Olive Free Library

Donald F. & Edna G. Bishop Museum Room

Purpose of the Collection

The Local History Museum and Special Collections of the Olive Free Library serve to collect artifacts directly related to the history of the Town of Olive and its inhabitants, with concentrations in the time of the town’s settlement through the completion of the Ashokan Reservoir and early 20th Century.

Current Exhibit:

Life Before the Reservoir

Travel back in time and discover what Olive was like before the Ashokan Reservoir was built.  Come see what our first schools were like, how people made their living, and what the local towns and buildings looked like before we lost them.

Visit our new exhibit during regular library hours.

Funding for this exhibit was made possible through the grant Libraries Transforming Communities: Focus on Small and Rural Libraries.  It is an initiative of the American Library Association (ALA) in collaboration with the Association for Rural & Small Libraries (ARSL).

Research Request

Our archivist can provide reference assistance via email or by phone regarding the contents of and access to our collections as well as brief answers to factual questions; however, we do not have the resources to do extensive research for our patrons. If a question requires extensive time, we may suggest arranging for an on-site appointment. Please email museum@olivefreelibrary.org with your request and allow a minimum of 2 weeks for our archivist to complete it.

The Consolidated Digital Collection of the History of the Town of Olive

We have partnered with the Historical Society of the Town of Olive, The Ashokan Center, Brunel Sculpture Park, and the Town of Olive on an extensive online collection that provides materials that give you a clearer picture of life in the Town of Olive before, during, and after the building of the Ashokan Reservoir.

The Consolidated Digital Collection of the History of the Town of Olive is supported by federal American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds allocated to the New York State Library by the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS; imls.gov) and administered by Southeastern NY Library Resources Council.


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