Welcome! The History Center in Tompkins County helps you use the tools of history to understand your past, gain perspective on the present, and play an informed role in shaping your future.
The material culture of history is as varied as the people who live in a community. Objects from cookware to coverlets, from paintings to petticoats all tell the story of the people who came before us. History museums collect many things that don't always seem obviously "historical." But these artifacts reflect the myriad aspects of everyday life and teach us about how our predecessors lived, how they worked, what they wore, and what kind of people they were.
Join us this summer at the Eight Square Schoolhouse as we explore activities based on the 1869 diary of thirteen year old Carrie Manning, a local farm girl who left us a day by day glimpse of her life through her writing. Learn about local herbs from our garden, craft your own journal, create homespun crafts and more!
The History Center in Tompkins County is offering a one-week adult archaeology program at the historic Eight Square Schoolhouse this August. Learn archaeological field techniques and research skills to develop new and exciting perspectives on local history.
The History Center in Tompkins County opened their new exhibit Captains, Commerce, and Community: The Impact of the Erie Canal on Tompkins County on Friday, September 5th. The artifact-based exhibit explores the lasting effects of the Erie Canal on Tompkins County.
Retrace our local history from geological times to the present day through a permanent photo exhibit in our entry hallway.Life in the 1890's
Explore an interactive exhibit about people's daily life in the 1890's, with a 19th-century country store, an authentic cash register and a large-scale replica of the Eight Square Schoolhouse...