational booklet purchased in the gift shop. Much like the Chicago & Alton Book and the Bushwhacker Jail book, these are cheaply done and exist as a precursor to something like a Wikipedia article or such. I like to pick them up both as a memento and as a way to show off places I’ve been. Rather than collect shot glasses or spoons when I travel, I will always opt for books.

“The Bingham-Waggoner Mansion & Estate, sitting on over 19 acres near the Independence Square is truly a one-of-a-kind gem in Independence, Missouri. Near the Truman Presidential Library, Harry and Bess Truman’s home, the 1859 Jail & Marshall’s home, the National Frontier Museum, the Chicago & Alton Depot and the Vaile Mansion, the Bingham-Waggoner Mansion & Estate offers its own special look into an earlier era. This well preserved museum home, with more than 90% original furnishings, carpets and paintings, provides insights into the lifestyle of its wealthy 19th century residents.”

There isn’t a ton to say about this item that hasn’t been said basically. This book is basically all of the stuff my tour guide told me on the tour, including a general rundown of the family histories of occupants of the mansion, as well as information on basically every room of the house. I would not be surprised if volunteers use this book to prepare for their tours. All-in-all it’s well done for a cheap booklet and has quite a bit of information as well as pictures. If you happen to be at this museum, I’d easily recommend picking a copy up.

This is part of my series for 2021, History Boy Summer, to read more click HERE.

For more information on the site itself, click HERE.

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