The building was unoccupied until Rock Springs Centennial Celebration in 1988. The society's predecessor, the Centennial Museum, opened on June 4, 1988 after only a few months of planning and designing. Local residents loaned or donated artifacts volunteers created exhibits to show what it was like to live here in the late 1800s and early 1900s. The Centennial Museum was a great success and plans were made to make it a permanent part of the city. In 1991-1992, the building was restored to its 1890s condition.