The Conneaut Lake Area Historical Society Museum is located at 150 N. Third St., Conneaut Lake, Pa., 16316.
It is located in the former community hall and includes hundreds of exhibits in the main room as well as a lobby with exhibits featuring our ice house industry and agricultural industry.
In the garage is The Liberty the Second, a speed boat which sank in Conneaut Lake in the 1920s and was recovered more than 60 years later and restored. It has an airplane engine – one of only a few in the country. One is located at the Wright Air Force Base in Dayton, Ohio; and one in the Smithsonian Institute in Washington. Both reportedly no longer run, but the one on Liberty the Second does run. (A history of the boat itself is on another link).
Inside the main lobby are exhibits featuring our unique history, including a 1940s kitchen, the Feeder Canal, schools, sports, boats, Conneaut Lake Park, military photographs, fire department memorabilia as well as scouting and other special exhibits – such as a hotel exhibit showing how many hotels we once had in our small area.
All are designed to tell our rich history.
Also featured are pictures of famous celebrities who either visited here, worked here or lived here and went onto become rich and famous. They include such people as Perry Como, Doris Day, world heavyweight champions Max Schmeling and Max Baer as well as visitors Mark Twain, Gov. Tom Ridge, President William McKinley and James Garfield and Nashville song writers Bill Luther and Luke Laird, both of whom have written Number One hits for such stars as Tim McGraw and Carrie Underwood, respectively.
In the office, we have a research center, which includes a microfilm and printer of the Conneaut Lake Breeze from the 1920s to which the weekly newspaper closed in the 1980s. The printer allows copies of the paper to be made on site.
The center also has dozens of notebooks containing various paper items, including deeds, newspaper clippings and photographs as well as other such things for a wide range of topics. Included are: Cemeteries, boats, schools, churches, Conneaut Lake Park, Fairyland Forest, townships and borough business, local businesses, organization activities and sports – to name but a few.
Also are included some personal family histories as well as personality profiles of many of our citizens – to allow the researcher a glimpse into the lives of some of our citizens.
Our center also includes city directories and other types of books which can be used to trace history of the area or for genealogy purposes.
We have handicapped accessible entrances as well as restrooms and ample parking.
The second floor is not handicapped accessible, but is used for storage of various items that are not on display, but in storage for future exhibits.
Our rich history is told in pictures painted on a mural on the outside of the building. It depicts our history from the days of the native Americans to today. Painted by member Nancy Helmreich, the mural has deep rich colors and is a beautiful tribute to our town and our ancestors. For more on the mural, click here.
We attempt to change our exhibits from time to time to allow more of our history to be shared and are open to suggestions for possible exhibits. Occasionally, we have exhibits on display for a brief period of time as well.
Our museum hours are 2 p.m. to 5 p.m., Saturday and Sunday. However, special appointments may be made by calling George Rutherford at 814-382-7761.
Admission to the museum is free of charge. However, donations are accepted.
Phone number is: 814-382-6894
Coming east from Meadville: Take Route 322 to Conneaut Lake to Third Street, turn right and we are one-half block from the light on the right.
Coming west: Take Route 322 to Conneaut Lake to Third Street, turn left, and we are one-half block from the light on the right.
Coming from the south: Take Route 285 into Conneaut Lake and you will be on Third Street. Proceed past Sheetz (on the left) and go through the red light and the museum is one-half block from the light on the right.
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