After nearly two decades of delay that prompted a grand jury investigation, the National Museum of Industrial History in eastern Pennsylvania is slated to open its doors on August 2, reports the Allentown, Pa., Morning Call. The long-anticipated, Smithsonian-affiliated facility will tell the story of America’s industrial revolution with hundreds of exhibits in a 40,000-square-foot former steel plant in Bethlehem, Pa.
The museum was proposed in the late 1990s but the project languished for years, despite raising $15.8 million in grants and donations. A scathing report issued in January 2014 by a Northampton County, Pa., grand jury blamed wasteful spending and mismanagement by the museum’s longtime CEO, who was forced out of his post a year later. A January 2015 consent decree signed by a state judge and the nonprofit museum organization set a two-year window for the institution to open.