Museums

Philmont’s museums are open to the public for no fee. You can view
operating/tour hours
, explore our Photo
Archive
and Document Archive, and learn more
about each of the museums below.

National Scouting Museum – Philmont Scout Ranch

In December of 2016, the Boy Scouts of America announced the decision to relocate the National Scouting Museum to Philmont Scout Ranch in northern New Mexico. Supported by generous donors, the National Scouting Museum – Philmont Scout Ranch was built to allow the organization to share the rich history of Scouting with more visitors, including the tens of thousands of campers, volunteers and alumni that visit Philmont each year. This new building holds a library with reading and research rooms, a gift shop with jewelry, books and mementos, two large exhibit halls and an 88-person conference room. For decades, the National Scouting Museum has played an important role in preserving and telling the rich story of the Boy Scouts of America and the positive impact Scouting continues to have on youth and families. The museum is committed to preserving the rich, 100-plus-year history of the Scouting movement by collecting, organizing, preserving and displaying some of Scouting’s greatest treasures, including 600,000 artifacts.

This collection not only documents Scouting’s unique influence on American culture, but also tells the story of a movement that has positively affected the lives of more than 110 million young people. The museum’s move to Philmont–where 32,000 people visit every year–will introduce even more people to Scouting’s story and introduce
unique opportunities to showcase parts of the collection throughout the country. The National Scouting Museum’s
Philmont home will be the primary place to see Scouting memorabilia, but the BSA’s expansive collection of Scouting
collectibles will be spread far and wide. Additionally, this transition allows the BSA to reinforce its commitment to
making many parts of the collection and archives digitally accessible. It allows the BSA to share some items for
showcase at local councils and at the three other national high adventure bases: the Summit Bechtel Reserve in West
Virginia, the Florida Sea Base, and the Northern Tier National High Adventure Bases in Minnesota and Canada. In other
words, this new chapter for the National Scouting Museum will mean more Scouts get a glimpse into the BSA’s powerful
past.

Camping gear, uniforms, service projects and more tell the story of Scouting in Exhibit Hall A. The history of
Philmont Scout Ranch and the Great Southwest fill Exhibit Hall B. Study the ranch’s trails on an over-sized
topographical map, watch an old mud wagon undergo on-site restoration and view priceless pieces of pottery and art
work of Ernest Thompson Seton. Beginning June 24, feel free to walk through the new building and join us on Saturday,
September 15, 2018 at 11 a.m. for the Dedication. Everyone is invited!

Villa Philmonte


Waite Phillips built the Villa Philmonte as the summer home for his family on the Philmont Ranch. It was completed in 1927 and was designed in Spanish
Mediterranean style. Restored to the period when Phillips owned the ranch, it now serves as a memorial to him and his
generosity to the Boy Scouts of America. You can view guided tour hours and call
us
to make a reservation.

Museum Gift Shop

The museum shop carries
Southwestern Indian jewelry, Pendleton blankets, kachina dolls, pottery, and regional books.

Seton Memorial Library

The Seton Memorial Library is home to
the personal art, library, and natural history collections of the founder and first Chief Scout of the Boy Scouts of
America, Ernest Thompson Seton. Feel free to contact us
with inquiries about tours, donations, archives and collections.

Kit Carson Museum at Rayado

Philmont lies on part of a land grant given to Carlos Beaubien and Guadalupe Miranda by the Mexican
government in 1841. Mountain man Lucien Maxwell founded a colony on the grant on the Rayado River in 1848. A year
later, he was joined at the settlement by frontiersman Kit Carson. Their ranch on the Rayado was visited by many
traders traveling on the Santa Fe Trail. In 1950 the Boy Scouts of America built an adobe museum at Rayado to serve
as an interpretive area to portray its history and recount the exploits of Maxwell and Carson. It was named in honor
of Kit Carson. Staff at the Kit Carson Museum dress in period clothing and demonstrate frontier skills and crafts
like blacksmithing, cooking, shooting, and farming. Each room in the museum is outfitted with reproduction furniture
and objects typical of New Mexico in the 1850s. The Rayado Trading Company, located at the museum, sells books, maps,
reproduction tools and equipment, moccasins, and blankets. The Kit Carson Museum is seven miles south of Philmont’s
headquarters on New Mexico Highway 21. Summer hours are 8 AM to 5 PM daily. Admission is free. The museum is open
only for special events during the rest of the year. LEARN
MORE
.

Historic Chase Ranch Museum

Founded in 1869, the Chase Ranch was
successfully owned and operated by the Chase family for over 143 years. The historic adobe ranch house offers a
glimpse of ranch life starting around the time of the Colfax County land grant war, through the territorial &
statehood periods and into modern times.

This ranch and the Chase family where instrumental in transforming western ranching into what it is today! The
historic adobe ranch house showcases ranch life from the era of the Colfax County War through the territorial and
statehood periods into the 21st Century. Family books and favorite mementos are on view throughout the home. Gretchen
Sammis was the last of the Chase family members to live on the ranch. She devoted her life to teaching in the public
schools and taking care of her land and cattle. Gretchen was in the Cowgirl Hall of Fame. On Gretchen’s death in
2012, the ranch fell under the directorship of the Chase Ranch Foundation.

Philmont Scout Ranch works closely with the Foundation in continuing ranch operations and in maintaining the Chase
Ranch House as a colorful, educational museum. During the summer months, guided tours are available of the main
house, grounds, orchards and tack room. Site includes restrooms, picnic amenities and a gift shop.