Western Reserve Historical Society, Cleveland

#9 of 16 in Museums in Cleveland
The Western Reserve Historical Society was founded in 1867, making it the oldest cultural institution in Northeast Ohio. WRHS is located in Cleveland, Ohio, USA, and is focused on the history of the Western Reserve. WRHS celebrates its 150th anniversary in 2017.AboutLocated in University Circle, an arts and culture district of Cleveland, the Society houses and curates collections of cultural artifacts and documents from various people. The mission of the Western Reserve Historical Society is "to inspire people to discover the American experience by exploring the tangible history of Northeast Ohio." This is accomplished by collecting, preserving and presenting the history of all the people of the Western Reserve. WRHS is a private, membership-based society that also receives funding through investments, grants, and gifts.The Western Reserve & Northern Ohio Historical Society formed in 1867, initially as a branch of the Cleveland Library Association. Its first president was Charles Whittlesey, "a geologist and historian". "Originally, the society was located on the third floor of the Society for Savings Bank in downtown Cleveland." The institution first opened to the public in 1871 and purchased the entire bank building in 1892 due to the increasing size of the collections. From 1898 until 1938 the society resided at E. 107th St. and Euclid Avenue. WRHS moved to its present location in the late 1930s.History"Founded in May 1867, the Western Reserve Historical Society is Cleveland’s oldest existing cultural institution. It was established as the historical branch of the Cleveland Library Association which dated from 1848. The Society’s creation was part of an important trend in the United States, the establishment of private organizations to oversee the collection and preservation of documents and objects relating to various aspects of national, regional and local history. While its original focus was on the history of “…Cleveland and the Western Reserve, and generally what relates to the history of Ohio and the Great West,” it now concentrates on the history of Northeast Ohio."
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Western Reserve Historical Society Reviews
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111 reviews
  • Visited with grands. In addition the the many interesting historical artifacts, there is a wonderful carousel suitable for 3+ year olds.  more »
  • This is one of the places we love to go and visit often. They just have some nice displays and the children like it also.  more »
  • My husband and I decided to stay in town for our week off work. So glad we did. The western Reserve Historical Society has so much to offer. The Crawford Automobile Museum was fantastic. It was so int...  more »
  • Great museum for local history. Lots of cars. Also has the Euclid beach carousel and able to ride on it. Also attached is a early 1900's house to tour.
  • What an unknown gem of a museum! The fact it is made from two historic houses and has an indoor carousel sets it apart from any other museums across the country. They have interesting features for children up to older adults. The working carousel is handicap accessible and the day we were there a group of people boarded on their wheelchairs to enjoy multiple rides. It warmed our hearts. We will bring our tour groups back for a visit.
  • Had our company Christmas party here ... cool place with lots to see and do.
  • History buffs for Cleveland's mansion-era including Hay-McKinney mansion (attached to the museum). Also includes the Crawford car collection and the historical restored Euclid Beach Carousel. They should have a separate entrance if you just want to ride the carousel, though.
  • Great staff and clean environment. I will be back.
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