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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.


Local History Matters: Early Treasures from the Collection

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.

Adult Archaeology Program: Digging for information about local archaeology? Come dig with us!

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.

Tompkins County Timeline

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...

With major support from: