Museum Info

Boonshoft Museum of

2600 DeWeese Parkway
Dayton, OH 45414
(937) 275-7431
Fax (937) 275-5811
TTY (937) 278-6076

Directions & Map


Monday – Saturday
9:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.
12:00 p.m.–5:00 p.m.

Closed: New Year's Eve, New Year's Day, Thanksgiving, Chistmas Eve, Christmas Day, Easter

General Admission

Children (3-17) $11.50
Seniors (60+) $12.50
Adults $14.50
Children under 3 and members are FREE.
Help us create a fun, safe environment for all our visitors! Children under 16 should always be accompanied by an adult in the Museum.
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CFC #36476


How do we get objects and specimens for the Collections?

ShellsThe Dayton Society of Natural History gets objects for its Collections almost entirely through donations. Many Miami Valley residents have lived in other countries, or have traveled to distant places for work or vacation. These people often bring back specimens from the natural world (such as shells, rocks, fossils) and from the ethnographic world as well (such as clothing, jewelry, or household items). In some cases, these items are donated to the Society when the visitor returns home. In other cases, items may have been kept within a family for decades and are left to the Society in a bequest as part of a will.

Most of our collections are the result of either donations or research activities by Society staff. In rare cases, an item may be purchased for our collections, depending on how well it fits into the DSNH's collecting policy, and whether the Museum has funding to purchase the item. We do not often purchase specimens, especially antiquities, for a number of reasons. Foremost is our concern that the commercialization of archaeological objects results in the destruction of archaeological sites for profit and the loss of the contextual information that is essential to interpreting a specimen. Similar ethical challenges exist for natural objects in that collecting specimens that are commercially valuable often requires diminishing the stock of rare or endangered species.

Fossil CollectionsItems that are offered for donation are considered carefully to ensure that the Society has the capability to care for the object, that accepting the specimen would be in compliance with state and federal collecting laws, and that the item has potential for research, education, or exhibition. For example, anthropological specimens should have good provenience for research purposes. Provenience refers to the contextual information that accompanies an item, indicating where it was made or found, what it is made from, when it was made, who made it, and where it was collected and by whom.

We do not normally collect historical artifacts or documents, which would include most objects made or used in American culture after A.D. 1800. These items fall outside of our scope of collecting and are more appropriate for other existing collecting organizations, such as Dayton History (formerly Montgomery County Historical Society and Carillon Park).

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We are a 501(c)(3) Non-Profit Organization


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Under Construction

  • Kids' Playce is currently under construction. Look for brand new additions to this exhibit starting in the fall through early 2016!

What is your favorite exhibit at the Museum?

Science On a Sphere® - 23.3%
Water Properties Table - 20.3%
Cassano’s Pizza Kitchen - 21.6%
Recycling Center - 16.6%
The Courthouse - 8.5%