Last updated: 1/29/2012
Ithaca, New York
Street Address
401 East State Street
Ithaca, NY 14850
Mailing Address
401 East State Street
Ithaca, NY 14850
phone: 607-273-8284
web: www.tompkinscountyhistory.org
Hours
Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday11 AM - 5 PM
Services
Gift Shop
Online Gift Shop
Special Event Rental
Group Tours
Staff
Matthew Braun, Executive Director
Description

The DeWitt Historical Society was formed in 1935 as a revival of two earlier historical societies of 1863-64 and 1888-1905. The first, the Ithaca Historical & Scientific Society, was started by Ezra Cornell, and lasted for less than two years. DHS was first formed in 1899 to promote Tompkins County history, and was named in honor of Simeon DeWitt, a prominent early Ithacan. This society met to hear papers, erected commemorative plaques, and started a collection of books and objects that was housed at the public library after the society disbanded in 1905.

A place for discovery

The History Center Research Library serves casual readers and scholars, school children, local historians, genealogists, and professional researchers. Staff and volunteer Research Assistants facilitate research on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday, from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. or by special appointment. Along with providing access to primary source materials, The History Center is equipped to make professional quality photographic copy prints and scans of photographs from the collections. Photocopying services are also provided for a fee.

Gift Shop - Online or Stop Bye!

Consider The History Center Book Store your source for gifts with the local flavor of Tompkins County. We carry variety of books, toys, and treasures that are perfect for the holidays or anytime. And remember - History Center members receive a 10% discount! To place a credit card order order over the phone, call (607) 273-8284 x 2, Tuesday, Thursday, & Saturday, 11-5 or e-mail welcome@thehistorycenter.net.

Eight Square Tote Bag

The newest item in the store is the eye-catching and handy Eight Square Schoolhouse tote bag. These spacious classic cotton box totes feature stylish black trim, heavy-duty double carrying straps, and a roomy outside pocket. Best of all, they sport an interesting and attractive sketch of the Eight Square Schoolhouse, circa 1890. Made exclusively for The History Center, these totes are practical and stylish and can handle anything from your laptop or library books to groceries or beach gear. At only $12.95 each, they're a bargain

Volunteer at The History Center

Being a volunteer means active involvement with the Museum and its staff in a close-knit, friendly atmosphere. Opportunities to volunteer are available in all areas: collections, research, administration, museum store, marketing, education and with our Eight Square Schoolhouse Living History Program. If you are interested in becoming a volunteer, please call the museum at 607-273-8284.

Mission

The History Center in Tompkins County, New York, is a center for learning, using the stories and artifacts of local experience to examine history in both local and national dimensions. Our vision is to change and enhance people’s understanding of the past in order to better prepare them to deal with the present and create their future.

History

What began as the Ithaca Historical and Scientific Society founded in 1863 by people whose names still resonate today: Ezra Cornell, Josiah Williams, Douglas Boardman, and others, later evolved into the DeWitt Historical Society and has now transformed into The History Center in Tompkins County.

Educational Programs

The History Center in Tompkins County, New York, is a center for learning, using the stories and artifacts of local experience to examine history in both local and national dimensions. Our vision is to change and enhance people’s understanding of the past in order to better prepare them to deal with the present and create their future.

Publications

From its deep local roots, The History Center has evolved into a successful cultural and educational mainstay in Tompkins County. “We engage, educate and inspire people of all ages to uncover the stories, delights, and insights to be found in the unique raw materials of history.” Says Executive Director Matthew Braun. “We are a center for learning where you are guided to discover connections to the past, better understand the present, and create new perspectives for the future.

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    Gift Shop

    Online Gift Shop

    Special Event Rental

    Group Tours

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