As Western New York approaches Phase 4 of the Reopening New York plan, the Fenton History Center has been busily preparing to reopen our doors to the public for the first time since mid-March. The staff has meticulously looked over the four floors of the Fenton Mansion, and has adjusted our space and exhibits to ensure that any visitors coming to the Museum will have a safe, educational, and enjoyable experience. As soon as we are cleared to do so, we will be welcoming visitors back for our regular hours, Monday – Saturday, 10 – 4. Any visitors stopping by will be required to wear a mask or facial covering, wash or sanitize their hands immediately upon entering, and stay socially distant from anyone not in their group. The Hall House Research Center will not open immediately, but is tentatively scheduled to open the week of July 13th. In the meantime, we will continue to take research requests by email (firstname.lastname@example.org), by phone (716-664-6256), or through the mail (67 Washington St).
Along with our reopening, the Fenton History Center was also pleased recently to kick-off our collection drive for historic or current materials devoted to the local LGBTQIA+ community. Through the generous support of the New York State Council on the Arts (NYSCA) and the Greater Hudson Heritage Network (GHHN), and through a wonderful partnership with Jamestown Pride, the Fenton has been given the opportunity to begin addressing some of the gaps in our archive of Jamestown’s history. Though we are always accepting donations, any which are related to local LGBTQIA+ history that come in between now and the end of the year will be used to help construct an exhibit celebrating the community that will go up at the Fenton in early 2021. We are looking to create an exhibit that feels representative of the local LGBTQIA+ community, and so will be accepting a wide variety of content, including written narratives, photographs, poetry, artistic works, protest signs, publications, audiovisual materials, physical objects, and more; we only ask that items to be considered for display be family-friendly and have a personal or societal connection to the local LGBTQIA+ community.