Celebrating the History of the Mahoning Valley Since 1875

The year 2020 has already sealed itself into the history books as one for the generations.

For the Mahoning Valley, the global outbreak of the novel coronavirus and the COVID-19 pandemic took hold in March, advancing with high instances in Mahoning County in particular. Ohio Governor Mike DeWine, Ohio Health Director Dr. Amy Acton, and the Department of Health Development Services Agency instituted comprehensive guidelines and restrictions to effectively control the spread of the disease. MVHS closed its facilities to the public on Saturday, March 14, 2020.

With health and economic considerations, the state began a phasing in of reopening various types of businesses in response to declining cases and deaths. Those that serve large crowds of people have been some of the last permitted to open up again. The business types classified as “entertainment venues” received the Ohio Public Health Order. Museums would be allowed to reopen with health and safety precautions beginning June 10, 2020.

Mahoning Valley Historical Society began a gradual reopening plan, starting with Tyler History Center, on Friday, July 10, 2020 and finishing with Arms Family Museum on Friday, August 7, 2020.

Open With Care

Mahoning Valley Historical Society began discussions and extra cleaning practices of its facilities in late February 2020, as news of the outbreak began to be more revealed. Staff has been working from home, with only limited site visits to inspect our properties. In June, MVHS began preparing our plan to reopen with the health and safety of all people eventually entering our buildings. An internal task force has prepared and continues to adapt a protocol that details all the necessary steps to open our doors again to our community.

The MVHS Executive Board of Directors has approved a gradual approach, one we like to call “open with care.” The way we collect, preserve, and teach the history of the people of the Mahoning Valley must now be done with extra sensitivities and health precautions. Cleaning and sanitizing procedures to social distancing are renewed priorities.

Yet, with all these extra precautions, we remain committed to providing the best experiences for our members and patrons. Exhibits that only had limited viewing before our pandemic closure, will be extended. New online features have been implemented to keep bringing local history to life. Programming and events have and will continue to be presented in virtual ways. MVHS will also be undertaking an effort to preserve the stories of living through the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic in the Mahoning Valley for the historical appreciation of future generations.

Many of you have reached out to us throughout the closure process. MVHS thanks you for your concerns and continued interest in our mission and operations. There will be changes in our hours, admission fees, visiting procedures, and other functional aspects, in order to reopen safely. We ask for your patience and care for our guides, volunteers, and staff during this next phase. Please click here to review our full reopening details.

Preserving history is our pledge to you. A financial gift to MVHS is a worthwhile investment and truly appreciated.

Tyler History Center

Open Friday – Sunday · Noon – 4:00pm
Call 330-743-2589 to confirm availability for visit

Arms Family Museum

Reopens on Friday, August 7, 2020 · Noon – 4:00pm
Call 330-743-2589 to confirm availability for visit

Archives Resource Center

By appointment only
Call 330-743-2589, ext. 127
to schedule a visit

Business & Media Archives

Reopens on Friday, August 7, 2020
By appointment only
Call 330-743-2589, ext. 105 to schedule a visit

on exhibit

Exhibits at Arms Family Museum and Tyler History Center showcase the Historical Society’s diverse collection and celebrate the people and history of the Mahoning Valley.

Things may be a little different this year but MVHS is thrilled to offer the Mahoning Valley its History To Go Event Series 2020. This year’s events include:

  • Upper Fifth Avenue Tour—July 25
  • Amazing History Race: Mahoning Valley—August 22
  • Founders Day: Good Humor Tour—September 10
  • IMPORTANT UPDATE! The Oak Hill Cemetery tour will NOT be held in-person this year due to crowd restrictions at the cemetery. Instead, watch our special, online video presentation for the October “Bites and Bits of History: Strolling Through Oak Hill Cemetery” on October 22!

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