The DCHA Galleries

DCHA features two exhibit galleries.

A new exhibit entitled Delaware County History Highlights was installed in the summer of 2017. This exhibit explores some of the larger topics in the history of Delaware County including the Anti-Rent War, Railroads, Industry, Wars, Reservoirs and Tourism.

Also on display in the Main Gallery is a semi-permanent exhibit: "This Valley used to be all Farms..." A Celebration of Delaware County's Agricultural Traditions.

The Elijah Thomas Gallery hosts a variety of exhibits throughout the year.

Currently on display: Arthur Austin: Photos of Franklin, 1900 - 1940

An exhibit of works by Franklin amateur photographer, Arthur E. Austin.

Austin was born in 1868 and moved to Franklin as a young man where he married Louise F. Dart. Together, the couple raised a daughter, Merle Austin (Nolf).

Census records inform us that Austin worked in a number of different professions. As a young man, while residing in Brooklyn, he was listed as a clerk in a furniture store. By the early twentieth century, however, after he and Louise had taken up residence in the village of Franklin, his occupation was noted as undertaker's assistant. In later years he worked as an embalmer, presumably in the same establishment in Franklin.

At the outset of the twentieth century, Austin took up photography as a hobby, aiming his camera at buildings in and around his hometown. As the century progressed his hobby took him out along the valleys and into the hills of western Delaware County. Along the way he also captured some of his friends, family and neighbors. Arthur Austin died in May, 1943.

The Arthur Austin Collection of over 500 glass-plate negatives was generously gifted to DCHA in 2017 by the Fenimore Art Museum in Cooperstown. DCHA has since scanned the negatives so we now have digital versions of each.

DCHA's exhibit of Arthur Austin's work is the first time numerous of his photos will have been shown collectively. The exhibit will open in mid-October and remain on display until early 2023. Admission to the exhibit, as always, is free!

Inside our exhibit galleries, gift shop and library, face masks or coverings are required at all times. Visitors who are not part of the same household should stay socially distanced at all times. The number of visitors at any one time may be limited.

DCHA will reserve the right to deny access to the museum, gift shop and library if there is any cause for concern for the safety and well-being of our staff and visitors. Please don't hesitate to contact us with questions or concerns. Call 607-746-3849, or email

Accessible by concrete ramp. Restrooms.

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