McDowell House Museum
McDowell House Museum is a restored and furnished house museum with a historic pharmacy and two gardens! Come visit this National Historic Landmark where medical history was made. McDowell House is the former home and office of pioneering surgeon Dr. Ephraim McDowell.
Here on Christmas morning 1809 in an upstairs bedroom, Dr. McDowell performed a surgical experiment on a brave and desperate woman named Jane Todd Crawford. Without medical intervention, Mrs. Crawford was doomed to die a slow and painful death from a huge abdominal tumor. Dr. Ephraim McDowell dared to try the impossible, surgically removing the abdominal tumor. This type of surgery had never been done before. Anesthesia, antibiotics, and modern sterilization techniques were unknown. Take a personally guided tour and hear the dramatic story!
Due to the recent spike in COVID-19 we will be closed for tours from Thanksgiving through New Year’s Day.
Our gift shop remains open and our staff will continue working.
If you cannot visit us, please see our virtual tour!
Standard Admission Rates
Admission is $8 for Adults, $7 for Seniors (62+) & Active Military, $4 Youth (13-18), $3 Children (5-12), and Free Preschool (0-4).
Our gift shop is open. Our hours are 10-12:30 & 1-4 Monday-Friday. We are open some Saturdays, please call ahead.
Items can also be purchased through mail order. Please call (859) 236-2804 during regular museum hours or send an inquiry to
Are you related to Dr. McDowell? If so, please take our Family Survey
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