Jefferson Barracks Telephone Museum, Saint Louis

#12 of 38 in Museums in Saint Louis
History Museum · Hidden Gem · Landmark
The Jefferson Barracks Telephone Museum is housed in a beautifully restored 1896 building that is on the National Register of Historic Places. It is located in the 426-acre historic Jefferson Barracks Park which is a 15 minute drive south of downtown St. Louis.

Members of the Telecom Pioneers, a non-profit 501(c)(3) telephone company employee service organization, and their families and friends have spent over 66,500 hours in repairing and renovating the building.

The self-guided, accessible museum has many hands-on, how-things-work displays. The displays were created to inspire an interest in engineering and history. Boy Scouts can utilize the museum to meet one of their Inventing and Engineering merit-badge requirements.

Besides its extensive collection of telephones manufactured from the 1900s through 2000s, the Jefferson Barracks Telephone Museum also contains:

• A working Central Office Step Switch.

• Operator switchboards from the 1920s and 1960s.

• Military telephones from WWII through the Vietnam War.

• Hundreds of telephone-related equipment and tools.

• A telephone pole complete with climbing equipment.

• Hundreds of pieces of telephone-related memorabilia from the 1880s through the 2000s.

• A large variety of novelty telephones.

• A sculpture of Alexander Graham Bell and replicas of his 1876 Liquid Transmitter and 1877 first Commercial Telephone.

Admission costs $5 for adults, $4 for seniors 60 years and older and $3 for children ages 5 to 12. Children 4 years and younger and active military members are admitted free.

Guided tours are available for groups of 10 or more and should be scheduled at least two weeks before the tour.

Enjoy nostalgia from the early years of the telephone. It’s a fun family adventure, an educational field trip for students and an enjoyable group outing.
Plan your visit to Jefferson Barracks Telephone Museum and a wealth of other attractions, well-known and undiscovered, using our Saint Louis tour planning site.
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Jefferson Barracks Telephone Museum reviews

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102 reviews
  • We love going to smaller museums that are more focused in their presentation. It is small but packed with artifacts and documentation. Carol, the volunteer docent, gave us a marvelous guided tour...  more »
  • What a wonderful Spring Break outing on an unexpectedly cold day in St. Louis. Surprisingly the kids (ages 13, 12, 11 and 8) were all interested and engaged throughout our tour...many thanks to our...  more »
  • Must be one of the largest collections of telephone equipment history in the country. My wife and I greatly enjoyed the tour and discussing the history of our past employment. The museum is in great shape and well kept by a group of dedicated volunteers. Don’t forget to see the working example of a step switch. If your kids have never seen a rotary dial telephone or the brick cell phone then take them here.
  • Very historic and interesting for both me and my wife. They have a huge variety of telephone and telephone equipment. Many we had never seen before. The docent there took the time to give us a very detailed and educational walk through the museum.

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