Fenton History Center
Our Mission is to provide educational and cultural opportunities for the residents of Chautauqua County and its visitors through the collection, preservation and exhibition of artifacts and archival materials pertaining to Jamestown and Chautauqua County, New York.
Reuben E. Fenton was Governor of New York State from 1865 to 1869. He also served in the US Congress (1853-1864) and US Senate (1869-1875). As one of the founders of the Republican Party, he was a close political associate of Abraham Lincoln.
Governor Fenton, who made his fortune in the lumbering business, commissioned local architect Aaron Hall to design and build a mansion in 1863. A typical example of Italian Villa style architecture, the Fenton Mansion was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1972. The Fenton Mansion has served as headquarters for the local history center since 1964.
The Fenton History Center is a community resource for people of all ages from the pre-school child just learning to read to the senior citizen who still finds something new to learn each day. The resources (collection, library/archives and educational resources) and services (exhibits, research assistance and educational programming) found at the FHC are tied to community interests and reflect what the community cares about. The FHC will continue to develop innovative methods of meeting community interests and priorities- such as the Junior Historians, History Club, Adult History Club and Genealogy Support Group - while continuing to serve as an educational resource for children and adults, a place for families to enjoy together, and a part of the community's heritage.
Your donations help:
For continuing the preservation of artifacts and the history of Jamestown, NY and Chautauqua County as well as continuing our education programs to teach the local schools and residents about our history.
There are many ways you can get involved.
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