2 females looking at exhibits inside Lake Wales History Museum

Lake Wales History Museum

Lake Wales History Museum features permanent exhibits from Lake Wales history, its industries, a railroad layout and caboose as well as seasonal displays.

Lake Wales History Museum will give you the inside track on this area’s history and heritage through exhibits set inside a building built by the Atlantic Coast Line Railroad in 1928. The Museum is just 4 miles from Bok Tower Gardens.

Train Depot Museum

Originally a train depot, the Lake Wales History Museum features exhibits beginning with the foundation of Lake Wales in 1911 as well as the formation of the city, industry, places of interest and developments in the 19th century that led to the settlement of the area.

Museum Exhibits

Since the Central Florida History Museum opened in 1976, it has been a resource center for the public. It is a place where the public can enjoy educational programming, exhibits, and events that highlight the history of the area.

The Lake Wales History Museum includes both chronological and thematic exhibits. Chronological exhibits cover land development and the evolution of the city itself, while thematic exhibits highlight the cattle, citrus and turpentine industry, and tourism.

The Train Master’s Desk

This original over-sized train master’s desk overlooks the Florida Midland Railroad which currently serves more than 25 businesses delivering food-related products, chemicals, lumber, stone, building products, fertilizer, citrus juices, pumice, and limestone.

Prehistoric Canoe

One of the most beautiful pieces in the History Museum is a Prehistoric Dugout Indian Canoe. The 21-foot canoe was discovered in Lake Hancock in 1994. Carbon-dated by scientist at the University of Arizona, the Dugout Indian Canoe is more than 1,020 years old.

Gift Shop

A small gift shop features a variety of traditional museum offerings as well as a hats, bags, t-shirts and citrus label merchandise.

Visit the Museum

Admission to the Lake Wales History Museum is always free. If you have questions, don’t hesitate to speak with Bartholomew Delcamp, the museum’s curator. He is a wealth of knowledge and clearly enjoys telling the story of how Lake Wales came to be.


Carillon Tower at Bok Tower Gardens in Lake Wales

Bok Tower Gardens

Historic Bok Tower Gardens, a national historic landmark, features two hiking trails, 50 acres of gardens, the 20-room El Retiro…

See Details
3 women looking at citrus themed Polk County exhibits inside Polk County History Center in Bartow, FL

Polk County History Center

Housed in a 1908 courthouse, this museum showcases the history of Polk County. Galleries rotate exhibits every two months. Includes…

See Details
Exterior of 3-story Wonder House in Bartow, FL

Wonder House Historic Tours

The rebuilding and remodeling of the Wonder House was covered by episode 9 of the Netflix show Amazing Interiors. Owners…

See Details
water ripples used as email signup background

Subscribe to EMAIL LIST

Join our email list and stay up to date with all the great things happening in Florida’s Sweetest Spot.