Bradford County Historical Society


Nineteenth century jail converted into county museum. Specs O'Keefe of  the 1950 Brinks robbery was incarcerated here. Exhibits in original jail  cells featuring Civil War, Native Americans, log cabin, rural life,  jail dungeon cell, and much more. Genealogical research center. Near MM272


The Bradford County Historical Society is one of the oldest  county historical societies in the state. A foster child of The first  museum, located behind the Court House, Towanda.the Bradford County  Medical Society, the Bradford County Historical Society was organized on  May 5, 1870, and incorporated on February 12, 1875. A singular donation  of ten dollars constituted a life membership, with an exemption to the  holder from further dues. Otherwise, an annual contribution of one  dollar from members was required.
In 1998, the Bradford County  Commissioners voted to deed the former county jail on Pine Street in  Towanda to the Bradford County Historical Society to be renovated and  used as the new home of the society museum and research library. In  2000, the research library phase of the “Jail Project” was completed.  The remaining exhibit construction was completed in May 2002, when the  entire facility became available for public use.

The jail was  built starting in 1871, and served the county 118 years. In 1991, after  the jail was determined to be in a rapidly deteriorating state, the  County decided that a new larger and modern jail would be built in the  county. The Bradford County Commissioners transferred the property to  the Bradford County Historical Society in 1998. Today, the museum  features two floors of museum exhibits, which are creatively arranged in  what were the cellblocks. The third floor features a genealogical and  historical research library that houses a variety of resources for  researchers.

The Research Center and Genealogical Library is  located on the third floor of the Bradford County Historical Society.  It's purpose is to acquire and permanently preserve valuable public and  private records that establish, maintain and develop the identity of  Bradford County and to make archives available to the public for  personal research.

Museum hours:
MEMORIAL DAY THROUGH LABOR DAY, Wednesday - Friday, 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.
MEMORIAL DAY THROUGH LABOR DAY, First Saturday of each month, 10 a.m. - 2 p.m.
Closed SEPTEMBER through MAY except by appointment.
Closed on all Federal Holidays
Additional hours for groups and school classes by appointment.

Library hours:
YEAR AROUND, Wednesday - Friday, 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.
YEAR AROUND, First Saturday of each month, 10 a.m. - 2 p.m.
Closed on all Federal Holidays         Amenities:        Wheelchair Accessible

  • Attraction
  • Museums
  • Heritage & History
  • Historic Places
  • Bradford
  • Upstate PA/Endless Mountains
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    Details: Tasting room, events. Award-winning Francat blush, Traminette tropical white, more.

  • Bradford County Regional Arts Council

    Details: BCRAC is a non-profit organization dedicated to building and supporting a thriving regional arts community by advocating for the arts; cultivating quality arts programming; preserving Bradford county's historic theaters for performances, community events, movies

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