Tehachapi is full of rich history, and that history is displayed in the town’s museums, which are full of art, exhibits and many more treasures. Through these museums, visitors learn how Tehachapi has become the town it is today.
At the Tehachapi Museum, visitors will see a rare example of art history that gives them a glimpse into the many generations who have passed through and settled in the region.
Tehachapi’s roots began with the Kawaiisu, who arrived in the region about 1,500 years ago, says the Tehachapi Heritage League. The first permanent settlers were ranchers and farmers. But the Tehachapi we know today didn’t come about until 1876 with the progress of the railroad.
The Tehachapi Museum structure was built in 1931 in the popular art deco architecture of that era, according to the League. It served as a branch of the Kern County Library system until 1982 when the Tehachapi Heritage League moved its museum operation to this location.
Tehachapi Museum, located at 310 S. Green St., is open from noon to 4 p.m. Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Call 822-8152 for more information.
Errea House Museum
Directly across the street from the Tehachapi Museum is another museum that dives into Tehachapi's early life.
Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the Errea House is the oldest house in the area, dating to the 1870s.
Around 1900, the house, which is named after a Spanish Basque family who lived in the home for more than 70 years, was moved on log rollers to its present location.
The house features a refurbished parlor, dining room, kitchen, bathroom, bedrooms and covered porch, and it gives visitors a view of life in rural Tehachapi.
The Errea House Museum, located at 311 S. Green St., is open from noon to 4 p.m. Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Call 822-8152 for more information.
Tehachapi Depot Railroad Museum
There's something for everyone at the Tehachapi Depot Railroad Museum. The museum features four great rooms, hundreds of train items on exhibit, a working train signal garden, a play lot for kids, a gift shop and more.
The museum is a replica of one of the few buildings that remained standing following the 1952 earthquake. The building was completely destroyed in 2008 by a fire just as the project to restore it to its original condition was nearly finished.
The museum offers free tours to visitors; however, donations are welcomed. It is open from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Thursday through Monday. Take note that Mondays are Maintenance Day for the trains, so they may not run until late afternoon.