SARATOGA SPRINGS, NY – As Scully and Mulder would say, “The truth is out there.”
In fact, the truth is much closer now – it’s in Saratoga Springs. The X-Files Preservation Collection museum had its grand opening last week and its ribbon cutting on Friday and is now open for business.
At the museum’s grand opening, co-owners Jim Thornton and Kelly Anthony received congratulatory citations from representatives of Senator Daphne Jordan and Congresswoman Carrie Woerner, as well as a warm welcome to the Saratoga County Chamber of Commerce . The museum was praised by several guests at the grand opening as a great addition to the culture and art of Saratoga Springs.
Located at 4284, route 50, the museum is an immersion in the universe of the famous television series.
At the entrance to the store, there is a small retail space where fans can purchase show-related items. There is also a small collection of items from other fandoms, although Anthony hopes that over time, when the museum has a stronger clientele, she and her husband Thornton can put their collecting skills to good use and help customers to acquire hard-to-find items from all kinds of fandoms.
Behind the retail space is the real star of the show – the museum is filled with a huge assortment of props, costumes and sets which are all used on screen, meaning you watch the actual objects that have been seen in episodes of “The X-Files.”
Alongside all the elements used on screen, there are pieces that draw attention to the enormous amount of work that went into making the show a success. Items such as the molds used to make props, set layout diagrams and on-set photos document everyone who lent their talents to the show, from make-up artists to special effects teams to builders. ‘accessories.
“The purpose of the X-Files Preservation Collection is to preserve the history of the show and shine a light on all the people behind the scenes who made it possible,” Anthony said. “A lot of people put a lot of work into the show, and it shows.”
Additionally, the walls are covered in “X-Files” memorabilia such as posters, magazine covers, and photos of the cast. The museum also includes “X-Files” video games and a pinball machine.
It’s important to Thornton and Anthony to preserve “The X-Files” and its legacy because the show literally saved Thornton’s life. A fan from the very beginning, Thornton says watching “The X-Files” kept him home and off the streets. He overcame a drug addiction by becoming quite addicted to the groundbreaking television show.
From there, giving back to the show and keeping its legacy alive – just as it kept it alive – became a passion project.
This passion is now shared by many people. Last week’s grand opening brought together people from all over the world, including show creator Chris Carter. Although not currently airing, the series is still praised for being ahead of its time, well written and expertly produced.
“The writers of ‘The X-Files’ were top notch,” Thornton said. “That’s why the show was so good. It spans many genres, not just horror — it gets into sci-fi, conspiracy theory, and drama. The people behind the show are what made it so good and gave it its staying power. Everyone who worked there was so professional.
“It still holds today,” Anthony agreed. “You can watch it today and it’s still a good story. There’s something timeless about it.
Thornton has been a fan of the horror genre in movies and TV since a young age, which made it easy for him to fall in love with “The X-Files.” He says what makes horror great is the story being told – something that is sadly often overlooked.
“There’s a big misconception with horror movies,” he explained. “You don’t need a lot of blood and guts to make a good story. In fact, the best horror stories are often the ones with the least gore.
The X-Files preservation collection is so large that it cannot all be viewed at once. Anthony says half of the collection is currently in temperature-controlled storage, but items will be periodically recycled to keep the museum fresh and vibrant. The crown jewels of the collection, what Thornton and Anthony consider their favorite pieces, are those that mark the beginning of the parade.
These include the laptop Chris Carter used to write the show’s pilot episode, storyboard maps from the pilot, and documents that document the show’s cast and crew research.
When asked if they had any favorite “X-Files” episodes, Thornton, Anthony and their son Brett all said it depended on the day, although there were episodes they kept coming back to. For Thornton, it’s “Shapes” from Season 1. Anthony’s favorite episode is “Chinga” from Season 5. And Brett prefers “DPO” from Season 3.
The X-Files Preservation Collection is open daily from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. .youtube.com/c/XFilesMuseum, or follow on social media with the handle @xfilesmuseum.