Moving History Forward: Be a Part of History
Help The History Center in Tompkins County move by passing an interesting array of museum artifacts along a human brigade made up of your friends and neighbors stretching 1/3 of a mile from 401 E. State St. to 110 N. Tioga St. (the new Tompkins Center for History and Culture).
Bring your Community Spirit. Learn about our Local History. Make New Connections. Get your Picture taken with the Ithaca Kitty. Share Your Local History. Be part of the Human Moving Brigade.
The History Center in Tompkins County is moving to the Tompkins Center for History and Culture (
) at the end of 2018 or early 2019. We have a lot to pack and move including both archives and object collections. We have already started the process and have set aside items to be moved by the brigade.
The last time The History Center moved was 25 years ago (when we moved from the Clinton House to the Dean of Ithaca Building on East State Street). The History Center is delighted to be moving to the Tompkins Center for History and Culture and to be co-located with sister organizations.
There are many ways to be involved and to have fun! Wear vintage attire, dress as your favorite local figure or if with a group wear something that identifies that affiliation (hats or t-shirts with logo, uniforms, etc.)
Celebrate. At the end of the brigade, there will be a brief presentation, music and food.
We need 330 people!
as an individual, family or group.
Executive Director of The History Center in Tompkins County
Authentically Rural Weekend
Friday, October 5 through Sunday, October 7 (at various times and locations)
Ithaca Heritage would like to welcome you to Tompkins County, where rural areas uphold long-held traditions that contribute to the county's vibrant cultural and economic life. Come explore our rural history, architecture, landscapes, and culinary bounty on a New York State Path Through History weekend October 5-7, 2018. You'll love the small-town vibe of Dryden (our focus area this year) that encourages us all to slow down and appreciate the Finger Lakes landscapes and farm-to-table flavors.
Bookstore & Gift Shop Highlights
In conjunction with the upcoming events related to our local aviation heritage, these items will be on SALE 50% OFF until September 29, 2018:
Bessie Coleman & Amelia Earhart Dolls from Girls Explore Series
Coleman was the
first black woman pilot.
Amelia Earhart was the first woman aviator to fly across the Atlantic Ocean. On her visit to Ithaca she landed where the Hangar Theatre is today.
Our former map room is now featuring the WE ARE ITHACA display. This multi-faceted portrait project was conducted in 2017/2018, and uses the power of photography to engage diverse communities within our city in dialogue and celebration of our complex identity. At the heart of WE ARE ITHACA is the photographic portrait project carried out by Project Director/photographer Robyn Wishna, a small group of college students and volunteers. This is a project of the Community Arts Partnership made possible by a grant from the Park Foundation.
Come and post what you love about Ithaca on the exhibit wall!
Exploring Tompkins County:
Municipality Display Case
Danby: Its Rural Side, Its Historic Side, And More
Exploring Tompkins County display is a collaboration between The History Center in Tompkins County and Tompkins County's municipal historians. This new exhibit samples artifacts of early Danby. We thank Mary Ann Barr, Town of Danby Historian, for providing her knowledge and time to create this unique exhibit.
First Friday Gallery Night: Farewell to The History Center's Murals
Friday, September 7, 6:00 PM Talk, Doors Open 5:00 PM to 8:00 PM (at The History Center)
In conjunction with First Friday Gallery Night and The History Center's approaching move, we invite you to give a farewell to The History Center's murals, now located on the building's south side facing the creek. The murals feature some of Tompkins County's recognizable people and themes from our past. The 6:00 PM program will include a
by the artist Marriann Loveland and a screening of Terry Harbin's video of the art process. Light refreshments will be provided.
HistoryForge Data Entry Bee Party
Saturdays, September 8 & September 22, 11:00 AM to 1:00 PM (at The History Center)
Come volunteer at our next transcription bee! Light refreshments will be served with lots of fun and an educational opportunity that will make Ithaca history come alive. Be sure to bring your laptop. Sign up to volunteer here: https://thehistorycenter.net/volunteer-historyforge
Visioning Alternative Futures of the Community
Thursday, September 20, 7:00 PM to 8:30 PM (at Tompkins County Public Library, Borg Warner Community Room)
An Historical Perspective
A look at how local government, non-profits and businesses make plans that shape the future. One panel will address history of change and a second panel will briefly highlight new local comprehensive plans. State-wide perspectives, in terms of development goals and strategies, will be shared.
