University of Iowa Mobile Museum

The University of Iowa Mobile Museum launched in 2014 as a partnership between the Office of the Vice President for Research and Economic Development, the Office of the State Archaeologist, and the Pentacrest Museums.

The Mobile Museum inspires visitors to understand the world by bringing exhibits with cutting-edge research, one-of-a-kind artifacts, and interactive digital media to Iowa’s communities statewide.  We promote interdisciplinary partnerships and collaborations to present UI research and stimulate understanding, appreciation, and pride for the University of Iowa and the state.

Our travel season is April 1st through October 31st. There are no costs associated with bringing the Mobile Museum to you. To plan a visit to your community, please complete this form. If you are a school and would like Mobile Museum to visit you, please fill out this form


2018 Exhibits


2017 Exhibits

The Mobile Museum features three physical exhibits:

Oneota Archaeological Connections

Our state was named after the Ioway Indians, whose ancestors are known to archaeologists as the Oneota. Explore what University of Iowa archaeologists know about these communities of innovative farmers and hunters who lived in villages across Iowa from about A.D. 1000-1650. See incredible artifacts on display, and learn how archaeologists work with Iowans and descendent Native American tribes to make sure all places, people, and artifacts connected to archaeological sites are well-cared for and respected.

Delving Deep: Scientific Discoveries from Iowa's Ancient Sea

Researchers from the Iowa Geological Survey discovered evidence of a meteorite impact near Decorah, Iowa in Winneshiek County. This event took place during the Ordovician Period, 465 million years ago, when Iowa was covered by a warm shallow sea. The meteorite created a deep crater in the sea floor. The unusual environment within the crater allowed for the extraordinary preservation of a unique assemblage of fossils which reveal new information about Ordovician sea life.  One of the most spectacular fossils found is that of a giant eurypterid, sometimes called a "sea scorpion". It was 5 to 6 feet long and the top predator in its environment. View a life size model of this animal and learn about other creatures from Iowa's ancient past.

Speaking of Work: The Iowa Labor History Oral Project

How has work in Iowa changed over time? What jobs have women and men held, and how have workers’ experiences and struggles shaped our state? Every Iowan’s story contains unique answers to these questions. Forty years ago, the Iowa labor movement began working with The University of Iowa and State Historical Society of Iowa to record and preserve these stories through the Iowa Labor History Oral Project (ILHOP). Today ILHOP continues to gather stories of new generations of Iowa workers. Come learn about oral history, listen to the voices of the past, and ask yourself, “What’s my story?”

Digital Exhibits

Two interactive digital touchscreens let visitors learn about research and creative activity happening in a variety of UI units.  

Space and Power Requirements

If you’re planning a Mobile Museum visit, it’s important to make sure your space can accommodate us. We need a 20-foot by 40-foot parking area on a firm, level surface. The Mobile Museum also has a 110-volt electrical hookup that can use a 15-amp, 30-amp, or 50-amp plug. Don’t have an outlet we can plug into?  No worries—we can use our generator.

If you have any questions, please call (319) 335-2898 or email us at

2017 Mobile Museum Partners

Managing Partners

Collaborating Partners

Calendar and Events


Old Capitol Museum
UI Economic Development - We Mean Business
State Hygienic Laboratory