Irene Zenev, Executive Director, with Brad Cloepfil, architect of the Corvallis Museum.

Welcome to the Benton County Historical Society and Museum, one of Benton County, Oregon’s preeminent cultural institutions. We recently re-launched our Web site, enhancing its clarity and accessibility. Here you can learn more not only about the Society’s collections, but also about the eclectic collection assembled by the Oregon Agricultural College professor, Dr. John Horner, around the turn of the last century. Until 1995, the Horner Museum on the Oregon State University campus attracted thousands of visitors, but OSU closed the museum due to budget cuts. The Benton County Historical Society saved the collection and added it to its own holdings in a purpose-built museum storage facility.

We are now in the process of raising funds to build a new museum in downtown Corvallis, Ore., to give the public more access to our fascinating collections. I hope that you will also read about the ways to become involved with the Society, both through membership and fundraising events.

The Society’s Merriam Library in the Philomath museum opened in 1980 and is now a leading research center for Benton County history. Information about the library’s services and holdings can be found on this Web Site.

If you have enjoyed your online preview of the Benton County Historical Society’s exhibitions and collections, I hope you will feel inspired to visit our galleries in person. I look forward to welcoming you.

With kind regards,

Irene Zenev
Executive Director