Category Archives: News


Seneca Museum in partnership with Canalside Experiences are now offering 90 minute Boat Tours of the Cayuga-Seneca Canal.

This fully narrated tour includes a ride into Locks 2/3, around the beautiful Vancleef Lake. Then past the Seneca Knitting Mill (the future home of the National Women’s Hall of Fame), under Bridge Street bridge (locally called Bailey’s Bridge and said to be the inspiration for the bridge in Frank Capra’s ‘Its A Wonderful Life movie). On pass the Ludovico sculpture Trail and much more.


Monday – Saturday


AFTER JUNE 14th – Monday – Saturday

11:00am & 1:00pm

For bookings and information contact:

Seneca Museum, 315.568.1510

Book your tour today.


A Blooming Wonder

A Blooming Wonder

For the 4th consecutive year Denise and James Brakefield have made the entrance pot of the museum a blooming wonder. Not only did they kindly purchase a range of beautiful flowers and then donate them to the museum but in the early, early hours (whilst out walking with the dog, with trowel and plants in hand)Denise planted them all for us to admire.
Thank you so much for your continued support, care and donation.

Concluded: Friday May 26th – Steppin’ Out String Band – Music of the Canal

Seneca Museum of Waterways & Industry and the Women’s Rights National Historical Park

Present A Musical Performance by

Continuing the Seneca Museum and the Women’s National Historical Park 2017 Partnership our next program is being presented in the Historic Wesleyan Chapel at the Women’s Rights National Historical Park. 136 Fall Street. Steppin’ Out String Band — Four dynamic and talented women have joined forces to form this high energy band.  Combining folk songs and ballads with beautiful close vocal harmonies, lively and fun traditional dance tunes, Steppin’ Out String Band is a favorite with audiences of all ages. Specializing in American folk music, the group introduces songs and music with instruments including the button accordion, hammered dulcimer, guitar, lap dulcimer, banjo, mandolin, wooden flute, whistle, bass, ukulele and percussion instruments including the limberjack, washboard and bongo drum.

Please join us on Friday evening –  May 26th –  2017  at 6:45 p.m. at the Wesleyan Chapel, 136 Fall Street

This program is FREE and open to the public. For more information about this program please call us at (315)568-1510. Or visit

‘Women Attorney TrailBlazers of New York’ Display

The Seneca Museum, in partnership with the Seneca Falls Historical Society, is excited to announce the arrival of the ‘Women Attorney Trailblazers of New York’ travelling display from the New York State Bar Association’s .

Maureen Bezuhly Co-chair, Committee on Women in the Law  stated “New York State has a rich history of amazing trailblazing women attorneys who broke through barriers and blatant discrimination  to make major contributions in the legal profession. Their stories are ones of fierce determination, passion for the law, keen  intelligence, and inspiring achievement.

From the late 19th Century, when women began gaining admission to state bars, through the 1960s, women attorneys faced widespread discrimination.  Women were turned away from law firms, or only offered jobs as librarians or secretaries.  Later, women applicants were told that the quota for hiring women was already filled or that clients would be uncomfortable with a woman attorney. ”

The 9′ x 10′ display is located on the fall street level of the Seneca Museum. It will be on display for approx. 2 months before moving on.

Concluded: Friday May 12th – Walt Gable – Women in the Civil War

 On Friday, May 12, 2017, starting at 7:00 pm at the historic WESLEYAN CHAPEL, Seneca County Historian Walter Gable will discuss these different roles of women during the Civil War.

Women played very important roles in the Civil War. Many women served in the war as soldiers even though women were barred from such service. Other women provided important assistance to soldiers as nurses, camp laundresses and sutlers. While the men were off fighting, it was the women who ran the farms, managed the children and kept the households together. The effort to secure woman suffrage was placed on hold by Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Susan B. Anthony and other suffragists because winning the war had to take priority. 


Concluded: Friday April 28 – Richard Reisem: Myron Holley the untold story.

Friday April 28 – 7:00pm
Richard Reisem: MYRON HOLLEY

(SPEAKER) – Richard has written fourteen books since retiring from Eastman Kodak Company’s Communications and Public Affairs Division in 1986. They include diverse subjects concerned with history and architecture, including Erie Canal Legacy, Classic Buffalo, and 200 Years of Rochester Architecture and Gardens in collaboration with photographer Andy Olenick.

