Information on:

Rockford - Burpee Museum of Natural History

737 North Main Street

The mission of Burpee Museum of Natural History is to inspire all people to engage in a lifetime of learning about the natural world.

Museum History

Burpee Museum of Natural History was begin as a Works Progress Administration project. The WPA was set up by the federal government to help create jobs during the depression of the '30's. The Museum was established in 1941 and opened to the public on May 24, 1942. The current complex is made up of three buildings—the Solem Wing, the Manny Mansion, and the Barnes Mansion.


Felicia Lagers

Tuesday, March 13, 2018
We came for a homeschool activity. Staff was very friendly and helpful. All displays are well maintained and in working order. We will be back again. Can't wait for the scales and tails exhibit coming soon. Very pleased with our experience. Price is reasonable 8 for adults and 7 for kids. Our favorite is Jane the dinosaur!

Jeffrey Dodson

Tuesday, Jan. 30, 2018
It's never easy or even appropriate to speak poorly of an institution that endeavors to educate. The Burpee Museum of Natural History is by no means a definitive statement on the broad natural science; however, it is an earnest attempt to educate its patrons on the natural history of the area -- from geology to botany to insects to fish and to larger mammals, as well as a quality paleontology section featuring some impressive fossils and reconstructions. Let there be no doubt about it: the Burpee is a small space, and its educational value is very much a local affair. The price of admission is, to my mind, a bit steep (my son and I visited on a Friday afternoon, and it was $8/each), particularly for a purely educational museum. I'm sure they have discounted prices for schools and other groups, but even moving through the exhibits at an intentionally slow pace, it only took 45 minutes or so to cover the three-story space. Nevertheless, I can recommend the museum unequivocally, if for no other reason than those associated with it are genuinely committed to the sciences, as should we all be in this strange point in our national zeitgeist, in which science is under siege by those who denounce science and reject the scientific method for textural mythology and pseudo-sciences.

David Pedersen

Friday, Dec. 15, 2017
Excellent natural history museum located near downtown Rockford, Illinois. They have everything from Dinosaurs to soil samples. Three floors of exhibits and interactive activities. There is a gift shop on the first floor. The place is always clean and the staff are always friendly. Definitely worth a visit if you're in the area and want to see some bones and fossils!

Rick W

Saturday, Feb. 17, 2018
Great exhibits. Jane is fantastic. They are doing great things... Looking forward to see what happens next.

Mali S.

Monday, Jan. 1, 2018
Very clean museum and tons of interesting exhibits. Every month there are special events. There are also donation days where there is free admission but optional donation. It is a very peaceful and quiet museum. I think it's great for families and children who prefer a more calm and quiet environment.

Burpee Museum of Natural History is not affiliated with AmericanTowns Media