CNY Living History Center

Posted by  //  September 29, 2017  //  Local Business

While you’re out this fall enjoying the scenery, make sure you stop by the CNY Living History Center!  Stop in for a walk through any one of our three museums on site.  Each artifact has a story and history all its own, and there are so many to see that you just might miss some!

Our Homeville side boasts a huge collection of over 10,000 historical artifacts, mostly related to military history.  However there are certain displays that showcase local history and Cortland County has no shortage of history to offer.  As you walk around the outside of the Homeville exhibits you will come across a glass case with some trophies displayed on top and an old Braves jersey hanging to the left.  Well, back on May 9, 1939 Homer would receive a semi-pro baseball team with the formation of the Homer Braves in the Southern Tier League.  Famous players such as Hank Aaron and Willie Mays came through Homer at one point to play!  In our Homeville collection, you can find a game used bat from Hank Aaron on display along with a ball signed by the man who scouted him for the MLB, Dewey Griggs.

Our Brockway side features a rotating collection of Brockway Trucks.  Brockway Trucks would be manufactured in Cortland from 1912 until 1977.  But before George Brockway started to make motor trucks in 1912, his father, William Brockway, was laying the groundwork by building carriages and surreys.  Upstairs on the Brockway side, you will find three Brockway carriages.  But what most people don’t know is that the original carriage works still stands to this day.  If you take a right out of our parking lot and drive towards Homer, on the right you’d come across a red building with a sign above that reads, “UNROOM.”  That is what remains of the original Brockway carriage works from the late 19th century!  You can now see a new Brockway surrey on display in our lobby that was made back in 1895!

Our Tractors of Yesteryears, or TOYS, Barn houses the agricultural history collection as well as a smaller component we like to call, “Grandma’s Kitchen.”  Grandma’s Kitchen rotates out its exhibits just like the rest of the museums and this year’s theme is antique barns and dollhouses.  One of the dollhouses can be seen that was hand-made out of old shipping crates.  It may not look like much to the, but that shipping crate dollhouse has a story.  The crates and materials used to build it date back to the early 1920s during the Great Depression.  During the Great Depression, families struggled to put food on their plates let alone provide toys for their children, and this hand-made doll house serves as a reminder to a time when things as simple as a child’s toy weren’t take for granted.

The CNY Living History Center is open Tuesday through Saturday from 10am to 5pm and all three museums are included in the admission price!  The Center is located at 4386 US Route 11 in Cortland.  Come and enjoy a walk through history with us this fall!

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