Current Events







See What's Going On At The Herkimer County Historical Society!

We will be CLOSED on Friday, April 18 for Good Friday.




Our Annual Dinner Meeting will be held at PK's Pub, 221King Street, Herkimer on May 20 at 6:00 p.m. We will be honoring three board members who will be leaving the Board. Garry Outtrim and Steve Knight have served on the Board since 2008 and are rotating off after 6 years of service. Steve volunteers twice a week in ourlibrary answering genealogy letters and assisting researchers. Garry has participated in our Celebrity Server Breakfast and given valuable advice on improving fundraising events. Barbara Voelkle has served on the Board since 2010 and will be stepping down this year. She will continue to serve on our Fund Raising Committee.

We will have a brief business meeting after our dinner and elect four new members to our Board: Kyle Crandall, Herkimer attorney, Kathy Huxtable, longtime member and new volunteer, John Scarano, executive director of the Herkimer County Chamber of Commerce, and Penny Van Duesen, Frankfort school teacher.

The Dinner Selections Include: Stuffed Shells (served with salad and warm bread) - $18.00 * Grilled Chicken Platter (Seasoned breast served with rice and vegetables - $20.00 * Haddock Oreganata (Haddock filet topped with tomatoes and oreganata breadcrumb mix and broiled. Finished with a lemon-wine sauce - $20.00. To sign up for the Annual Dinner Meeting, please mail us a check with your dinner selection to: Herkimer County Historical Society, 400 N. Main St., Herkimer, NY 13350 by May 16.



Our fourth annual "Celebrity Server Breakfast" will be held on Friday, June 20, from 7:30-9:30 a.m. at the Knights Inn in Little Falls. We have already come up with a nickname for the event - "Friday Feeding Frenzy." Try saying that five times fast - or just once. You can come and start your day with a delicious breakfast and be waited on by your favorite celebrity and help support the Herkimer County Historical Society!

Last year's event was a lot of fun with Gary Hartman earning the title of "Most Appreciated Server" by raising the most tip donations. John Scarano entertained all of us once again with his costume choice of Benjamin Franklin, earning him the "Best Costume" award that morning. We look forward to this year's Breakfast and hope you mark the date on your calendar to come support our event.

Our Celebrity Servers signed up for this year's Breakfast:Legislator Kurt Ackerman, Herkimer Mayor Dr. Mark Ainsworth, Herkimer attorney George Aney, Canal Side Inn proprietor James Aufmuth, Legislature Chairman Vincent Bono, New York State Assemblyman Marc Butler, Attorney Bart Carrig, Attorney Joseph Cirillo, Boy Scout Executive Michael Donaghue, Funeral director and coroner Harry Enea, 2013 Most Appreciated Celebrity Server Gary Hartman, Legislator Raymond Johnson, Little Falls Adirondack Bank Manager Jennifer Lamphere, Legislator Martin Luppino, Jr., Dolgeville Mayor Bruce Lyon, Mohawk Valley Center for the Arts director Kevin Mihaly, WKTV General Manager Steve McMurray, Kwik-Kut Manufacturing Co. owner Mary Morse, Herkimer Attorney Garry Outtrim, Herkimer County Chamber of Commerce executive director John Scarano, Legislator Robert Schrader, Bug Country Radio's Dave Silvers, Herkimer Citizens Bank Manager Tammy Smith, Legislator John Stephens, New York State Assemblywoman Claudia Tenney, and Legislator Robert Wellington.


Come join us for an entertaining evening, which it is sure to be with our lineup of roasters: John Scarano, Roastmaster Extraordinaire, Attorney George Aney, New York State Assemblyman Marc Butler, Funeral Director Ron Hess, Retired Madison County Clerk Ken Kunkel, and Sylvia's daughter Christine Hudson.



Thursday, April 24 @ 7:00 p.m. - "You Stand Alone...Fight Like Hell: The 97th New York at Gettysburg" by Cheryl Pula.
One of our favorite presenters, Cheryl Pula will be talking about the 97th New York Volunteers, who were instrumental in the Battle at Gettysburg. Also known as the "Conkling Rifles," this regiment was organized at Boonville and recruited principally from the counties of Oneida and Herkimer. Company D and F was recruited at Salisbury; G in Herkimer County; I at Little Falls. By the end of the war, the troop was mustered out of service under Col. John P. Spofford, a Manheim native. And what exciting stories he had to tell!


