Nation’s Leading Firearms Museum Gets Extreme Makeover

Buffalo Bill Center of the West
Buffalo Bill Center of the West

Buffalo Bill Center of the West

USA -( The Buffalo Bill Center of the West has announced that its Cody Firearms Museum is about to undergo a full-scale renovation.

When complete, the renovated museum will exhibit more firearms than currently on display and feature a more interpretive experience for all museum visitors.

“The transformation of the Firearms Museum promises to be extraordinary,” says Ashley Hlebinsky, the CFM’s Robert W. Woodruff Curator. “The hours and hours of interviews, research, planning, and brainstorming are leading to a stunning design—one that will engage and educate everyone from the firearms novice to collectors and researchers.”

Hlebinsky explains that the CFM renovation is set to display thousands of firearms, interpreting more than 700 years of history. When complete, the new galleries include the evolution of the firearm, military history, western history, modern shooting sports, and embellished arms. The front of the museum is dedicated to an orientation experience for people unfamiliar or newer to firearms.

There, they can learn basic principles, including safety. Throughout the museum, several educational simulators are available to enhance the visitor experience. And for collectors and enthusiasts, the museum design features technical and comprehensive displays of firearms, not only arranged historically, but also by manufacturer.

“The reimagining of the Firearms Museum looks at not only how guns were used, but why they’re important to the understanding of our nation’s history,” Hlebinsky continues. “There’s no doubt that the CFM is a destination museum for gun enthusiasts, but because of the four other museums on site, we’re possibly the only gun museum in the country who receives a large number of people who are not as familiar with firearms and their histories. The ‘new’ CFM opens in June 2019; make sure to visit the museum in its original configuration and make a return trip to see the changes.”

Buffalo Bill Center of the West Remodeling Plans
Buffalo Bill Center of the West Remodeling Plans

The project has already garnered a $300,000 Sustaining Cultural Heritage Collections grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) to upgrade environmental controls and improve the CFM’s fire and security systems.

In addition, the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) recently awarded the Center a Museums for America grant of $255,000 toward exhibition planning.

Ashley Hlebinsky, Cody Firearms Museum Curator

“Visitors are sure to appreciate the reimagined museum,” Executive Director Bruce Eldredge observes. “We’ll have improved exhibit techniques with a larger proportion of our firearms collection on view, coupled with vastly improved interpretive elements.”

“The CFM interprets the entirety of firearms history with more than 7,000 firearms created and produced by manufacturers and artisans from the 15th century through today,” Hlebinsky adds. “And we’re always adding to the collection.”

About Buffalo Bill Center of the West:

Since 1917, the award-winning Buffalo Bill Center of the West in Cody, Wyoming, has devoted itself to sharing the story of the authentic American West. The Center, and affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution, is currently operating its winter schedule, open 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Thursday – Sunday.

For additional information, visit or the Center’s pages on Facebook and Google+.

  • 4 thoughts on “Nation’s Leading Firearms Museum Gets Extreme Makeover

    1. Just came back from Cody. There are lots of shops within a short walk from the museum. Plus the museum has 5 different museums, one of them is the firearms museum. A very quaint town, don’t miss it. Also there is a shooting range just west of the museum where you can shoot old flintlocks, prescussion rifles as wellas modern weapons, including a 6 barrel Gatling gun ( my favorite).
      You and your wife will both enjoy Cody!

      1. No malls, this is Cody, Wyoming! Take her along, if not for the amazing gun collections, for the rest of the museum. Because… Baby you’re worth it! (And she’ll love it.)

    2. Used to live 80 miles away from that museum, dearly loved it! The Charles M Russell Gallery is also worth the visit, the sculptures paintings, just nothing less than spectacular!

      Now I want 250 miles away so I can’t get over as often as I’d like!

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