Experiencing history with you

by remembering, discovering, and sharing our stories; sparking emotional and social connections within our unique community.

1872 Hopkins Atlas Plate

1872


A map of buildings and owners in what we know as Canalside today. In 1872, when this map was made, Buffalo’s canal district was a dense, roiling center of commerce, industry, transportation, immigration, wealth, poverty, crime, and disease.

Mary Talbert Portrait

1929


Portrait of Mary Burnett Talbert (1866-1923) by G. Gonzalez, a civil rights activist, educator, and WWI Red Cross nurse. Talbert was a tireless worker for human rights in the late 19th and early 20th century and is perhaps best remembered for laying the foundations for the passage of the Dyer Anti-Lynch Bills.

Construction at the Museum

The Museum is open with pay what you wish admission, Wednesdays through Saturdays, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Uncovering history kicks up some dust! Due to ongoing historic restoration, parts of our lower level and our accessible entrance will be temporarily closed. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause and encourage you to call (716) 873-9644 ext. 309 or email kreed@buffalohistory.org for updates on construction and access.

Later this year, you can look forward to the grand reopening of the Museum’s lower level, restored to the original vision of architect George Cary! Learn more from our press release.

Pan-Am Night Scene Panoramic

1901


In 1901 when the Pan-American Exposition opened, the sheer volume and color of electric lights, designed to be experienced after dark, was a new experience for Americans. This view, looking north from the Triumphal Bridge, includes the Temple of Music, Machinery and Transportation Buildings, Court of Fountains, Electric Tower, Manufactures Building, Liberal Arts and Ethnology Building, and part of the Government Building.

Evelyn Rumsey Cary Suffrage Poster

1905


This poster was a favorite of the women’s suffrage movement. Created by Evelyn Rumsey Cary (1855-1924) of Buffalo, it is an elegant example of Art Nouveau graphic design, depicting a female figure transformed into a fruit tree. The building behind her may be based on the east façade of the Albright-Knox Art Gallery.

Let's stay connected.

The Buffalo History Museum takes the safety, well-being, preserving, and advancement of our community to be of the utmost priority. For information regarding current events including support of Black Lives Matter, COVID-19, and resources, please visit our Community Updates page.

Want to contribute to preserving history as it unfolds? Consider donating photos, journals, and more to our Chronicling COVID-19 collection!

Iver-Johnson Revolver

ca. 1901


Iver-Johnson, 32 caliber, nickel plated revolver used by Leon Czolgosz to assassinate President William McKinley outside the Temple of Music at the Pan American Exposition.

Grover Cleveland’s Cake Box & Cake

1886


Cake box given as a wedding favor to the guests of the wedding of President Grover Cleveland to Frances Folsom in the White House on June 2, 1886. Inside the box there is still a portion of the dark cake that was given to the guests.

Keep our history alive.

When you support The Buffalo History Museum, you make inspiration and discovery happen. Ensure that the stories of today and the past are preserved and accessible for generations to come.

Make a Donation

Pony Coat

1919–1920


This overcoat belonged to Henry J. Miller. He was very close with his horse, Skip, and when Skip passed away in 1919, Henry had him made into this overcoat.

Larkin Photo in Atrium


The Larkin Administration Building was the first major commercial commission in Frank Lloyd Wright’s career. The central court shown here provided natural light to all five floors. The Larkin Building was demolished in 1950.

Scott Norwood Helmet

1985–1991


Scott Norwood’s only helmet worn in Super Bowl XXV, SB XXVI, Pro Bowl, regular season and playoff games from 1985-1991. It is part of the Greg D. Tranter Collection of Buffalo Bills Memorabilia.

Get Involved

There are many ways to become involved with the Museum. Two of the most popular ways are by becoming a member or volunteering.

Members support the Museum with an annual fee that includes perks such as free admission, discounted admission to programs, invitations to members-only events, and more

Volunteers help with fundraising events, providing guided museum tours, and cataloging artifacts.

Membership  |  Volunteer

Winifred Stanley Poster

1942


Pioneering attorney Winifred Stanley (1909-1996), who grew up in Buffalo and earned her law degree from the University at Buffalo, was elected to the U.S. Congress in 1942. In 1944, she introduced the first equal pay legislation in American history. She is buried in Mount Olivet Cemetery in Tonawanda. Donated by Mary Louise Stanley.

Automaton

Ca. 1895


This is Madame Le Doll, an automaton imported from a doll show in Paris and was the highlight of the Great Buffalo Doll Show in 1895. With a turn of a key, Madame Le Doll turns her head, fans herself, twirls her parasol, breathes, and winks.

Apostolic Clock

1881


An iconic timepiece created over the span of 35 years as a passion project by local engineer Myles Hughes. Before his death in 1923, he donated it to The Buffalo History Museum to be shared with the community. Like many late 19th century monumental clocks, its design was inspired by the Strasbourg Cathedral Clock of 1842. Apostles parade around Jesus every half hour with Peter turning his back to Jesus.

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On This Day In Buffalo

Thursday, June 10

Buffalo Daily Courier newspaper begins publishing, 1869

Architect Olaf Shelgren Sr. born, 1891

St. Stanislaus Roman Catholic Church founded, 1873

Former President Theodore Roosevelt gives speech, 1913

Friday, June 11

First horse car service begun, 1860

Main Street, Buffalo, NY, United States

Charles B. Olmstead appointed first district attorney of Niagara County, 1818

Now Erie County

Fairfield Library dedicated, 1897

Amherst St.

National Independent Telephone Association of the US holds convention in Buffalo, 1901

Fire at Empire Brewery, 1892

Washington St, Buffalo, NY, USA

Saturday, June 12

St. Paul's Episcopal Church cornerstone laid, 1850

Church St.

Niagara Falls dewatered to study geological conditions, 1969

Sunday, June 13

Bethel Synagogue incorporated,1848

Larkin Square opens, 2012

Seneca & Swan

Niagara Falls Municipal Airport opens, 1929

Death of playright A.R. Gurney, 2017

President Harry S. Truman visits Buffalo, 1947

Shirley Chisholm attends Buffalo NAACP dinner, 1966

Statler City, 107 Delaware Ave, Buffalo, NY 14202, USA

Monday, June 14

Buffalo's first suffrage parade, 1913

Wadsworth grain elevator destroyed by fire, 1878

Gates Circle fountain formally presented to City by Mrs. Pardee, 1904

Gates Circle, Gates Cir, Buffalo, NY, USA

Buffalo Courier-Express begins publishing, 1926

Luke Easter bats a home run out of the park, 1957

Offermann Stadium, E. Ferry & Michigan St. Buffalo

The Charity Organization Society establishes the Buffalo chapter of the American Red Cross, 1909

Ansley Wilcox mansion, Delaware Avenue

Buffalo Homeopathic Hospital Organized, 1872

Flag Day at the Pan-American Exposition, 1901