Benton County Historical Museum
The Benton County Historical Museum houses over 66,000 artifacts that chronicle the history of Benton County, Oregon. The museum building itself is a piece of history; built in 1867, it was once the Philomath College. The citizens of the city saved the historic building from demolition in 1951 and in 1980 it opened as a museum, library, and art gallery. Admission is free, but access to the research library portion of the museum is by appointment only. The Benton County Historical Museum artifact collection comprises approximately 66,000 items that illustrate the diverse themes of our Benton County, Oregon heritage. This extensive collection of Benton County related history materials includes 22,000 objects, maps, books, and documents, and approximately 44,000 images. Areas of collecting are based on local themes ranging from logging to technology to the arts, as well as specific topics such as Camp Adair, a World War II Military cantonment, and Philomath College, a United Brethren College that now houses the Museum.
Backstory and Context
The museum features exhibitions of art, historical artifacts, photographs, educational programs, lectures, and visiting collections. A wide variety of topics can be explored at the Benton County Historical Museum, some of which include rural life in Oregon, domestic arts such as clothing and textile, traveling exhibits about art, flight, sound, writing, and more.2