the Shafer Historical Museum



10:00am - 2:00 pm

Due to heat and potentially smoky air quality conditions, the museum buildings will be hosted by a docent only from 10:00am - 2:00 pm. The grounds are still open for viewing on your own, dusk to dawn. 

Our volunteer hosts thank you for your understanding! Enjoy the afternoon at a swimmin' hole! 

Summer Hours

SUMMER 2024 

The Museum buildings will be open** & hosted by docents:

Daily 10:00-5:00

Memorial Day through the week after Labor Day: 

Open weekends in September

Grounds & outdoor displays are available on your own during daylight hours, closed at dusk.

Archives and the museum office are available by appointment.

Winter Hours

Grounds available during daylight hours on your own to visit, featuring mining and farming collections outdoors. Buildings are CLOSED. 

Please note: Snow is not cleared on the museum grounds. The path between Castle Avenue and Riverside Avenue/Hwy 20 is NOT maintained or cleared and should not be used in ice/snow conditions. Any use is at your own risk. 

Archives and the museum office are available by appointment.

**Please note, special circumstances may change these hours at any time. In our neck of the woods, that could be extreme heat, smoke, wildfire, snow&ice or volunteer availability to staff the museum. If the museum is not hosted when you arrive, you are welcome to explore the grounds on your own.

Museum Archives

All year 'round, photos, documents, books and research materials are accessible in our archives office by appointment. If needed, research services are available for a small fee that directly supports preservation efforts. Contact us to come in:

Selections of the Museum's collections are available ONLINE.


Admission is by donation. Suggested minimum is $5 per adult. Youth are free.

The museum relies on admissions to share and preserve the history of the Methow Valley, yet is available to all regardless of ability to pay. Please give generously!

Cash, checks or contactless credit card payments accepted. 

We are a Blue Star Museum, offering free admission to active duty military and their families.

Location & Parking

285 Castle Avenue, Winthrop, Washington

Easy, plentiful on-street parking is available on Castle Avenue. A footpath from Riverside Avenue/Hwy 20 provides (steep uphill) walking access from the main street of Winthrop. 


Ramps to buildings. Mixed surfaces: Paved walkway or wooden boardwalks around the buildings, and gravel on the grounds. Parking on Castle Avenue is level, close to the entrances and has ramps.

Guided Tours

Docents lead tours by reservation - please email staff@shafermuseum, phone or check in with the docent on-site. All tour guides are volunteers so advance requests are recommended.

Large Group Tours

Available by request for schools, tour operators or other organized groups. Please phone or email at least 2 weeks prior to your desired date or (509) 380-9911. Guides are volunteers and we need time to ensure staff are available to meet you.  A tour fee and admissions fees are collected in advance or at the time of your tour.  

What are your favorite places? 

The Shafer Museum is one of Ralph Munro's! The former Washington Secretary of State visited the museum and shares what he likes the best in this video. 

Blue Star Museums provide free admission for active duty military and their families. Thank you for your service, and welcome to the Shafer Museum!