The Blair County Historical Society (BCHS) was chartered on July 23, 1906 as a non-profit association open to all persons interested in preserving the history of Blair County. Since its inception, the society has taken an active role in preserving and interpreting this region’s heritage, through marking sites of historical significance, publishing books and pamphlets on local history, and collecting and preserving artifacts relevant to the heritage of the area’s people.
The Blair History Center
- For over a century, the Blair County Historical Society at Baker Mansion has conveyed regional history and the story of the Elias Baker Family. Settling in the area in 1836, the Bakers became a very affluent family thanks to their rising dominance in iron-making during this time of rapid industrialization. Theirs is a story of ambition, perseverance, wealth, and power–all topics that retain great influence in our modern society. As long as Baker Mansion rests in the hands of our organization, their story will always remain a highlight of our museum narrative. At the same time, the Blair County Historical Society is equally dedicated in conveying a story broader and even more dramatic than that of a single family. The epic saga of Blair County, Pennsylvania is the tale of everyday people like you who were profoundly shaped by the powerful forces of community, nature, war, business, family, hate, and love. From Tyrone to Claysburg, local and national history was made by seemingly ordinary farmers, railroaders, doctors, lawyers, and teachers. The Blair County History Center at Baker Mansion seeks to interpret these common but extraordinary elements of our society through special events as well as exciting and thematic museum displays. The story of Blair County is the story of America itself. Come visit us and discover how.
- The Blair County Historical Society holds a collection approaching 100,000 artifacts. The major period covered is 1850 through the present. Nearly all pieces have been acquired through the donations of local residents. The collection includes a wide variety of items depicting everyday life ranging from sports memorabilia, industrial tools, militaria, and historic furnishings. The downstairs of the mansion is largely decorated as it was when the Baker Family resided there in the 19th century. Meanwhile, the upstairs features topical exhibit galleries focussing on key people, places, events, and universal themes of Blair County life throughout the ages.