The McDonald History Center, located at the McDonald Trail Station, utilizes hundreds of vintage photographs and news articles to provide visitors with a comprehensive overview of the long history of the local area and the community.
The historical center includes exhibits on these famous McDonald natives, among others:
- Jay Livingston, who wrote “Buttons and Bows”, “Que Sera Sera,” and “Silver Bells” to name a few. His brother, Alan, was president of Capitol Records, created BOZO the Clown, brought the Beatles to America, and wrote and produced cartoons for Warner Brothers and Walt Disney.
- Mitsie Welch (Marilyn Cottle) with her husband, Ken, wrote the Carol Burnett Shows.
- Most recent McDonald stars include NFL coaches Martin Schottenheimer and Marvin Lewis.
Other historical topics featured in exhibits include:
- The settlement of McDonald by John McDonald in 1775.
- The 1865 arrival of the railroad, and its importance.
- McDonald’s great oil boom of the 1890s, which was responsible for much of the town’s development.
- The extent and importance of the area’s coal industry.
- Community cornerstones, including churches, hotels, schools, the fire department, sports, trolley system, newspapers, early 1990s scenes from around town and more.