Tonight Richard will introduce us to MYRON HOLLEY, superintendent of construction of the Erie Canal, reveals the noble heart and remarkable accomplishments of Myron Holley. Reisem tells Myron Holley’s story in the context of the momentous historical events and movements that shaped his life, including the War of 1812, the building of the Erie Canal, and the struggle to abolish slavery. The author crafts a comprehensive portrait of the profound influence that this visionary man exerted, changing the course of history in New York State and indeed the nation. Among Holley’s many achievements, he served as the Superintendent of Construction of the Erie Canal and founded the first Horticultural Society in Western New York, the First Unitarian Church in Rochester, and the anti-slavery Liberty Party. Reisem’s telling of Holley’s remarkable life includes abundant background information about his ancestors and descendants and the historical events of his time. Excerpts from personal letters reveal the man’s heart and intellect.

Admission is FREE and begins at 7:00pm.

So join us at the Women’s Rights National Historical Park WESLEYAN CHAPEL.

Concluded: Friday March 24 – Perry & Caren Cleaveland: Canal Ways

Friday March 24 – 7:00pm
Perry & Caren Cleaveland: Canal Way

Continuing the wonderful partnership, which began in 2016, the Seneca Museum and the Women’s National Historical Park 2016 Partnership our next program is being presented in the Historic Wesleyan Chapel at the Women’s Rights National Historical Park.

Tonight’s performance will highlight a varied and diverse presentation of songs from the 18th century…such as by the patriot Francis Hopkinson, to tunes of the 19th century immortalized up to and beyond the Civil War era; all interspersed with the music infused by the culture of the people involved in the canal ways of our country’s past and present times.

Caren, and her husband Perry, perform locally playing and signing a variety of folk, historical and ethnic pieces utilizing instrumentation including guitar, bass, mandolin, fiddle and open-back banjo. Caren and Perry sing a variety of historical folk and old-time music as performed throughout New York State. They have played on several television and radio programs, as well as for several Art Councils (NYSCA) across New York counties. They thoroughly enjoying sharing their love of music and history with their many and diverse audiences.

Admission is FREE and begins at 7:00pm.

So join us at the Women’s Rights National Historical Park and enjoy an evening of beautiful music in the venerable WESLEYAN CHAPEL.


Partnership continues for 2017

The Seneca Museum of Waterways and Industry is excited to announce the continuation of the wonderful partnership, which began in 2016, with the Women’s National Historical Park.

Once again this year, through the generosity, the commitment to the community and some magic I’m sure, the Museum will be co-partnering several programs at the awe inspiring Wesleyan Chapel. The Park is also providing programming again for the Seneca Museums Summer Camps.

Programs occur on a Friday evening at 7:00pm (usually the 4th Friday of the month) and if you wish to be kept informed about up coming events please sent your email address to and you will receive our eNewsLetters.

Under the parks current restrictions, a huge thank you must go to both Superintendent Ami Ghazala and Ashley Nottingham for making this happen.

CONCLUDED: Walt Gable: Wilhelmus Mynderse – Visionary

Wilhelmus Mynderse – Visionary Seneca Falls Businessman

             On Friday evening at 7:00pm, February 24, 2017, at the Seneca Museum of Waterways and Industry 89 Fall Street, Seneca County Historian Walter Gable will show how Wilhelmus Mynderse is probably the single most important person for the early economic development, and as well as, the settlement and growth of Seneca Falls, NY.

In his 40 years of living in Seneca Falls Wilhelmus Mynderse was the key person in the establishment of early saw mills and grist mills by the Bayard Land Company in what became the village of Seneca Falls. He contributed in other ways to the well-being of the community. These included his holding of various local government positions, including how he became known as “Colonel Mynderse,” and his donation of property for the establishment of schools and churches.

Gable will also share how he personally aided in securing the Thomas Wentworth oil painting of Colonel Wilhelmus Mynderse for permanent display in the formal drawing room of the Seneca Falls Historical Society.

If you want to gain insight into the early years of Mynderse Mills, as the village of Seneca Falls was first known, then this is the program for you.