Featured speakers: Barbara Blanchard, Former Councilwoman and Legislator, and Paul Beyer, Director of Smart Growth NYS
Doors open at 6:30 PM - Snacks provided.
Anatomy of a Project
Thursday, September 27, 7:00 PM to 8:30 PM (Town of Ithaca Board Room, 215 N. Tioga Street, Ithaca, NY 14850)
A look at how complex development projects are planned, financed and implemented. We will examine how a developer approaches a project and what financial considerations go into the planning of a project. We will explore the municipal approval process and also look at the role of public incentives and how they impact a project's bottom line.
Featured Speaker: Robert 'Bud' Sweet, National Development Council
Doors open at 6:30 PM - Snacks provided.
Engaging History with Carol Kammen
Thursday, September 13, 12 PM to 1:15 PM (TCPL, Local History Room, 101 East Green Street, Ithaca, NY 14850)
In the sessions, Carol Kammen, County Historian presents documents from the county's past for reading aloud and discussion. Participants are encouraged to think about what the documents meant at the time of their creation, and to discover what they might tell us here and now. The focus is on thinking historically and discovering the pleasure and knowledge of personal encounters with ordinary documents such as letters and diaries.
AAUW-Ithaca Program to Highlight the Power of Collective Action
Monday, September 17, 4:30 PM (at The History Center)
The Ithaca Branch of the American Association of University Women (AAUW) is celebrating its centennial by inviting the public to a program that highlights the power of collective action to bring social change. The featured speaker is Risa Lieberwitz, professor of Labor and Employment Law in the School of Industrial and Labor Relations at Cornell University. She is also General Counsel of the national American Association of University Professors (AAUP).
AAUW is one of the foremost national organizations promoting education and equity for women and girls. Since May 1918, the Ithaca Branch has promoted collective action and social change locally. Members have organized public programs on issues of concern to women and girls and raised funds for scholarships. AAUW's Legal Advocacy Fund, which supports women nationwide in their fight against workplace discrimination, began here in Ithaca. Forty years ago the branch supported the Cornell 11, in 1980 a group of women professors who sued the university for gender discrimination, and persuaded the national association to assist faculty women fighting unfair labor practices.
"From Thomas Brothers Aeroplane Company to Thomas-Morse S-4 Scout, 1910-18:
The Origins of Ithaca's Aircraft Industry"
Talk by James Rundle
Tuesday, September 18, 7:00 PM (at The History Center)
On September 29 an original 'Tommy' S-4B Scout, built in Ithaca in 1918 and recently restored by local volunteers, is scheduled to fly at the Tompkins County Regional Airport. This talk tells the story of how an aircraft industry arose in Ithaca, just before and during the First World War, and how that new industry came to produce the 'Tommy', an advanced trainer used by the U.S. Army to train U.S. pilots bound for France.
Mixed Media: The Interplay of Sound and Text
September 20, 4:30 PM to 6:00 PM (Hirshland Exhibition Gallery, Level 2B, Carl A. Kroch Library, at Cornell University)
How do you write a sound? How do you hear a text? "Mixed Media" examines how representations of text and sound that have shaped our perceptions of the material world, tracing the technologies used to replicate and transmit them.
The exhibition features rare artifacts that illuminate 500 years of inventions that record and distribute information-from movable cast metal type to Edison's model wax cylinder-playing gramophone.
Artifacts demonstrating these transformations will be on view, along with items that explore the interactions of sound and print, such as early modern illustrations of acoustics, work by Cornell faculty who collected early field recordings of bird song, and examples of printed text rendered into audio format. "Mixed Media" will be on view from September 20, 2018 to March 8, 2019.
This exhibition is funded through the generous support of the Stephen E. '58 MBA '59 and Evalyn Edwards '60 Milman Exhibition Fund.
For more information, call 607/255-3530 or visit
Free and open to the public.
