Wornall/Majors House Museums

The Past Is Present

Kansas City, MO   |
GuideStar Charity Check

Wornall/Majors House Museums

EIN: 43-1834180


Wornall/Majors House Museums brings inclusive and culturally relevant programming for youth and adults to two of Kansas City’s most important historic landmarks, the John Wornall House and the Alexander Majors House.

Ruling year info


Acting Executive Director

Mrs. Sarah Bader-King

Main address

6115 Wornall Road

Kansas City, MO 64113 USA

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Formerly known as

John Wornall House Museum

Alexander Majors House Museum



Subject area info


Historic preservation

Elementary and secondary education

Public affairs

Population served info

Children and youth


Non-adult children

NTEE code info

Museum & Museum Activities (A50)

Elementary, Secondary Ed (B20)

Alliance/Advocacy Organizations (W01)

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

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Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Field Trips & School Programs

Teachers rely on the Wornall/Majors House Museums to provide engaging and flexible field trips that fit their specific needs, tie directly into their curriculum, and can meet Common Core standards. A visit to the Wornall House or Majors House is the perfect way for teachers to enhance lessons on topics of local and national relevance, including the Civil War and Border Wars, westward expansion, communication and travel, women's history and slavery. More than 2,000 children visit the Museums annually on school field trips. Trained, energetic volunteers bring history to life for students through Museum tours and hands-on activities. Children learn to appreciate local history and develop a deeper understanding of both the American Civil War and life in America in the nineteenth century through interaction with costumed interpreters, Civil War reenactors, gifted storytellers, and volunteers passionate about youth education. The Museums do not turn away schools on a budget. We can provide support for Title I and low income school districts to ensure all children have the chance to learn about local history. In addition, we partner with Freedom's Frontier National Heritage area on their "Bus on Us" program, which can pay for up to 75% of a school's transportation costs. The Museums can also bring speakers into the classroom for schools unable to travel.

Population(s) Served

Camp Wornall/Majors immerses children in history through activities, presentations, crafts and games. Parents can enroll their children in individual thematic day camps, or combine a week of day camps for a complete week-long experience. 2018 camp themes included: Life on the Frontier, Toys & Games, Traveling Across the Wild West, Arts & Crafts, The Civil War & Battle of Westport, Native American Culture, Become a Junior Archaeologist, Plants & Animals on the Frontier, and The Life of a Soldier. Camp Wornall/Majors is for children who have completed kindergarten through age 12. When children age out of the program, they can become junior volunteers.

Population(s) Served
Non-adult children
Children and youth

Wornall/Majors House Museums operates public and private tours at the historic John Wornall House (1858) and Alexander Majors House (1856). Tours give visitors a glimpse into the lives of nineteenth century Americans, providing local and national context for key historical events and movements. Both guided and self-guided tours are offered - five days a week at the Wornall House and four days a week at the Majors House. The Wornall House formerly served as a field hospital during the Battle of Westport and tells the story of the Civil War, slavery and freedom, women's roles, and frontier life. The Majors House was built as the home and headquarters of frontier freighter Alexander Majors, who also co-founded the Pony Express. It tells the story of westward expansion, Kansas statehood and growth in technology, travel and communication. Private tours are also offered to community groups, Boy and Girl Scout troops and other organizations.

Population(s) Served

The Museums serve as a community hub and place for individuals to learn about history in a modern and relevant way. The calendar of events is ever-changing to meet the needs of the community and address popular trends and topics. General event categories include social hours, educational lectures, author readings, living history, family events and specialized tours. In addition, the Museums host several annual events that have become traditions for many in Kansas City including: Kansas City Trivia, Ghost Tours, Holiday Candlelight Tours, Boots & Pearls Barn Dance, and the biennial Garden Tour. With a small budget, the Museums create big programs by utilizing topic experts and community partnerships.  Partnerships in 2018 included: Arcadia Press, Black Archives of Mid-America, Heart of America Shakespeare Festival, KCPT, the Missouri Irish Brigade, Project Archaeology, the Slave Dwelling Project, and Strawberry Swing Indie Craft Fair.