Thursday, May 22 @ 7:00 p.m. - "The Battle of Oriskany and General Nicholas Herkimer" by Paul Boehlert.
Mohawk Valley native Paul Boehlert will present a program on his new book that talks about Gen. Nicholas Herkimer's citizen-soldiers turning back the British and protecting Washington's northern flank from attack at the Battle of Oriskany in August 1777. His book is available for sale in our Gift Shop for $19.99.


Tuesday, June 17 @ 7:00 p.m. - "Off The Beaten Path - The Catskill 200's" by Alan Via.
You have heard of the "Adirondack 46ers" and the "Catskill 3500 Club" (if you haven't, they are people who have climbed the 46 Adirondack High Peaks and the 35 Catskill Mountains over 3500 feet), but have you heard of the "Catskill 200's"? These are the lesser known peaks in the Catskill Mountain region that a few energetic souls have attempted to climb, including Alan Via. He will present a debut program on these peaks of the Catskill Mountains. The presentation includes gorgeous scenery, the animals and flora, porcupines, fishers, and bears (oh, my!). The photos featured are from photographers who enjoy hiking these little traveled peaks, including Jim Hopson of Dolgeville, who is a friend of Alan's and has accompanied him on some of his hikes. Alan has been a member of the Albany Chapter of the Adirondack Mt. Club since the 70's. He is an Adirondack 46er, winter 46er, 3500 Club and winter 35er, Northeast 111, ADK 100 highest and Catskill 100 highest. Alan has been a trip leader for 35 years and has led trips for Catskill 3500 Club, Adirondack Mt. Club, Catskill Mountain Club, Appalachian Mt. Club, and Taconic Hiking Club. If you would like to take a jaunt into the Catskills, he is the man to talk to! Alan is the author of the guidebook "The Catskill 67," a full color hiking guide published by the Adirondack Mt. Club in 2012. Copies of his book will be available for sale that evening. Pictured is Alan with his beloved hiking companion Bookah.


Thursday, July 17 @ 6:30 p.m. - "Hidden History of the Mohawk Valley" by Bob Cudmore.
Bob Cudmore is best known as the morning radio show host on Lite 104.7 and 1570 AM WVTL in Amsterdam, N.Y. and a weekly contributor for his feature "Focus on History" in the Daily Gazette. Cudmore is also an author and his latest book "Hidden History of the Mohawk Valley" will be the subject for his program. Much of the history of New York's scenic Mohawk Valley has been recounted time and again. But so many other stories have remained buried, like the man called the Baseball Oracle from Rome, NY who correctly predicted the outcome of the St. Louis Cardinals twenty-one baseball games or that movie star Kirk Douglas was a counselor at Camp Agaming in the Adirondacks. Come here about the interesting tales of the area that you never knew before! Bob will have his books available for sale that evening, including his 2011 bok "Stories from the Mohawk Valley."
Bob's new book "Hidden History of the Mohawk Valley" is available for sale in our Gift Shop for $19.99 (open Monday-Friday, 10 a.m.-4 p.m., located in our Eckler Bldg, 406 N. Main St., Herkimer).


Thursday, August 28 @ 6:00 p.m. - "Cemetery Walking Tour of the Salisbury Rural Cemetery" by Susan Perkins
Join us for this year's Cemetery Walking Tour in the Town of Salisbury. We will be touring the Salisbury Rural Cemetery, located on Route 29, and will have people meet us at the cemetery right before the tour begins. What better way to discover more about the history of a community than to traverse its cemetery and learn more about the people who made their home there, in Salisbury, that is. One monument that stands out in the cemetery is the Yale Memorial given by William T. Yale. It features a rectangular granite stone with nine small bronze reliefs mounted on three sides of the stone. These represent the professions in which various members of the Yale family were involved. First and foremost is the Inventor, representing Linus Yale, inventor of the Yale lock and key.

Tuesday, September 17 @ 7:00 p.m.- "Occupation: Adirondack Hermit" by Roy Reehil
A return presenter, Roy will present a funny and inspiring peak into the world of eccentric Adirondack hermits of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Employing the common traits of ingenuity, woodcraft, marksmanship, fishing skill and good humor, French Louie, Noah John Rondeau and Old Lobb of Piseco Lake combated the hardships of living alone in the Adirondack wilderness. A question and answer session will follow after which Roy will be available to sign his book "Adirondack Adventures: Bog Gillespie and Harvey Dunham on French Louie's Trail," also available in our Gift Shop.