History and Science of Craft Beverages
September 26, 5:30 PM to 7:30 PM (Sciencenter, 601, 1st Street, Ithaca, NY)
History, geology, and chemistry all converge to tell the story behind the flavors of craft beverages in the Finger Lakes. Sponsored by the Museum of the Earth, the History Center in Tompkins County, the Sciencenter, and Experience! The Finger Lakes, this four-part series will stimulate your palate and your mind. Guided beer and food pairing reception with Sommelier Laura Winter Falk of Experience! The Finger Lakes. Presentation by Owner and Brewer, Ian Conboy of Lucky Hare Brewing. To register visit
Friday, September 28, 1:00 PM to 4:30 PM (Meeting
at the Hangar Theatre, 801 Taughannock Boulevard, Ithaca, NY)
For a brief time in the early 20th century, Ithaca was a thriving center of the young aviation industry. The Thomas-Morse Aircraft Corporation produced hundreds of the World War I-era "Tommy" S4 Scout planes right here in Ithaca. Explore several key sites in Ithaca related to the Tommy plane on a guided bus tour on Friday, September 28, 2018 from 1:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. Members of the Ithaca Aviation Heritage Foundation team who helped restore a 1918 Tommy plane will be on hand to tell the history of these aviation sites and their relation to the Tommy plane.
The number of seats is limited. Please register here:
The Tommy Plane Tour is an Ithaca Heritage (
) tour, in collaboration with the Ithaca Aviation Heritage Foundation (http://www.tommycomehome.org/).
Tommy's Centennial Flight
Saturday, September 29, 2:00 PM to 5:00 PM (at Ithaca Tompkins Regional Airport)
Come see Tommy fly! The Ithaca Aviation Heritage Foundation (IAHF) cordially invites you to be a part of Tommy's Centennial Flight Celebration on Saturday, September 29th, 2018 from 2pm to 5pm. The event is FREE and open to the public! The celebration will feature local food vendors, community activities, stories about Tommy, and more!
Sign up on Eventbrite: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/tommy-comes-home-tickets-47401355731
The Thomas-Morse S-4 Scout was an advanced high-speed trainer designed for the U.S. Army Air Corps and built in Ithaca, NY. The Scout played an enormous role in the early years of aviation and became affectionately known throughout the aviation world as "Tommy." IAHF's Tommy Come Home Project was conceived more than 15 years ago, and has fulfilled the dream of bringing a Tommy home, restoring it to flying condition and flying it on its 100th birthday. We'll be celebrating with a centennial flight at the Ithaca Tompkins Regional Airport - a historic event you won't want to miss!
Ithaca & Tompkins
County Visitor Profile Study
County has begun an effort to better understand our visitors through a Visitor Profile Study. We would like to hear from you about your perceptions and experiences in our destination. By completing the
survey below, you will be entered to win a $10.00 prepaid gift card. We encourage you to click the link below to complete the
We are Moving!
Election to the New York State Legislature is a momentous responsibility, and the the more information a new legislator has at his or her disposal regarding upcoming responsibilities, the better. In that spirit, each year legislators have received a handbook, or manual, filled with a wealth of information on state and national civic matters. The History Center has a large collection of these Legislative Manuals dating back to the 1860s. This one from 1932 covers more than a thousand pages of interesting and sometimes arcane information, including New York State's Constitution, population data for urban and rural counties, public improvement programs, legislative committees, voting statistics, members of the interstate sanitation commission, and much, much more.
This fascinating volume is being packed along with many others as we prepare for our move to the new Tompkins Center for History and Culture.
Rod Howe |
Executive Director | Director@TheHistoryCenter.net | Phone: x 222
Julia Taylor |
Educator, Eight Square Schoolhouse | EightSquare@TheHistoryCenter.net | Phone: x 229
Ksenia Ionova |
Community Outreach & Visitor Services | Community@TheHistoryCenter.net | Phone: x 227
Bookkeeper & Office Manager
| Admin@TheHistoryCenter.net | Phone: x 225
Cindy Kjellander-Cantu |
Design & Support Specialist | Design@TheHistoryCenter.net | Phone: x 223
STAY CONNECTED @TompkinsHistory