For Media Inquiries

Jen VanRy

(585) 294-8280

Becky Wehle

(585) 294-8245

Genesee Country Village & Museum was founded in 1966 by John L. Wehle, created to help preserve the vanishing rural architecture of the Genesee Country, an area encompassing the Genesee River and stretching from the Finger Lakes to the Niagara Frontier and Lake Erie. Today, this living history museum includes a 19th-century village, a gallery, a nature center and 600 acres of gardens and wildlife.

More about GCV&M

  • GCV&M is New York State's largest living history museum and hosts more than 90,000 visitors each year.
  • Furnished with more than 15,000 artifacts, the Historic Village includes 68 structures originating from 11 counties in Western New York. Early maps and business directories guided the planning of the village. Historians also built upon their knowledge of the past by reading court records, newspapers, inventories, journals and letters.
  • The buildings depict how a small town in the region might have changed over time, providing insight into the origins of current customs, traditions and social values. Grouped into three different periods in history, the village includes a Pioneer Settlement (1795–1830), Center Village (1830–1860) and Gas Light District (1860–1900). Each area has live trade, craft, cooking and agricultural demonstrations with knowledgeable interpreters in period-appropriate dress. The village depicts activities of everyday life as well as seasonal programs that allow visitors to see what it might have been like to refine maple sugar, harvest field crops, participate in an agricultural fair, celebrate Yuletide or fight a Civil War battle.
  • More than a dozen gardens populate Genesee Country Village & Museum. Each of the village gardens is designed as part of a building’s historical environment. There is a medicinal herb garden, several hardy vegetable gardens and ornamental gardens reflecting the tastes of the 19th-century leisure class.
  • In the museum, the world-renowned John L. Wehle Gallery features paintings, prints and sculptures of sporting and wildlife art that span four centuries. Its Susan Greene Historic Costume Collection is heralded as one of the finest collections of 19th-century clothing in North America. Together, the exhibits help visitors gain a deeper appreciation of America’s past.
  • The Genesee Country Nature Center includes hundreds of acres of woodlands, meadows, old fields, geologic formations, ponds and streams. With five miles of themed nature trails and 175 acres of wildlife habitat, the grounds are open year-round for visitors to explore natural history and the area’s flora and fauna. Museum naturalists regularly lead walks to explore its tantalizing wonders.
  • Silver Base Ball Park, the first and finest replica 19th-century base ball park in the country, is the place every summer that turns into a Field of Dreams. Here, on summer weekends, players dressed in long-sleeved, wool-blend jerseys play on clubs that existed in the Rochester area in the 1860s, before the introduction of gloves and other protective gear. The program also includes two women's teams - the Belles and Porters (nee Priscilla Porter's Astonishing Ladies Base Ball Club, who hearken back to the women's barnstorming clubs of the era).