The historic village of Vicksburg includes a total of eleven buildings: the Cemetery, Farmstead, Gazebo, Newspaper Office and Print Shop, School, Railway Express, Township Hall, Village Garage, a Boxcar and Caboose, a General Store/Candy Shop, the Union Depot Museum, and a beautiful Community Garden. The village was created with the goal of education and preservation and offers the opportunity to experience the world much as Vicksburg residents did from the late 19th century until the early 1930s when electrification covered this rural area. Visitors are encouraged to join one of the many tours the Vicksburg Historical Society offers to get a glimpse of life in Vicksburg prior to modernization.
The charming, rural Historic Village of Vicksburg is located just 15 miles south of the downtown Kalamazoo area and is operated by the Village of Vicksburg and the Vicksburg Historical Society. The nonprofit Vicksburg Historical Society was founded in 1967 with great help from a local iconic figure named Warren Lawrence. The Historical Society houses archival collections and artifacts in the restored Depot building that was built in 1904. Work to begin to preserve the Depot and open a museum started in 1971. The Depot Museum opened to the public in 1990 and was the first of a series of buildings that would encompass the surrounding area of the Vicksburg Historic Village, approved by the Vicksburg Planning Commission in 1995.
This historic village personifies life in Vicksburg from the 1890s until around 1932, when the area was fully electrified. In addition to the Union Depot Museum, there is the Cemetery, Farmstead, Caboose and Boxcar, Gazebo, Railway Express, Newspaper Office and Print Shop, Community Garden, Village Garage, Township Hall, School, and the latest to be restored, a General Store and Candy Shop. The General Store and Candy Shop has a soda fountain that was modeled after one that once existed in downtown Vicksburg, and the General Store features goods available for purchase that shoppers consumed at the turn of the 20th century.
Combining all historic items in each building, there is a total of around 25,000 artifacts for visitors to view. Few towns across the United States have been able to preserve and capture history as Vicksburg has, and the Vicksburg Historical Society offers a variety of tours for curious visitors to catch a glimpse of what life was like in this quaint village.