Reopened in 1992, the Peoples State Forest Nature Museum features mounted taxidermy specimens of many mammals and birds that are native to Connecticut. Freshwater fish specimens are also displayed.
Display cases contain artifacts from the historic Barkhamsted Light House site, many animal skulls, interesting rocks and minerals found in Connecticut, an insect collection, and much more.
A Light-up display board helps to identify animal tracks and plant species. Early charcoal-making and its significance is explained. Photographs identify local flora and fauna.
In the 1930s, 250 men occupied Camp White, a Civilian Conservation Corps camp on West River Road in what is now the American Legion State Forest in Barkhamsted. Some of the projects completed by the men include building the Museum, creating trails and roads through the forest, and planting many of our present-day trees. The layout of Camp White is beautifully illustrated in a diorama which was made by a former CCC member.
There are eight trails that cover approximately 10 miles in Peoples State Forest. Two of the trailheads are located directly behind the Museum. These trails wend their way through hilly terrain taking hikers past scenic streams, spectacular overlooks, and interesting historic sites. See the Trails page for more trail descriptions. Trail maps and information are also available from museum staff.