The Westmoreland History Education Center
The Westmoreland Historical Society Education Center ,located at Historic Hanna’s Town is the newest building on the property. After years of trying to finish this project, it was finally completed in 2019. The Education Center is used to interpret and preserve history from everywhere in Westmoreland County. The Education Center includes a gift shop, library, gallery display, archival collection, and ticket office for tours.
Backstory and Context
The Education Center is one of the most versatile buildings at Historic Hanna’s Town. The Westmoreland Historical Society operates out of the Education Center and runs the archival collection, library, conference rooms, museum’s gallery, and gift shop. The Edward H. Hahn Archival Collection houses photographs, documents, and archaeological artifacts that document the history of Westmoreland County. The Calvin E. Pollins Memorial Library has over 5,000 different books ranging in different topics. The library also offers assistance with research and genealogical inquiries. The Kendra Gallery is a changing exhibit which has included displays of furniture, clothing, and archaeological artifacts. Currently, the gallery displays a woodworking exhibit.
The Historical Society has been involved in preserving Hanna’s Town since the 1960’s, and preserving Westmoreland County’s history since 1908. Construction of the Education Center began in 2018 and finished in 2019. With the construction of the Education Center, it was the final push to make Historic Hanna’s Town home to the Historical Society. Lisa Hays, the Executive Director of the Historical Society said, “You can immerse yourself. It feels right,” when describing the move to Historic Hanna’s Town. Hanna’s Town was the birthplace of Westmoreland County, so moving the historical society to Historic Hanna’s Town made sense. The move to Historic Hanna’s Town is a culmination of years of work that was finally completed in 2019.
The design of the Education Center was made to replicate a barn that was located on the property when the Steel family owned the land. The colors and design of the Education Center also compliment the Steel House which is located next to the Education Center.
McMarlin, Shriley . Out & About: Westmoreland Historical Society christens new education center, Trib Live. November 18th 2019. Accessed June 19th 2020. https://triblive.com/lifestyles/outandabout/out-about-historical-society-christens-new-education-center/.
Napsha, Joe. Westmoreland County Historical Society breaks ground on project at Hanna’s Town, Trib Live. January 28th 2018. Accessed June 18th 2020. https://archive.triblive.com/local/westmoreland/westmoreland-county-historical-society-breaks-ground-on-project-at-hannas-town/.
Westmoreland County Historical Society. 2020. “Hanna’s Town Tour Manual”. Westmoreland County Historical Society.