Mission: The historical and genealogical society of somerset county is the steward of the cultural heritage of somerset county through its historical collections, educational programs, and genealogical archives.
Programs: Mountain craft days - a three day traditional craft and trades festival featuring over 125 artisans, entertainers, historical interpreters, and mountain foods of the region. Participants must demonstrate their craft skills and knowledge with visitors as they sell their wares. New artisans are added each year while some artisans have a long tradition of participation. An auction of craftsman's wares each year provides some funding to artisans currently participating or someone who is interested in developing a new craft demonstration to perpetuate traditional craft skills. The festival features a wide variety of artisans from textiles to wood, iron, leather, log hewing, stone cutting and more. The festifal attracts over 7,000 visitors annually and is presented amid a forest and meadow setting. Friday is dedicated to student education and artisans cater their demonstrations accordingly. On-site and satellite educational programs - staff and volunteers present hands-on educational programs to students visiting the somerset historical center. They learn about being a pioneer in the wilderness of western pennsylvania, cooking and food preparation, farming practices, log construction, and faashion a tin/wood scoop to take home. Staff and volunteers take programs into kindergarten through 2nd grades throughout the somerset county region. The society's eductional programs reach over 2,000 students per year. School of coopering - the craft of coopering is taught during this three day class using only traditional metods and hand tools. Up to 12 participants learn the history of the craft, various types of coopering, especially the type practiced in the maple sugar region of somerset county, safe tool usage, as they fashion a maple sugar bucket (keeler) that they take home upon completion. The class has been taught for over 15 years with over 150 participants.