Skip to main content

Pioneer & Historical Society

Pioneer & Historical Society

The Pioneer and Historical Society of Muskingum County was incorporated way back in 1890 as an outgrowth of two earlier groups. Our collection was then housed in a room in the old Soldiers and Sailors Monumental Association building on North Fifth Street. That building was torn down in 1937 and the Historical Society moved into the old Bailey home at the corner of Maple and Adair. We shared the building with the Zanesville Art Institute. As the Art Institute expanded less space was available for use by the Historical Society making it difficult to accept donations and expand the collection.

In 1970, the Society acquired a permanent home, the Dr. Increase Mathews House on Woodlawn Avenue, given by Mrs. F.F. Frazier. Later that year, following a successful financial campaign, the oldest building in Muskingum County was opened to the public as a museum. In 1976, thanks to the generous support of the Soldiers and Sailors Monumental Association, a new exhibit opened in the Mathews House honoring Muskingum County veterans from all of our nation’s wars. The exhibit was updated in 2007. In 1983, The Stone Academy, constructed in 1809 and arguably the most historic building in the county was donated to the Historical Society by Lydia McHenry Taylor on the condition that it be used as a museum.

Today we continue to operate both museums. Hundreds visit each year including many school groups. Operating expenses, maintenance, and repairs consume our annual budget making it very difficult to even consider any improvements.


We hope you enjoy our work.

Please support this 72-year tradition of trusted historical writing and the volunteers that sustain it with a donation to American Heritage.


Featured Articles

The world’s most prominent actress risked her career by standing up to one of Hollywood’s mega-studios, proving that behind the beauty was also a very savvy businesswoman. 

Rarely has the full story been told about how a famed botanist, a pioneering female journalist, and First Lady Helen Taft battled reluctant bureaucrats to bring Japanese cherry trees to Washington. 

Often thought to have been a weak president, Carter was strong-willed in doing what he thought was right, regardless of expediency or the political fallout.

Why have thousands of U.S. banks failed over the years? The answers are in our history and politics.

In his Second Inaugural Address, Abraham Lincoln embodied leading in a time of polarization, political disagreement, and differing understandings of reality.