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Independence Historical Museum & Art Center 8th and Myrtle
PO Box 294
Independence, KS 67301


10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
--Tues - Sat
Closed Sunday and Monday

Admission Fee
$5.00 Adults
$3.00 Ages 6-18
Free - Ages 5 & Under
Free Active Military

Holiday Hours

Closed on major holidays


New Law Enforcement Exhibit

Art Schenk is pictured in front of the new exhibit he and his wife help create. The items shown relate to the story below about the cost of construction.

Montgomery County Jail Door

The jail door on this exhibit is from the Montgomery County Jail that was located on the third floor of the Montgomery County Court House. The court house and jail were built in 1931. Prisoners were transported to the jail from a street level entrance by a private elevator. They entered this door for processing, then were taken to one of the two cells (tanks) that became their temporary home.

The door was removed from the jail in November 2015 as a result of the efforts and generosity of Arthur "Art" M. and Laverne Schenk. Art became a commissioned Deputy in 1962, Undersheriff from 1964 to 1968, and Montgomery County Sheriff from 1968 to 1988.

Montgomery Courthouse and Jail

Montgomery County was created in 1869 and by 1887 a new three-story courthouse with a jail was built in a Gothic style. By 1931 the remodeled building was considered the fourth courthouse built "leaving inside much of the original from the Gothic Style." The new courthouse was designed as Classical or New American Architecture. The 1931 rebuilt jail was touted as "strictly fireproof throughout and ventilated from three sides." It was designed to hold 84 prisoners and was "equipped with hospital cell, padded cell, separated departments for juvenile, and women prisoners." The cost of the steel contract was $18,580.

The more detail of the cost of construction is shown next to the exhibit.