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AMSE's Big Move

Oak Ridge Today | DOE Oak Ridge Office

The American Museum of Science and Energy (AMSE) is back to regular business hours following its move to Main Street Oak Ridge.

Kenneth R. Tarcza, manager of the U.S. Department of Energy's Oak Ridge office, said in a press release AMSE's new location ensures the museum remains a central fixture in the community. AMSE lays out the history of the city's contributions to energy technology, national security, and the Manhattan Project. 

AMSE opened in 1949, less than five years after Oak Ridge's existence was made public. Originally called the American Museum of Atomic Energy, the facility moved into its longtime home on South Tulane Avenue in 1975.

Several years ago, the Department of Energy decided to get AMSE off its books. That led to a 2016 agreement that tranfesrred the museum - and its future - to the city. AMSE's transition to its new Main Street Oak Ridge location took place over the last year. Originally 50,000 square feet, the museum has downsized to 18,000 square feet. It's a staple tourist attraction in the area, and sees about 65,000 visitors annually. 

The new location features updated attractions and new interactive exhibits. One item that didn't make the move? The historic flat top house, which can now be viewed at the Children's Museum of Oak Ridge.

This story was researched and written by WUOT All Things Considered host Hannah Martin and WUOT News intern Levi Johnson.

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