SULPHUR — The Brimstone Museum is more than halfway to its goal of securing funding for a permanent exhibit on Sulphur’s history.
Thom Trahan, Brimstone executive director, told The Lake Charles American Press that about $120,000 of the estimated $212,000 needed to complete the project has been secured.
The estimated cost includes development, construction and production costs. The museum is seeking donations from the city, industries and residents.
In June, the museum accepted the donation of a 900-square-foot building, which will house its administrative offices, restrooms and a small gift shop.
The original plan was to expand the museum by building a new wing, but Trahan said renovating the old building will save money.
Construction will begin once the museum receives a permit from state inspectors.
“We’ve gotten a lot of calls asking about the exterior of the donated building,” he said. “People drive by and see it’s an old tin building, but we haven’t been able to do anything with it yet.”
Trahan said he’s had an outpouring of positive feedback regarding the exhibit and the museum’s expansion.
“People are really excited,” he said. “We haven’t had a permanent display in a long time. We’ve done several traveling and temporary displays, but this will be good for local schools and the community. It will give them a way to learn the history of their town.”
The exhibits will include artifacts, photos and stories contributed to the museum over the past four decades.
The display also will showcase modules on the sulfur mines and the Frasch mining process, local industries and various people from the city’s history.
Trahan said the museum is seeking additional pictures and artifacts from the community.
“In the upcoming week we will be posting on our Facebook page different pictures we are looking for,” he said. “Some of the things we will be asking for are pictures of the old theaters and drive-ins that were once in Sulphur.”
Construction is expected to be complete by March 2014, when the city will celebrate its centennial.
The Brimstone Museum has been in Sulphur since 1974 as a private nonprofit.