About Oren Dunn - Tupelo's City Museum
In April 1983, Oren Dunn approached Tupelo city officials and proposed creating a museum in the existing buildings located in what is now Ballard Park. Dunn planned to use donated funds for renovations and to display items loaned by local residents, businesses and his own collection. His proposal was granted. To legalize his position, he asked for a salary of $1 a year and he went to work.
Dunn received two converted milk barns, once part of Forest Lake Farm, owned by Mr. and Mrs. Rex Reed. The Tupelo City Museum opened in August 1984. In following years, the museum acquired several historical buildings and collections that helped the museum grow to what it is today.
Dunn continued to work at the museum until he passed away in early December 1996. On December 17, 1996, Tupelo city officials renamed the Tupelo City Museum to the 'Oren Dunn Museum of Tupelo' to honor its founding curator. The museum's name has been changed to Oren Dunn City Museum.
Mr. Dunn's strong foundation helped the museum grow into an extensive historic site. Since its opening, the museum has drawn thousands of students, tourists and local patrons each year. It has undergone several changes throughout the years, but the museum staff continue to uphold Mr. Dunn's dream through tours, exhibits and preservation.
The Oren Dunn Museum accepts donations of items pertaining to Tupelo, Lee County and the Northeast Mississippi area. If you are interested in having your items placed in the Oren Dunn Museum you must complete the Deed of Gift form and return it to the museum.