Founded in 1896, the Oswego County Historical Society has preserved and promoted the history of the greater Oswego area for more than 100 years.

In 1946, the historical society received a generous gift of a historic 19th century Italian Villa to serve as the permanent head quarters for a public museum.

Listed on the National Register of Historical Places, the Richardson-Bates House offers a unique glimpse of the lifestyle of a wealthy and  prominent Oswego family, as well as a museum dedicated to interpreting the history of the people and places in Oswego County through exhibits and educational programs.

Please visit to learn more!

  • Museum

  • The Richardson-Bates House was built in two stages as a private residence for Maxwell Richardson, a local attorney, real estate broker and two-term mayor of Oswego. In 1867, Max commissioned Rochester architect Andrew Jackson Warner to design the Tuscan Villa style residence for him and his family. The opulent interior decor reflects the 19th century Victorian fascination with art, culture, education and history.

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  • Admission

    • Adults – $8.00

    • Students & Seniors – $5.00

    • Children (6 – 12) – $3.00

    • Children Under 6 – Free

    • OCHS Members – Free

    • Children under 16 must be accompanied by an adult

  • Video

Oswego NY Cycling History Lecture and Exhibit Opening Sunday August 11

The History of Cycling in Oswego County will be presented at the Richardson Bates House Museum on Sunday August 11 at 1:30 pm.
Don Gillespie, Fulton native and renown artist, will unveil a painting he recently completed that shows the start of a bicycle race in 1895 at the corner of E. Third and Mohawk St. in the city of Oswego, featuring Dave Horton, the one-armed bicyclist. The painting's background is Max Richardson's family home (now the Richardson Bates House Museum) and in the misty background is the Home for the Homeless, (Now the recently closed Ladies Home.)
In the summer of 2015, Don Gillespie recreated a full scale replica of Charles Henry Grant’s seminal work, “At the Mercy of Neptune” which now hangs at the H. Lee White Maritime Museum.
The lecture is free and open to the public starting at 1:30 pm. Don will lecture on the historical research he did for the work, the painting will be unveiled and an exhibit showcasing Cycling in Oswego County will open.

Contact the Richardson-Bates House Museum for more information at 315-343-1342 or by email at

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