Harmon Hall, Home of the Warren County History Center
The Warren County History Center is housed in Harmon Hall, an historic, three story, 28,000-square-foot brick building. It contains artifacts from prehistoric eras to the mid-20th century periods. It holds more than 30 exhibits on three floor levels displaying thousands of items that will interest both young and old alike.
The Warren County Historical Society can trace its roots to the late 1930s when a group of 19 Warren County residents decided that there needed to be a safe and controlled setting in which to store and exhibit the artifacts that define the history of the area. In 1945, this group acquired Glendower State Memorial to serve as the first museum. The society continued to operate from there for the next 15 years.
As the museum began to gather regional interest and more objects were acquired, it became obvious to all concerned that a larger facility was required. So in 1960, through arrangements with the Harmon Civic Trust, the society moved into Harmon Hall. This building was built in 1913 , to be a recreation center, and was then donated to the City of Lebanon, by Mr. Willam Harmon. In 1961, this building became the home of the Warren County Historical Society Museum. This stately three-story structure gave the society a more spacious area in which to exhibit artifacts and a more convenient l location for visitors.
The diversity of the society’s collection and historical documents grew with the move to Broadway. In a short time, additions to the collections stretched this building’s resources. The society decided that it would be impractical, from both a financial and a logistical standpoint, to move from Harmon Hall, so plans were made for a fund raising campaign to expand and remodel. This effort, which began in 1978, was completed in 1981 with the opening of the Shaker Gallery and the addition of 10,000 square feet on the back of the building. The Harmon Civic Trust deeded the building to the society to ensure that it would have a permanent home.