Population(s) Served

Where we work


Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Number of public events held to further mission

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Adults, Children and youth

Related Program

Community Programs and Education

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success


Number of participants engaged in programs

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Children and youth, Adults

Related Program

Community Programs and Education

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success


Total number of volunteer hours contributed to the organization

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Children and youth, Adults

Related Program

Community Programs and Education

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success


Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

The goal of the Wornall/Majors House Museums is to make Kansas City’s past relevant, accessible, and meaningful to today’s visitors. As the caretakers of two of the city’s oldest extant homes, we have the honor of supporting our community in discovering and understanding its past. We pride ourselves on creating an approachable, welcoming atmosphere for visitors to engage with a period that was among the most turbulent in American history. Since the Wornall and Majors Houses’ histories are rooted in the Civil War and the story of Western Expansion, we also have the important responsibility of helping our visitors think about this oft-distorted period realistically, especially as this country moves to research its past more rigorously. In the coming years, we want to raise our profile among Kansas Citians and become “the place” for visitors to learn about the 19th century. As historic homes, our museums have the advantage of relatability – they allow visitors to imagine the minutiae of daily 19th century life. In the coming years, we hope to accomplish this by continuing to collaborate with other local heritage institutions and organizations; continuing to provide high-quality educational programming, exhibits and tours for all age groups; and by increasing our outreach efforts within the Kansas City community. The staff, board of directors, and volunteers are working hard over the next three to five years to become known as one of the top destinations locally and nationally where the following can take place in our community: 1)     museum goers can access history in a way that is relevant to them 2)    the house museums will serve as places to engage in dialogue about historical issues that are still relevant today 3)    help the public think critically about the past and how it effects the present

Wornall/Majors is embarking on a large-scale marketing and branding campaign for inclusive Civil War history to raise awareness for our organization and bring new visitors and program attendees to the House Museums. This opportunity was made possible through a grant from the Neighborhood Tourism and Development Fund with the City of Kansas City, Missouri. With this funding, our organization now has access to professional marketing and branding resources for the first time in our history, allowing us to compete with much larger organizations for new audiences and increase overall awareness of our mission in the community. Not only is increased marketing raising awareness of our overall mission, it additionally assists in our efforts to increase programming and establish our organization as a leader in quality inclusive civil war education for all ages. Strategies we implement include new rotating exhibits, interpretation, tours, and programming in accordance with the most innovative standards in the field of history and museum industry. Here is a list of some of the strategies our organization utilizes to reach our goal:   TOURS: Both museums highlight the marginalized people that lived and worked in the houses through interpretive material and person to person interaction with tour guides. Training is provided for new tour guides and an annual training is held that reiterates our commitment to high standards  EXHIBITS: Beginning in spring 2019 we will highlight African-American blacksmiths with a new exhibit in our blacksmith shop at the Alexander Majors barn in 2019. Recently developed is a new exhibit called Hunting Freedom: The Many Paths to Emancipation, This exhibit explores the many paths to freedom along the Kansas-Missouri border, drawing on the personal narratives of enslaved individuals who seized upon the opportunities to hunt freedom. This exhibit is also available for loan to other museums and organizations.  FIELD TRIPS: For field trips we provide primary source documents related materials and Frank Wornall’s memoirs and feature presentations by professional presenters for the Underground Railroad. SPECIAL PROGRAMS: Family Ties, a program series in partnership with the Mid America Black Archives and the Midwest Genealogical Interest Coalition (M.A.G.I.C.)., exploring history and community through family stories.

Our core assets and capabilities include: mutually beneficial community partnerships, growth in innovative and sound financial stewardship through proper board governance, the ability to demonstrate a responsible need for impactful funding support, a staff with flexible skills and backgrounds, actively engaged volunteers, and ongoing involvement with local and national organizations that guide industry standards.   Through active involvement with The American Association of State and Local History (AASLH), Freedom's Frontier National Heritage Area, The Assocation of Fundraising Professionals and other local and national organizations, our organization is able to ensure we remain vital, relevant and sustainable. As a small cultural arts not-for-profit our organization is cognizant of the positive power of that a mutually beneficial partnerships can create to accomplish our mission! The staff, board, and volunteers strive to create meaningful partnerships within the community that amplify our mission and meet and exceed the expectations of all who visit these historical institutions. Some of our recent partnerships helping us to complete this work include: Black Archives of Mid-America, the Heart of America Shakespeare Festival, KCPT, and Project Archaeology. Innovative and sound financial stewardship and governance of two of Kansas City's most iconic structures is no easy task The Wornall/Majors House Museums Board of Directors is committed to ongoing development opportunities and implementation of policies and procedures to continually ensure best practices in the field of governance and financial stewardship.

