Last updated: 3/31/2013
Rye, New York
Street Address
1 Purchase Street
Rye, NY 10580
Mailing Address
Rye Historical Society
Rye, NY 10580
phone: 914-967-7588
Tuesday - Friday9 AM - 4 PM
Saturday10 AM - 3 PM
No charge. Open to the public. Free tours daily.
Gift Shop
Group Tours
Sheri Jordan, Executive Director
phone: 914-967-7588

The history of Rye is told through its people: Native Americans who lived here long ago, European settlers who arrived in 1660, Patriots and Loyalists who struggled during the Revolutionary War, slaves who worked on the farms, merchants who set up shop and suburban commuters who sought refuge from the city. The tools they used, houses and roads they built, letters they wrote and work they did all tell their stories.


The Rye Historical Society was founded in 1964 by a group of concerned citizens who banded together to preserve, restore and protect the Square House, an 18th century inn located on the Village Green in Rye. After faithfully restoring the Square House, the Society has maintained it as a house museum. In 1980, the Society received its accreditation from the American Asssociation of Museums.

The Society acquired the Timothy Knapp House, Westchester County’s oldest surviving house, in 1992, restored it and opened it to the public in 2001 as an archival and research center. The Society continues to serve the community through school visits and programs, docented tours, vacation and summer camp programs, lectures, exhibits, walking tours and numerous family and community events throughout the year.


The Knapp House Archives

The Knapp House Archives contain over 25,000 items pertaining to local history, including photographs, maps, census data, books, pamphlets and manuscripts. The collection also includes the Parsons Family Papers, an important collection of papers from the late 19th and early 20th centuries from Herbert Parsons (a U.S. Congressman), his wife Elsie Clews Parsons (a prominent anthropologist) and John Parsons.

A state-of-the-art fire suppression system has been installed at the Knapp House to protect the archives and the structure. Documents, photographs and rare books are kept in a limited access, climate-controlled area. The Rye Historical Society plans, over time, to digitize the collection and make the archives accessible on-line.

Access: General Public

Appointment required: No


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Ramp to front door

Wheelchair Accessible




Gift Shop

Group Tours

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Richmond, Virginia

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