About the Society’s Collection

HSCC works with objects relating to the history and culture of Carroll County, MD, a region settled in the early 18th-century by Pennsylvania Germans and Tidewater English emigrants. The collection is somewhat richer in material relating to Westminster, the largest town and the county seat, but the collection includes significant objects from throughout the County. The combined collection contains approximately 40,000 items dating from the settlement period to the present. These include almost 25,000 documents in the manuscript collection and over 5,000 photographs. Of the Society’s 9,000 three-dimensional holdings, the greatest numbers are in the textile category (3,000 artifacts), including clothing dating to the 1830s and quilts; ceramics and glass (1,000 artifacts), including a collection of locally-produced redware; furniture (500 artifacts), including examples of Baltimore furniture; and eleven tall clocks made in Carroll County and southern Pennsylvania. The collection includes objects that document local businesses and institutions.

Six (6) distinct bodies of artifacts and documents comprise ‘the Collection’. These components are:

  • Permanent: Items of historical and educational significance that are preserved in perpetuity, including the three historic houses owned and operated by HSCC.
  • Library/Reference: Materials acquired by HSCC for use in its Library, especially family history items.
  • Historical Society Archives: Records and publications generated by HSCC in its daily activities.
  • Architectural & Archaeological Artifacts: Whole or in fragments recovered by HSCC while working on HSCC historic structures or sites.
  • Study: Original or reproduced objects intended for research or educational programming.
  • Education: Objects acquired by HSCC for use in educational programming.


Visit our exhibitions in person and online. The Historical Society of Carroll County shares its vast collections through thought-provoking and multidisciplinary exhibitions that make history visible and accessible. Its permanent and changing exhibitions feature rare documents and artifacts that enable the public explore the people, places, and events that have shaped the history of our county in particular and the United States in general.


Call to schedule a visit to historic Cockey’s to see our current exhibits. Time on our Hands presents a brief history of timekeeping and includes pocket watches, mantel clocks, and 12 tall case clocks with Carroll County roots.  Our most recent exhibit,  Breaking Barriers. 1920 saw the beginning of national prohibition and the passage of the 19th Amendment which granted women the vote. The exhibit examines the role of Carroll County women in these two leading social movements of the 19th and early 20th centuries. The exhibit also includes short video interviews of current local female leaders who continue to break barriers today!

You can also catch a photographic exhibit on the county’s historic infatuation with wheels that is now featured in old City Hall at 1838 Emerald Hill Lane.  The magnificent house—located on the hill right behind the municipal parking lot that parallels Main Street—was built by one of Carroll County’s founding fathers, Colonel John K. Longwell, in 1842.  He called it Emerald Hill.  The premises are also home for the Carroll County Visitor Center which is open Monday through Saturday, 9-4 and most holidays 10-2.  (Phone: 410-848-1388)

View Exhibits

Past Exhibits

The Society has a long history of producing exhibitions geared toward telling the stories of Carroll County—of sharing the collective memories of the people whose accomplishments created the place that today we call home. Following are synopses of several of those past narratives.

View Exhibits

Virtual Exhibits

The Society believes that its collections must be accessible so that each person, no matter how he/she receives information, can have find a way that suits their learning style. As a consequence, HSCC will begin developing exclusive online exhibits, highlighting the myriad stories available to tell by utilizing its objects, documents, and historical expertise.

View Exhibits

Your Membership Counts!

Become a Member Today and Join Us in Connecting the Past and Present.

Become a Member

Help Support Our Mission

Donate Today and Help Us Keep the History of Carroll County Alive.

Support the Museum