Skip to main content

Historically Lewis

Home of the Lewis County Historical Society

Frequently Asked Questions

COVID Pandemic Restrictions?

The health of our community and our visitors is important to us. In light of the ongoing pandemic, we have been operating a bit differently than we have in the past. While we accept the occasional walk-in visitor, we prefer to have people contact us first to make appointments. Our staff are all vaccinated and wear masks when visitors are at the Temple. We require all visitors to the Temple to wear masks that we deem suitable while they are there, and we strongly prefer that all visitors be fully vaccinated. We may require stronger (or less strong) restrictions as circumstances change during the course of the pandemic, for special events or otherwise as we see fit. And we reserve the right to require anyone to leave our facilities for failure to comply with these restrictions or as we deem appropriate. Your health and our health and the health of our community is something we take very seriously.

Can my group use either the Temple or the Greystone facilities?

Possibly. From time to time, the Lewis County Historical Society lends out portions of The Temple for events to approved community groups and others. Jump over here for information about that.

At this point we do not allow groups to use Greystone because it is currently in the midst of renovation. But someday we hope to!

What is the difference between the Temple, Greystone and the Historical Society?

The Temple is the former Lowville Masonic Temple, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and houses the headquarters of the Lewis County Historical Society. Greystone is the General Walter Martin House in Martinsburg, which is also on the National Register, is owned by the Lewis County Historical Society and is in the process of a multi-year restoration being overseen by the Historical Society.

Does the Temple have a parking lot?

Yes. The Temple has a private parking lot directly behind our Temple building, with additional public parking available right next door at the Lowville public parking lot. We also have a handicap accessible parking space right in front of the entrance to the Temple.

Is the Temple wheelchair accessible?

The main entrance to the Temple, the large Blue Room and select exhibit space are handicap accessible. The Temple has one handicap accessible bathroom.

Does the Historical Society offer special group tours for visitors?

Sometimes. The Historical Society does occasionally offer group tours of the Temple and of Greystone that can be scheduled separate from normal hours of operation.

How do I arrange a visit or group tour for a school group or group of adults?

If you would like to speak with us about a group tour, please call the Historical Society at 315-376-8957.

Are the Historical Society, the Temple and Greystone a private or public institution?

The Lewis County Historical Society is a private, non-profit educational institution. It operates the Temple, the Research Center and Greystone for the benefit of the community.

Is photography or videography permitted inside the Temple or at Greystone?

Yes, photography and videography are allowed, but not for commercial use or publication without the express consent of the Lewis County Historical Society.

What is meant by the term “collections”?

Collections are the physical evidence, the archival and artifactual material or the “stuff,” so to speak, that is of historical significance and interest about our county. Our collections include documents, objects, structures, buildings, manuscripts, library materials, maps, photographs and works of the fine arts (i.e., paintings and drawings, mosaics, printmaking, calligraphy, photography, film, videography, sculpture, architecture, pottery, conceptual art, poetry, music, dance, theater, and literary, musical or scientific writings) and the art crafts (including crafts involving textiles, wood, metal, clay, paper, canvas or other materials), which record, inform and support the study/research of Lewis County’s history.

Can I volunteer at the Temple or at Greystone?

Absolutely! We welcome volunteers and offer a variety of volunteer opportunities depending on the interest of the volunteer. They include such things as serving on a committee, helping out with programs, working on the restoration of Greystone, helping with accessioning for our collections, serving as a tour guide or docent, helping us write grants, and working behind the scenes. If you are interested in volunteering, please complete a Volunteer Application.

How do I become a member of the Historical Society?

Becoming a member is easy. Simply fill out Our Membership Application. Becoming a member is easy. Simply fill out Our Membership Application.

What are the benefits of becoming a member of the Historical Society?

The benefits of becoming a member include a subscription to the Society’s highly-regarded Journal, a 10% discount on the many books, publications and gifts available at the Society’s bookstore, free or discounted admission to the Society’s exhibit gallery and many of the programs and activities always taking place at the Temple, invitations to the Society’s special member-only events, email notifications to the many programs and activities taking place at the Society, free use of our Research Center, full voting privileges, rewarding opportunities to volunteer your time and talents on projects, and special opportunities to share your collections and historical interest with others.

I have questions about my family history that might be connected to Lewis County. How can the Historical Society help me and where do I begin?

The first step in genealogical research pertaining to Lewis County would be to contact Cole Mullin, the Office Manager of the Historical Society. Call him at 315-376-8957 or email him.

I want to know how much my antique or historic object/book/artwork is worth, can you tell me?

We’re sorry, but we do not offer appraisals.

Is there online access to any of the Historical Society’s collections?

No, not at this point, but we hope to begin to make some of our collections available online in the future.

Can I donate online?

Yes, LCHS is set up to accept electronic donations by PayPal.