Alice, Did You Know?

It’s the smell of seasoned artifacts. Hundred-year-old heirlooms and porcelain ornately arranged in every crevice of the building. Walking through the foyer, the old walls and wooden floor creak with the settling frost – the welcoming murmurs of the museum’s matron, Alice T. Miner.

Its size is daunting; it seems impossible that the 19th century stone building houses 17 rooms. The narrow hallways open to large vaulted ceilings, yet it feels claustrophobic.

Photo by Shaun Heffernan
Photo by Shaun Heffernan

“[People] are surprised when they first come in – not everything is just old furniture, there’s a lot more,” said Ellen Adams, assistant director of the Alice T. Miner Museum. They are no longer actively collecting items, but they do periodically receive donations.

The museum houses over 3,000 items of memorabilia, not including the Miner’s personal archives, which include several hundred books, family photos, letters and photography.

Unlike the asphalt roads and heavy traffic of Interstate 87, Route 9 was the main form of transportation in the early 1900s. Model Ts spewed up dirt rather than burning rubber.

The Alice T. Miner museum emulates family life nearly a century ago. Rather than losing its relevance, neighboring Chazy Central Rural School continues to education the youth on the rich history of Upstate New York and the contribution of philanthropists William H. and Alice T. Miner.

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