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The 3 Most Interesting Museums in Bowie MD

Are you a history buff? Maryland is full of rich and interesting historical sites including forts, bunkers, statehouses, and more. For a peek into American history, visit one of the three most interesting museums in Bowie MD.

1. Belair Mansion in Bowie MD

For 250 years, the Belair Mansion was simply a residence. It was built in 1745 for Governor Samuel Ogle and his wife, Anne. It later became home to the famous horseman, William Woodward. And now it’s a museum that reflects the life and times of the people who used to live there. What pieces of history will you find if you take a tour?

You can visit and tour the museum for free, but donations are appreciated. Private parties can even rent the Belair Mansion for events of 75 people or less.

  • Prints of famous thoroughbred racehorses privately issued by Woodward
  • Silver kept in the family for generations
  • A John Shaw original table (local Annapolis craftsman)
  • “The Seasons” – A series of paintings gifted to Governor Samuel Ogle from Lord Baltimore, Maryland’s Proprietor
  • And much more!

2. National Capital Radio and Television Museum

If you’re looking to visit a non-traditional museum, Bowie offers something unique. How did television go from black and white silent films to talkies and then eventually to the full-color, special effects, visually stunning movies and shows we watch today? When and how was the first radio made and how does its features compare to the modern radio? Find the answers to these questions at the National Capital Radio and Television Museum in Bowie Maryland.

You can explore two floors of exhibit galleries and even take a guided a tour! The museum also shares exhibits at the Library of American Broadcasting at the University of Maryland. This museum is free to the public.

3. Belair Stable Museum

If your a horseracing fanatic, Bowie has just the museum for you. And even if you didn’t start out with a love of horses, a visit to the Belair Mansion (number one on our list) might peak your interest. While living in that home, Governor Samuel Ogle began importing Thoroughbred horses to Belair with the goal of strengthening local racing horses. As a result, the Belair Stable (part of the Belair Stud Stable) was born!

Many famous racehorses called the Belair Stable home. Some of these horses won the Triple Crown Series, were named horse of the year, and received many other awards and accolades. Here are just a few of them:

  • Vagrancy
  • Omaha (1935)
  • Fighting Fox
  • Gallant Fox (1930)
  • Johnstown
  • Nashua (1955)
  • And More!

So if you’re a horse person, you won’t want to miss the Belair Stable Museum in Bowie MD.

Why Visit the Museums in Bowie Maryland?

Museums tell an important story, our story. They capture the spirit of a time and place that might otherwise be lost to us. We don’t want to neglect the important lessons we can learn from our past. Those lessons can have a big effect on our future if we let them. So happy exploring! We hope you enjoy visiting these historical gems.

For more information about the towns in Anne Arundel County, check out this post. And here are some pandemic-safe activities for Anne Arundel natives.