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Current Exhibits

Black and white photo of steam engine crossing a trestle in front of mountain

Requiem for Steam: The Railroad Photographs of David Plowden

January 14 – April 16, 2021

Naples Depot Museum

Our latest special exhibit on loan from the Center for Railroad Photography & Art has been stationed at the Naples Depot! Requiem for Steam: The Railroad Photography of David Plowden was created by the Center in conjunction with the renowned railroad photographer. Plowden traces his fascination with railway steam power back to his earliest memories. It was through his pursuit of documenting locomotives that Plowden hit upon the notion of becoming a photographer. He worked as an apprentice to O. Winston Link & studied with Minor White & Nathan Lyons before striking off on his own. After the rise of diesel locomotives’ dominance, Plowden trained his cameras on myriad facets of American industry and infrastructure. Throughout his career, the railroad has remained a common thread. The photographs in Requiem for Steam preserve the living beauty of his beloved locomotives while continuing to show the railroad’s presence in the ever-changing American landscape. See in them the power of the steam locomotive, the pride of railroad men, and the lasting imprint of steel rails across the continent.

All Collier County museum locations offer free admission.

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Fish, Fruit, and Fine Dining:
Marco Island’s Food Culture

April 6 – July 10, 2021

Today, Marco Island is a lovely vacation and retirement destination with nearly every type of food style and dining establishment you could ask for, especially if you like fish. The first Americans moving to the island starting in the 1870s quickly learned what the Calusa had known: the fishing here is great. But did you know Marco Island was once vital to providing pineapples, mangoes, and other citrus fruits to the rest of the U.S? Visit to learn more about Marco Island’s Food Culture.

All Collier County museum locations offer free admission.

Deep Lake Fruit Co.

Everglades Oasis: Plumbing the Depths of Deep Lake’s History

through May 29, 2021

Museum of the Everglades

Everglades Oasis: Plumbing the Depths of Deep Lake’s History explores the fascinating history of the area surrounding Deep Lake, a geological anomaly situated nineteen miles north of Everglades City. Once the home of a Seminole Chief, it was later the site of a commercial grapefruit enterprise, complete with its own narrow-gauge railroad carrying the fruit to port in Everglades for transport. It was the first southwest Florida real estate purchased by Barron Gift Collier in what would eventually become Collier County. Now a part of the Big Cypress National Preserve, only traces of the railway as well as ruins of a road prison, and Collier’s luxurious hunting lodge remain, but the region’s rich history lives on.

All Collier County Museum locations offer free admission.

Coney Island Couple

Coney Island: Visions of an American Dreamland

April 6 – May 25, 2021

Collier Museum at Government Center

For more than 150 years, Coney Island, a strip of sand at the mouth of New York Harbor, has occupied a singular place in the American imagination. From a beginning as a watering hole for the wealthy, through its transformation into an amusement and entertainment mecca for the masses, to its struggle for renewal in recent decades, an extraordinary array of artists have viewed Coney Island as a microcosm of the American experience. The exhibition brings to life the excitement of Coney Island, showing visitors how its magnetic world of attractions has become a touchstone for American mass culture and popular recreation.

Throughout the exhibition, artifacts display how the modern American mass-culture industry was born at Coney Island. The exhibition investigates the rise of American leisure and traces Coney Island’s influence on amusement parks and popular culture throughout the country. Photographs, ephemera, film clips, and hands-on interactives immerse visitors in the experience of Coney Island.

All Collier County museum locations offer free admission.

Forgotten Florida banner with photos of children of farm workers opposite beach goers

Forgotten Florida: Photos from the Farm Security Administration

January 19 – April 19, 2021

Immokalee Pioneer Museum at Roberts Ranch

The Farm Security Administration developed and administered aid to farmers and farm workers during the Great Depression. Visit and discover the images that agency captured that show the Depression as it affected Florida’s diverse population of sharecroppers, transient agricultural workers, and African Americans. See the contrast in lifestyles between residents of tourist camps along the coast, the wealthy winter visitors and the middle class, who were an increasingly important part of our state’s developmental direction. This exhibit is made possible thanks to the Friends of Collier County Museums and the Museum of Florida History.

All Collier County museum locations offer free admission.