We have met goals as stated in our strategic plan for increased audiences and brand awareness through our recent grant with the Neighborhood Tourism and Development Council and are looking forward to continued success with this goal in 2019. The Learning Landscape is currently meeting and exceeding expectations for fundraising goals. In a short ten months from March to December of 2018, we raised two-thirds of the funds needed to implement the Learning Landscape project at the John Wornall House Museum. The Learning Landscape is a master plan for the grounds of the house that will allow us to take our mission outdoors and further tell the story of what life was like on the 500-acre farmstead. Our organization anticipates raising the remaining funds in the first quarter of 2019 to begin implementation in spring of 2019. Upon implementation of the Learning Landscape, the House Museums will be begin actively raising funds to support the development of an Historic Structures Report and Deferred Maintenance Plan. This plan will identify and guide key priorities for the long term care of two of Kansas City's most historic structures.

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To make fundamental changes to our programs and/or operations, To inform the development of new programs/projects

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

    We collect feedback from the people we serve at least annually, We engage the people who provide feedback in looking for ways we can improve in response, We act on the feedback we receive

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    It is difficult to get the people we serve to respond to requests for feedback


Wornall/Majors House Museums
Fiscal year: Jan 01 - Dec 31

Revenue vs. expenses:  breakdown

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info
Note: When component data are not available, the graph displays the total Revenue and/or Expense values.

Liquidity in 2021 info

SOURCE: IRS Form 990


Average of 36.02 over 10 years

Months of cash in 2021 info

SOURCE: IRS Form 990


Average of 8.4 over 10 years

Fringe rate in 2021 info

SOURCE: IRS Form 990


Average of 8% over 10 years

Funding sources info

Source: IRS Form 990

Assets & liabilities info

Source: IRS Form 990

Financial data

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

Wornall/Majors House Museums

Revenue & expenses

Fiscal Year: Jan 01 - Dec 31

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info

Fiscal year ending: cloud_download Download Data

Wornall/Majors House Museums

Balance sheet

Fiscal Year: Jan 01 - Dec 31

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info

The balance sheet gives a snapshot of the financial health of an organization at a particular point in time. An organization's total assets should generally exceed its total liabilities, or it cannot survive long, but the types of assets and liabilities must also be considered. For instance, an organization's current assets (cash, receivables, securities, etc.) should be sufficient to cover its current liabilities (payables, deferred revenue, current year loan, and note payments). Otherwise, the organization may face solvency problems. On the other hand, an organization whose cash and equivalents greatly exceed its current liabilities might not be putting its money to best use.

Fiscal year ending: cloud_download Download Data

Wornall/Majors House Museums

Financial trends analysis Glossary & formula definitions

Fiscal Year: Jan 01 - Dec 31

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info

This snapshot of Wornall/Majors House Museums’s financial trends applies Nonprofit Finance Fund® analysis to data hosted by GuideStar. While it highlights the data that matter most, remember that context is key – numbers only tell part of any story.

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Business model indicators

Profitability info 2017 2018 2019 2020 2021
Unrestricted surplus (deficit) before depreciation -$50,588 -$24,010 -$33,278 $33,180 -$23,065
As % of expenses -22.4% -10.4% -11.7% 7.0% -10.8%
Unrestricted surplus (deficit) after depreciation -$69,439 -$42,861 -$52,539 $13,919 -$42,326
As % of expenses -28.4% -17.2% -17.3% 2.8% -18.2%
Revenue composition info
Total revenue (unrestricted & restricted) $202,203 $344,911 $387,368 $297,461 $182,055
Total revenue, % change over prior year -30.1% 70.6% 12.3% -23.2% -38.8%
Program services revenue 25.3% 13.2% 10.7% 6.4% 12.2%
Membership dues 4.0% 2.4% 2.2% 5.5% 7.5%
Investment income 0.1% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Government grants 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 7.5% 0.0%
All other grants and contributions 48.1% 62.9% 76.2% 73.3% 65.3%
Other revenue 22.5% 21.4% 10.9% 7.4% 15.0%
Expense composition info
Total expenses before depreciation $225,683 $230,025 $284,343 $475,141 $213,153
Total expenses, % change over prior year 7.7% 1.9% 23.6% 67.1% -55.1%
Personnel 59.6% 57.8% 47.1% 24.3% 52.0%
Professional fees 4.2% 6.6% 1.3% 1.0% 3.7%
Occupancy 9.8% 11.7% 10.3% 5.0% 10.8%
Interest 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Pass-through 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
All other expenses 26.3% 23.9% 41.3% 69.7% 33.5%
Full cost components (estimated) info 2017 2018 2019 2020 2021
Total expenses (after depreciation) $244,534 $248,876 $303,604 $494,402 $232,414
One month of savings $18,807 $19,169 $23,695 $39,595 $17,763
Debt principal payment $0 $0 $0 $0 $0
Fixed asset additions $0 $0 $0 $0 $0
Total full costs (estimated) $263,341 $268,045 $327,299 $533,997 $250,177

