Throughout the United States, there are several great anthropology museums. It was difficult to narrow down, but I've narrowed it down to the top ten. Because they all have such diverse specialties that each offers, I can't possibly say which of the ten is better than another. I think it would depend on what you're looking to get out of your visit. For that reason, I've chosen to order them geographically. Let's take a little journey around the United States, shall we?
* Let's start in Los Angeles, California
Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County
This museum is attractive on the outside and amazing on the inside. It's like going into another place and time! The exhibits have a very diverse range that will keep you occupied for hours! This three floor museum was opened in 1913 as the Museum of History, Science, and Art. Over the years, it has been separated into individual entities.
* Let's travel a little further south to San Diego
San Diego Museum of Man
Among its many positive attributes, San Diego Museum of Man is kid friendly. It's truly a place where the entire family can have a lot of fun. Among their permanent exhibits are "Footsteps Through Time: Four Million Years of Human Evolution" and the interactive "Discover Egypt" exhibit in the children's discovery center. They also hold an "Annual Indian Fair". This year will be the 25th year.
* It's time to trek across Arizona into Albuquerque, New Mexico
Maxwell Museum of Anthropology
This museum has collections of a variety of items found in North, South, and Central America, Africa, Asia, Australia and the Pacific Islands. However, being based I New Mexico, their main emphasis is on the southwestern United States. The ancestors exhibit brings you on a journey though time as you enter a reconstructed cave setting that includes Ice Age drawings and sculptures.
* Let's travel east to Columbia, Missouri
University of Missouri Museum of Anthropology
This museum offers classes to children that include games, music, and fun projects. Their permanent exhibits include "Native American Lifeways" and "African Axes".
* Let's take a trip southeast to Knoxville, Tennessee
Frank H. McClung Museum
This museum is located at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville. Their permanent exhibits include "Human Origins", "Ancient Egypt", and "Geology and Fossil History of Tennessee". What brings great variety to the museum is its special exhibits. Currently, they have an exhibit in forensic anthropology. This will be on display from January 19, 2008 to May 7, 2008.
* Let's go even farther south to Gainesville Florida
Florida Museum of Natural History
This is another museum that is very kid friendly. They have a discovery room with displays that are "hands on" for exploring. They also get very involved with the community by having different events such as a butterfly release and fossil digs.
* Let's go north up the eastern seaboard to our nation's capital
Smithsonian Institute Nation Museum of Natural History
There are tons of permanent exhibits and plenty of exhibits that change. This is also a museum that is very kid friendly and welcomes school field trips. They also have a "hands on" discovery room for kids. Among the permanent exhibitions is The Kenneth E. Behring Family Hall of Mammals. This exhibit explores the evolutionary stages of mammals, including humans.
* Let's get ready to take a journey north to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Carnegie Museum of Natural History
This museum has a lot to offer including a movie theater called "Earth Theater", a "hands on" "Bone Hunters Quarry" exhibit. There's also a discovery room for children.
* Okay, it's time to move eastward within the state to Philadelphia
University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology
This museum is unique for the various workshops that it offers its visitors. In addition to the workshops, this museum is holding its 26th annual "Maya weekend". Is it not different enough for you? In April 2008, they have an exhibit arriving called "Surviving the Body of Evidence". They say it will be an interactive exhibit.
* We will end our trip around the country in New York City
American Museum of Natural History
The museum caters to local children by offering loads of programs such as summer camp and "sleepover" programs. Their exhibits cover a large variety ranging from fossils to butterflies.