True crime television shows have a huge following. If you’re a fan of this genre, why not explore exhibits relating to some of history’s worst crimes and killers. Check out these five true crime museums in the United States.
Opening in the fall of 2016, Alcatraz East promises to be an exciting museum for true crime fans. The Ford Bronco driven by OJ Simpson during the famous car chase is one of the many exhibits. See Ted Bundy’s VW Bug and John Dillinger’s 1933 Essex (Hudson Motor Company) up close. View photos of Jesse James after he died. View a real lie detector test up close. There will be hundreds of exhibits, many interactive, and all spread over two floors to ensure there is ample room to explore at your leisure.
See if you can win free tickets to Alcatraz East by following the museum on Twitter (@alcatrazeast). If you want to visit, head to Pigeon Forge, Tennessee.
Take a trip to Alcatraz and uncover the prison’s history. As you wander the grounds and building interiors, you get to see the cells the men were housed in, and explore the island the famous prisoners allegedly managed to escape.
The only way to see Alcatraz Island is by purchasing a ticket that includes the ferry ride to the island and then an audio tour of the cellhouse. Alcatraz Cruises recommends buying your tickets at least three months in advance as tours fill quickly. Adult tickets (12 and up) start at $33, and there are discounts for seniors and children ages 5 to 11. Toddlers are free.
The Cleveland Police Museum
The Cleveland Police Museum is on the first floor of the city’s police headquarters on Ontario Street. It’s open Monday through Friday from 10 am to 4 pm, weather permitting. There is no charge to visit the police museum, though donations are accepted.
There are many exhibits found within the museum, including artifacts dating back to the days of Prohibition. The city’s darker history during the Kingsbury Run murders, and a look at Eliot Ness, the man who played an integral part in ending Al Capone’s reign.
International Spy Museum
Open daily from 9 am to 7 pm, the International Spy Museum on F Street in Washington D.C. Purchase a pass into the museum or pay the extra for a combo ticket that pairs the museum with the Operation Spy experience. Tickets range in price from $21.95 to $28.95 for adults. Senior citizens, fire/law enforcement/military members get discounts, as do children ages 7 to 11.
There are many reasons this museum stands out. Start with Operation Spy. You get to fill the shoes of a spy for an hour. Become part of a team in a fictional country. You’re taken to a command center where you’re given your mission. You must solve the crime by breaking codes, putting your escape techniques to the test, and questioning your suspects. Spy in the City takes you on a GPS adventure though a museum neighborhood. When you’re done those activities, check out the spy-related gadgets that are on display. From the glove that conceals a small gun to James Bond’s car, there’s plenty to see and do in this fascinating museum.
Museum of Death
Museum of Death covers some of the more disturbing cases in history. Items on display include artwork done by Charles Manson and photos from some of the murders he and his group committed. There are crime scene photos from the Black Dahlia murder. You’ll also find replica devices used to commit executions, tools used in autopsies, and the severed head of Blue Beard of Paris. There are also videos and movies related to crime autopsies. Items on display can be very grisly to some, so caution is advised.
There is a $15 fee to enter the museum, but parking is free so you will save money there. It’s a museum you tour at your pace. Find the Museum of Death in Hollywood and at 6031 Hollywood Boulevard. There is a second location in New Orleans, too.
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