One of a Kind Museum in Buffalo

March 27, 2013 Updated Mar 27, 2013 at 11:33 PM EDT

By WKBW Admin

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March 27, 2013 Updated Mar 27, 2013 at 11:33 PM EDT


Buffalo, NY
(WKBW)

Over our history people with disabilities have been treated in ways that were at times cruel and inhumane, but we've come a long way and there's only one place in the country where you can see that transformation: The Museum of Disability History in Buffalo.

It's where exhibits together with stories come alive revealing the sometimes shocking but true picture of what life was like for people with disabilities throughout history.

A straight jacket was donated to the museum by a former nurse at a school for people with disabilities in Texas.

"She gave it to me three years ago and that's just after they stopped using it...so they were still using this device three years ago," said Douglas Platt, Curator of the Museum of DisABILITY History.

Visitors can see the evolution of adaptive equipment; invalid cars manufactured for World War II veterans in Britain in the 1940s to 1970s; early Braille equipment; the establishment of institutions; posters displaying now politically incorrect terms for people with disabilities; and even sports and political exhibits plus some things we see everyday like the blue handicap parking symbol established in the late 1960s.

Guided tours are conducted by people with disabilities themselves.

Charles Degraffenried has spastic cerebral palsy but through his assistant tells us that doesn't stop him. He's been a tour guide for the museum the past five years.

The Museum of DisABILITY History is located at 3826 Main Street, Buffalo, NY 14226.