The mission of the North Dakota Buffalo Foundation (NDBF) is to foster awareness of the cultural and historical significance of the North American bison. By operating the National Buffalo Museum, maintaining a live bison herd, and conducting educational programs, the NDBF fulfills this mission; plays a vital role in local, state, and national tourism; and helps to promote the bison industry. Together, the National Buffalo Museum and bison herd contribute to the distinctive character of Jamestown, the “Buffalo City”.
The National Buffalo Museum and bison herd are located at the Frontier Village, near the intersection of Highway 281 and Interstate 94 (exit 258). Museum exhibits focus primarily on the history of bison in the plains culture, but offer something for every interest. Displays include Plains Indian artifacts; a wide variety of artwork; the 19th century firearms used by bison hunters; remains of prehistoric bison; a children’s room featuring wildlife of North Dakota; and video presentation about the history of bison.
The museum also includes a gift shop containing an amazing assortment of truly distinctive and tasteful items with a bison theme. The associated bison herd currently numbers about 30 head and includes White Cloud – an extraordinarily rare, true albino “White Buffalo”. White Cloud and her four brown calves, which include Princess Winona and Dakota Thunder reside in the herd and also her only white calf Dakota Miracle born Aug 31, 2007.
The National Buffalo Museum frequently hosts educational programs and community events. In 2003, for example, museum staff met with approximately 2000 students during visits to area schools. Recent events have included White Cloud’s annual birthday Celebration; a performance by Clay Jenkinson, star of “The Thomas Jefferson Hour” on National Public Radio; the Potholes and Prairies Birding Festival; and hosting the Rolling Plains Art Gallery.
The NDBF is a nonprofit organization and derives operating funds from memberships, museum entrance fees, gift shop income and gaming. Charitable contributions are especially important and we depend heavily on the generosity of donors to continue our youth programs, develop exhibits, and maintain our facilities. Please visit the museum during your stay in Jamestown, and, if your circumstances permit, consider lending your support.
Two new items will be added to the National Buffalo Museum this year. A double set binocular will be installed on the deck so visitors can find White Cloud when she is resting under the trees or off on adventures on the distant hillside. We will also add several picnic tables for our visitors to enjoy that afternoon snack while stopping by the museum.
*These items were purchased with BCTF capital improvement funds for the 2014 fiscal year.
We would love to hear from you on ideas to that YOU would like to see added to make your experience here at the National Buffalo Museum more enjoyable. Send us an email or visit our FB page.