Last week, Kelly Rapone (Haunted History Trail of New York State founder/Genesee County) and I visited The Museums of Historic Palmyra (Finger Lakes region/Wayne County). We were hosted by Christine Worth (Wayne County) and the museum’s charismatic executive director Bonnie Hays.
It was an absolutely jawdropping experience to examine the depth of this museum’s collection. The authentic canal era artifacts and the way they are presented is top notch. Ghosts or no ghosts, you have to see this place. Kelly and I were blown away.
The Museums are actually five smaller museums all next door to each other. One of them called William Phelps Store and Home is literally like stepping into the past. It is a preserved original general store, as if 100 years had never pass. The Palmyra Historical Museum was a former hotel, which upstairs room are period-dedicated exhibition spaces.
Palmyra is an Erie Canal town, so you know from history that this place was rough n’ tumble. To quote executive director Bonnie Hays “There were murders on top of murders here!” The actual Palmyra Historical Museum building sites on the location of an unthinkable tragedy, which contributes to some of the ghostly events. The staff and volunteers regularly report the presence of children, museum artifacts moved, ghostly touches and even a ghost cat. The Museums of Historic Palmyra offers ghost hunts and ghost walks throughout the year, check with their website for more info.
This is so worth the trip. Plus, it’s super easy to get to…six miles off the New York State Thruway between Rochester and Syracuse.