Historical Society – Update

A meeting was held by the Rochester Historical Society on Sept. 26th and a vote was taken on the plan to sell their home on East Avenue, called “Woodside.” Most of the votes were proxy votes done via mail. The vote was 301 in favor of the sale and only 13 votes against the sale. So the sale will go through.

Not all the signatures have been done, as of yet, but plans are to move most of the collection in Woodside to the second floor of the Rundel Building of the Rochester Public Library. They will be at the north end of that floor with the Local History and Genealogy Section of the library at the south end. This will be better for the collection as it is air conditioned and climate controlled where as Woodside is not. It is not clear of a time table for the move but the target is first or second quarter of 2009.

Rumors are that some minor collections may be sold but they are items not related to area history.

Woodside is of very historic value and should be maintained as best as possible. Over the years, it has been a financial drain on the Society to try to maintain it.

In the long run, the Historical Society collection will probably be more accessible to the public and in a home that it better to maintain the collection.

One Comment

  1. It’s the documents in the Historical Society’s collection that are of special interest to genealogists. Without a doubt the documents would be better maintained in the library. (At Woodside documents are stored in the basement under terrible conditions). But I wonder whether the public will end up having greater access to the documents. That hinges on whether the Historical Society takes steps to a)organize, catalog and index the documents after they’re moved and b)allow researchers including genealogists to use them during library hours. Given its financial straits, I doubt the Society itself will have sufficient staff anytime soon to accomplish these things. So I hope the Society will involve volunteers and library staff in this effort. Time will tell.

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