Broken Boiler Forces Guthrie Museum To Close

Tuesday, November 27th 2012, 10:53 pm
By: News 9

After more than a century in Guthrie, the State Capital Publishing museum closes its doors indefinitely because it can't afford to pay to heat the building.

The museum houses original printing presses, which inked historic publications, typewriters from the early 1900's and linotypes. Historians say when it comes to saving this piece of Oklahoma history, it really boils down to money.

Initially they were told it would cost $60,000 to repair a broken boiler, but after several estimates officials were told it would have to be replaced at the full cost of $150,000.

The 50,000 square foot facility can't operate in the winter months without heat.

"Each one of our museums and sites was given the challenge to raise more than 17 percent of your annual budget with revenue or gifts. Most of our museum sites have been able to do that about 5 or 6 have not," said Dr. Bob Blackburn.

On a $64,000 annual budget plus a broken boiler, the State Capital Publishing Museum couldn't cut it.

"This is the first one (museum) to close. There will be others undoubtedly, but this is the first to close indefinitely," Blackburn said.

Historians are looking to re-open the museum in the spring of 2013 and are trying to get creative to raise money to replace the 30-year-old cracked boiler.

If you'd like to help, Blackburn says joins the Oklahoma Historical society by calling (405)-522-5242