Program is FREE for all and the museum is handicap accessible.



Ticket to Ride Program for 2017 CLOSED

Erie Canalway Ticket to Ride 

Program Guidelines

Erie Canalway Ticket to Ride offers transportation and educational program funding for schools across New York State. By covering bus and tour fees, the program makes it possible for schools to take advantage of first-rate educational field trips to designated museums and historic sites throughout the Erie Canalway National Heritage Corridor.

The program is designed to:

  1. Reinforce classroom learning about the Erie Canal with hands-on experiences at authentic canal
  2. Provide greater access to New York’s rich historic and cultural sites for rural and urban students from varying environments and demographic
  3. Improve critical thinking skills and recall of information by offering contextualexperiences for classroom content.
  4. Inspire students to consider what their generation might accomplish with the kind of vision, hard work, and spirit of innovation that were hallmarks of canal building in New York
  5. In addition to reflecting the NYS Education Department’s Social Studies Standards, each tour site presents a unique local story that enhances the statewide story of the Erie For example, your students may:
  6. Gain first-hand knowledge about how boats and cargo were weighed (Erie Canal Museum, Syracuse);
  7. See the remains of one of the largest aqueducts from the 1800s (Schoharie Crossing State Historic Site, Fort Hunter);
  8. Experience how boats were built and repaired (Chittenango Landing Canal Boat Museum, Chittenango);
  9. Climb alongside the famous Flight of Five Locks (Erie Canal Discovery Center, Lockport).

Evaluation Requirement: National Park Foundation (NPF) is a generous financial supporter of the 2014/15 Ticket to Ride Program and is working with Applied Research Northwest (ARN) to survey a small number of classes about their Ticket to Ride experience. By participating in this year’s Ticket to Ride program, you agree to participate in the survey, if selected. Detailed information about the evaluation is included at the end of this program guide.

Generous support for Ticket to Ride is provided in part by the Institute of Museum and Library Services, First Niagara Bank Foundation, and the National Park Foundation

Program Details 


  • Any school located within New York State is eligible to participate once per school year, subject to available funding. The program is open to any grade level that includes the Erie Canal as part of the teaching
  • Funding for bus and tour fees is capped at $4,000 per school district, per school Once this threshold is reached, schools within the district will need to wait until the next school year to participate.


  • Funding is available on a first-come, first-served basis until available funds are exhausted.


  • Schools must pre-register with Erie Canalway National Heritage Corridor (ECNHC) at least two weeks prior to your anticipated tour dates. A registration form is attached.


  • The school makes tour arrangements directly with the tour provider. ECNHC does not facilitate any tour booking.
  • Schools must confirm tour dates with provider prior to applying for Erie Canalway Ticket to Ride 


Ø   If your school is not able to take a field trip, or you wish to conduct pre-visit activities with your students, you may choose a distance learning option. Provided by the Albany Institute of History and Art (AIHA), this virtual Erie Canal curriculum guide introduces students to the history of the Erie Canal.

  • Optional: Bring the AIHA to your school district to introduce teachers to the use of the curriculum guide (limited opportunities available).

Ø   Erie Canalway Ticket to Ride covers the costs associated with the AIHA’s pre- visit activities and/or the teacher orientation workshop.


  • ECNHC will pay $5.00 per child directly to the museum once the tour is complete. The museum or historical society should NOT invoice, or otherwise seek to collect a fee from teachers or the school.
  • At the completion of a tour, the museum or historical society will submit an invoice to Erie Invoice must contain: name and address of tour site, name of participating school, tour date, number of students, and total amount of tour fee.

Ø   Turn around on invoices is approximately 30 days.

  • Please note: Teachers, chaperones, bus drivers, and other adults are not eligible for reimbursement of tour


Ø   ECNHC pays for bus mileage and driver.

  • Schedule your bus through your district’s established Charter buses are not eligible for this program.
  • The school must submit an invoice for bus services with its registration. Include school name and tour site, date of tour, total mileage traveled, driver rate, number of buses, and total


For program information, registration and to submit invoices:

Andy Kitzmann Assistant Director

Erie Canalway National Heritage Corridor PO Box 219, Waterford, NY

(518) 237-7000, ext. 201

(518) 237-7640 (FAX)