Capital structure indicators

Liquidity info 2017 2018 2019 2020 2021
Months of cash 9.0 9.7 12.2 2.8 2.9
Months of cash and investments 9.0 9.7 12.2 2.8 2.9
Months of estimated liquid unrestricted net assets 4.3 3.0 1.0 1.4 0.9
Balance sheet composition info 2017 2018 2019 2020 2021
Cash $169,191 $186,729 $288,832 $108,985 $51,617
Investments $0 $0 $0 $0 $0
Receivables $0 $5,430 $13,232 $6,002 $3,623
Gross land, buildings, equipment (LBE) $1,385,932 $1,385,523 $1,385,523 $1,385,523 $1,385,523
Accumulated depreciation (as a % of LBE) 4.8% 6.2% 7.6% 8.9% 9.0%
Liabilities (as a % of assets) 0.4% 0.3% 0.7% 0.1% 0.8%
Unrestricted net assets $1,400,421 $1,357,560 $1,305,021 $1,318,940 $1,276,614
Temporarily restricted net assets $82,207 $129,685 N/A N/A N/A
Permanently restricted net assets $0 $0 N/A N/A N/A
Total restricted net assets $82,207 $129,685 $266,668 $55,782 $28,010
Total net assets $1,482,628 $1,487,245 $1,571,689 $1,374,722 $1,304,624

Key data checks

Key data checks info 2017 2018 2019 2020 2021
Material data errors No No No No No


The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

Form 1023/1024 is not available for this organization

Acting Executive Director

Mrs. Sarah Bader-King

Sarah Bader-King joined the Museums in November 2014, bringing a diverse background in non-profit management, education, and journalism to her role. Prior to her role as Acting Executive Director, Sarah served as Director of Programs at the museums for nine years. Sarah is passionate about making history relatable and relevant through trendsetting programming, such as the Victorians Uncovered history happy hour series and Civil War and Go West! Field Days. She has also curated Museum exhibits and has a particular interest in researching untold stories of enslavement on the Missouri/Kansas border. Sarah has focused on serving diverse audiences by providing multiple points of entry to the Museums at all learning levels. One success has been the introduction of a self-guided tour at the Majors House, which allows visitors to explore the historic landmark at their own pace. Since 2015, public tour admission at the Majors House rose 149%.

Number of employees

Source: IRS Form 990

Wornall/Majors House Museums

Officers, directors, trustees, and key employees

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

Show data for fiscal year
Compensation data
Download up to 5 most recent years of officer and director compensation data for this organization

There are no highest paid employees recorded for this organization.

Wornall/Majors House Museums

Board of directors
as of 11/14/2023
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board of directors data
Download the most recent year of board of directors data for this organization
Board co-chair

Mrs. Elizabeth Hatting

Assistant U.S. Attorney - Civil Division

Term: 2020 - 2023

Board co-chair

Vicki Westerhaus


Term: 2020 - 2023

Esther Walker-Young

KC Visitors and Covention Bureau

John Biersmith


Jody Craig

Mid America Regional Council, Retired

Janelle Sjue

Kansas City Young Audiences

Elizabeth Hatting

US District Attorney's Office

Vicki Westerhaus


Diane Mutti-Burke

UMKC History

Eric Youngberg

NeighborWorks America, Retired

Amanda Maurin


Kelsey Johnson

Creative Planning

Pat Groshong

Media Risk Consultants

Arena Grovier

Community Advocate

Day Kerr

Historic Preservation Advocate

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Yes

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 11/14/2023

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? Candid partnered with CHANGE Philanthropy on this demographic section.


The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
Gender identity
Female, Not transgender (cisgender)
Sexual orientation
Gay, lesbian, bisexual, or other sexual orientations in the LGBTQIA+ community
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity


Sexual orientation


We do not display disability information for organizations with fewer than 15 staff.

Equity strategies

Last updated: 11/14/2023

GuideStar partnered with Equity in the Center - an organization that works to shift mindsets, practices, and systems to increase racial equity - to create this section. Learn more

  • We ask team members to identify racial disparities in their programs and / or portfolios.
Policies and processes
  • We use a vetting process to identify vendors and partners that share our commitment to race equity.
  • We seek individuals from various race backgrounds for board and executive director/CEO positions within our organization.
  • We have community representation at the board level, either on the board itself or through a community advisory board.
  • We engage everyone, from the board to staff levels of the organization, in race equity work and ensure that individuals understand their roles in creating culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.