Landis Valley Village & Farm Museum is 2.5 mi. n. on Oregon Pike (SR 272), following signs to 2451 Kissel Hill Rd. This living-history complex interprets 1740-1940 Pennsylvania German rural life with a mixture of modern and historic buildings on more than 100 acres. An orientation film program and exhibits are offered at the visitor center.
Brothers Henry and George Landis, both devoted collectors of historic memorabilia, founded the museum in 1925 in the barn of their Landis Valley homestead in order to preserve the heritage and culture of the Pennsylvania German region and their family; their collection eventually grew to more than 100,000 items.
From arrowheads gathered in their childhood, the brothers' collections expanded to include decorative arts and examples of early implements and tools used by their farming ancestors that were rapidly being replaced by more modern, mass-produced items. The museum continued to expand and eventually historic buildings (and some new ones) were acquired and moved to the site.
At the 1870s Landis Brothers House visitors can see the brothers' Victorian home interpreted as it might have appeared around the turn of the 20th century. The house originally belonged to the brothers' parents. The Erisman House, which dates to the 1800s, was moved from Lancaster to the village. In its current setting it is interpreted as the modest home of a seamstress.
Though built in 1941, the stone Tavern, with its huge kitchen and nearby barroom, was constructed to resemble one of the inns prevalent in this area in the early 19th century. An exhibit of Pennsylvania rifles, powder horns, handguns and gunsmithing tools can be seen at the Gun Shop, another of the “newer” buildings. The Country Store is stocked with items typical of a rural store of the early 1900s. Other buildings include a blacksmith shop, a schoolhouse and a barn.
Interpreters dressed in period clothing are stationed at many of the buildings and provide insights into everyday life. Traditional craft and skills demonstrations also are given. Special events are held throughout the year.
Picnicking is permitted. Time: Allow 2 hours minimum.
$12; $10 (ages 65+); $8 (ages 3-11). Additional fees may be charged during special events.
$2.00 off an adult admission.
Hours: Mon.-Sat. 9-5, Sun. noon-5, mid-Mar. to Dec. 31; Wed.-Sat. 9-5, Sun. noon-5, rest of year. Phone ahead to verify craft demonstrations and holiday schedules. Closed Jan. 1, Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Presidents Day, Columbus Day, Veterans Day, Thanksgiving, day after Thanksgiving and Christmas.