Modoc County Historical Museum

Located in Alturas, the Modoc County Historical Museum contains several exhibits pertaining to the culture and history of Modoc County. Rotating exhibits range from prehistoric cultures to modern residents, to natural history including paleontological exhibits and a taxidermy collection of several local species.

Historic exhibits from the Modoc, Pit River and northern Paiute Tribes include Native American basketry, stone tools, beaded items, feather-work, and an extensive weapons and stone tool collection used by local people. Other prehistoric items such as Mammoth bones can be seen at the museum also.

The Museum contains possessions from every pioneer families who settled in Modoc County.  The historic archives contain information and photos on every family and significant events that have shaped the lifestyles of residents since the beginning of Alturas.  Early farm tools, Modoc County brands, dairy farms, early businesses, Kober Drygoods store, and household items from the past are exquisitely displayed for public education and entertainment. 

Additional rotating historic exhibits include medical equipment, military equipment and uniforms, photography, horsemanship and cattlemen exhibits, local people of celebrity status, musical instruments such as stringed instruments and pianos, a telephone switchboard, movie theater slides, advertising for local businesses in the past, law enforcement, homesteader farm tools, feathered fans, dolls, and glass bottles. All of the items were owned and donated by people of Modoc County.

Displays for the Central Modoc River Center as well the Alturas Chamber of Commerce are also housed within the museum.

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Latitude: 41.4794864 Longitude: -120.5421853 Elevation: 4364 ft
the best travel advice comes from the people who live here
Yvonne-Cher Skye

Seasons Open


Hours Open

Monday - Saturday 10:00 am - 4:00 pm; Sunday 12:00 pm - 4:00 pm


$2.00 per adult. Children under 16 free.

Eco-Friendly Notes

We have several wildlife and plant exhibits to instill a sense of appreciation and respect for the local animals and vegetation found within Modoc County, and that visitors become aware of the necessity of environmental stewardship to ensure the survival of local species. The exhibits consist of taxidermy animals from the region, brochures, artistic representations of the Warner Mountains, posters, and hands-on exhibits that allow visitors to feel the pelts of indigenous species.

ADA Accessibility Notes

The exhibits are spaced and displayed in a manner that allows wheelchair access.  The hands-on exhibits are placed within reach of wheelchair access stops.

Pet Friendly Notes

No pets allowed.


Do you have much on the Modoc War, which I am researching?

Dan Woodhea, 6/1/2016

Dan, I don't know if anyone has contacted you yet, but I have been to the museum before and they have quite a bit on the Modoc War.

J.B., 6/18/2016

My family the Blurtons are from Modoc and New Pine Creek. My Great Grandfather Crystal Lawson Blurton did a video for the museum in the 1980's. I was wondering if there would be anyway to view that as I live far from you. I would greatly appreciate any help you could provide as he was the greatest Grandpa ever. Yours truly, Stephanie T Blurton.

Stephanie T Blurton, 7/27/2017

Just found out that my 2nd great grandfather (Paul Lieberman) was a shoe maker at Camp Bidwell from the 1870s through his death (between 1900 and 1910). Might you have resources beyond the typical ones found online that might chronicle his life there. I am trying to confirm whether Lieberman canyon is named after him. It’s just east of Ft. Bidwell..

Mike van Beuren, 3/22/2018

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