MAHOMET, Ill. (WCIA) – The Museum of the Grand Prairie in Mahomet is receiving another national recognition.

It achieved accreditation from the American Alliance of Museums, the highest honor for museums in the country.

Officials said the museum has now been accredited for 50 straight years. The recognition signifies excellence to the museum community, funders and visitors.

The museum shared on its website that since its founding in 1968 as a facility of Champaign County Forest Preserve District, it’s their mission to inspire visitors to create connections to the natural and cultural history of Illinois.

Officials said the founding collection from William Redhed was comprised of objects from a pre-industrial age. The museum was called the Early American Museum, as Redhed preferred that name, for 40 years.

The museum changed to its current name in 2011. Officials said the term Grand Prairie, a 19th-century designation for the vast untamed American Midwest, recalls the cultural and natural heritage.

Nowadays, visitors can see thousands of artifacts representing the diverse history and population in Illinois.