Welcome to the Cynthiana Harrison County Museum!
The Cynthiana Harrison County Museum first opened its doors in July 1994. Housed in the historic Rohs Movie Theatre on S. Walnut St. the museum is a step back in time displaying nearly 3000 artifacts showcasing the community’s Military, Education, and Agricultural Histories. Rooms are also devoted to items from childhood, daily life, local industry, and the town’s churches, police and fire departments.
Our museum exists to preserve, display, maintain and share artifacts of historical significance. It provides a “snapshot” into the past. The Cynthiana Harrison County Trust Inc. established the museum to provide a place where the tangible history of this small town Kentucky community could reside.
Friday & Saturday 10am - 4pm or By Appointment
Contact: 859-234-7179 or email
Free Admission/Donations Accepted
4000 Sq. Ft. of Display Space Showcasing Nearly 3000 Artifacts!
This is a Mortician's "Cooling Table" and was used by undertakers for preparing bodies for burial. It was also used by field doctors during the Civil War for emergency amputations. The 'bed of the table is perforated with holes for the drainage of body fluids.
Our Museum's tool section is filled with hand hewn tools and implements used by local farmers, machinists, carpenters, and those of other professions. Come see how the tools from the past were made and used.
One of the Museum's prized artifacts are the more than 100 letters sent by Harrison county resident William Jones to his wife Mary while he was fighting for the Union during the Civil War. The hand written letters dated from 1864 have been transcribed into a binder and are available for reading. The letters discuss everything from his episodes on the battlefield to the loss of friends, and the love for his wife. A real treasure.
We are always receiving new artifacts in the museum. Here are a few recent acquisitions
Native American Gorget
Estimated to be 700-800 yrs. old and made of slate, Gorgets were worn around the neck from medieval times on. Native Americans wore these as adornments or for religious purposes
Orphan Brigade Reunion Quilt
The Museum received an email from Frankie McBride who discovered this amazing quilt in a flea market in Nebraska. She noticed the ribbon stitched into the quilt that read "Fifth Reunion First KY Orphan Brigade Cynthiana, KY August 18, 1886". Mrs.Mcbride contacted our museum asking if we'd be interested in displaying it. We were thrilled. While on vacation she came through Cynthiana and brought the quilt and donated it to the museum. While the original owner of the quilt is unknown, much is known about the Orphan Brigade and Cynthiana's connections to that group of men who were a part of it. In the Museu's library we had an 1868 edition of the "History of the First Kentucky Brigade". With the reunion quilt and renewed interest, a reprinted 2004 edition was purchased so visitors can read and learn about this group without damaging the original text.
History of the First Kentucky Brigade 1886 edition
History of the Orphan Brigade 2004 edition
New to our Children's Toy Room
We are so fortunate to have local toy collectors. These circa 1960 service vehicles are a new addition to our children's toy display.