Thursday, October 16 @ 7:00 p.m. - "Haunted Mohawk Valley" by Dennis Webster and Ghost Seekers of Central New York
Local author Dennis Webster ("Wicked Mohawk Valley" and "Wicked Adirondacks") has teamed up with the paranormal investigative group Ghost Seekers of Central New York to write this book based on the Ghost Seekers' investigations in the local area, including sites such as the old Herkimer County Courthouse, the 1834 Herkimer County Jail, Beardslee Castle, the Oriskany Battlefield, and Erie Canal Village. Come listen as they uncover the mysteries behind these and many other haunted places of the Mohawk Valley. Their book "Haunted Mohawk Valley" is available for sale in our Gift Shop for $19.99.


Our programs are free and open to the public. They are held in our Eckler Building, 406 N. Main St., Herkimer, NY, unless otherwise noted.


Our Suiter Building museum is open to the public throughout the year, Monday-Friday, 10:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m. and during July and August (starting the second Saturday in July) on Saturdays, 10:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m.

Come learn about Herkimer County's history as you tour the two floors of our 1884 Victorian Suiter Museum building. When you arrive at our facility, please come to our office building located right next door at 406 N. Main Street first.


Our temporary exhibit room this year will be dedicated to the Military Uniforms that we have in our collection. Summer employee Ben Stovall has been hard at work putting the exhibit together - it is one of his passions and he has done an excellent job selecting the items on display and researching them. The display should be open by the beginning of August.

The exhibit is open 10:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. and can be seen in our Suiter Museum building. Please come to the Eckler Building first at 406 N. Main St. where we have our offices.


Fun For Everyone! Our Joyce Keller Doll House and Miniature Collection is now housed on the second floor of our museum. It was previously located in the old 1834 Jail when it was donated to the Historical Society in 1985. The collection features 7 houses and 20 room settings, created by Herkimer resident Joyce Keller. It is a popular attraction that can be enjoyed by everyone of all ages!




One hundred years ago, another shocking murder in Herkimer County made national headlines - a teenage youth was charged with the murder of his school teacher in the village of Poland. His name was Jean Gianini and he was acquitted of the murder of Lida Beecher on the defense of imbecility. He would spend his life in confinement at state institutions until his death at the age of 90 in the year 1988. Here is the true account of what happened. $18.00

"STRIKE STORY" BY Angela Harris
Strike Story is a retelling of events leading up to and during the Little Falls Textile Strike of 1912. Presented as readers' theatre, the play relies on the words of people involved as well as the published accounts of the events from contemporary newspapers and material from government documents. The play dramatizes the impact of the tuberculosis crisis in Little Falls, the role of the Triangle Shirtwaist Fire on mills throughout New York State, and the day-by-day events of the strike with focus on the free speech fight and the riot of October 30, 1912. $10.00

Our fourth Arcadia Publishing book, "Frankfort," features over 200 photographs of the town and village of Frankfort with captions of historical detail for each one. The book includes the following chapters: Notable People, Community, Churches, Schools, Business and Industry, and Transportation. It joins our previous publications, all available for sale - Valley Towns, Herkimer Village, German Flatts, and Little Falls. $21.99

Co-authors Alan E. Sterling and Nancy Cioch have written this new account of Revolutionary War hero General Nicholas Herkimer, the most ambitious account of his life story ever attempted. Little was recorded about Nicholas' early life, but from his mid 20's on to his heroic death at age 49, a reasonably detailed account of his land acquisitions, military service and social and family interactions can be pieced together. Al and Nancy worked together at the Herkimer Home State Historic Site and are the ideal people to collaborate on this wonderful book. $19.95

This excellent new history on the village of Frankfort is a wonderful book for anyone who would like to know more about this community, celebrating 150 years this year. Bill Schuster, retired from Union Fork and Hoe Company as its plant and chief engineer, began to look into the company's history and discovered so many more interesting facts and events in Frankfort, that it turned into a history of the village. 334 pages. $17.50.



To see a complete listing of our books, please visit our "Gift Shop Page."