Welcome to a new season at
Turner Museum and Carlin House!
Open Saturdays 10-2
Please see our Calendar of Events
for more information.
Museums are currently closed for the season
Turner Museum Open with the Annual Student Art Show
Carlin House and Turner Museum Open with Regular Exhibits
Old Settlers' Day
Christmas Tree Lighting and Santa Visit, Museums are Open 10 am-8 pm
Events Begin after the Holiday
December 2 thru April 2019
Museums closed for the season
For archived newsletters (from 1980 through Winter 2016) that you can read online or print and read at home, click on
Palmyra Historical Newsletters
Newsletters from Spring, 2016 to the present are available to society members. Want to become a member and get the latest news from the Palmyra Historical Society? Contact us using our Help Us tab and we'll tell you how you can join our growing number of supporters, to whom we extend a heartfelt thank you.
Would your group like an exclusive tour of the Carlin House and Turner Museum? Or would you like to use our public space for a special event?
Contact us with your request
(using our Help Us tab).
The Palmyra Historical Society is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. Donations are tax-deductible and always welcome.
Frequently Asked Questions
What kind of organization are you?
We are a non-profit corporation, known as a 501 C-3 organization.
What does non-profit mean?
Non-profit is a legal term that means that we can take in and spend money but that any excess goes back into the corporation. None is paid in dividends to shareholders.
Can non-profit corporations have paid employees?
Yes, non-profits can pay employees a salary but not a share of the profits. We do not have any permanent paid employees and are thus an all-volunteer organization. We did hire a contract employee for a limited term to help us implement our Past Perfect software system.
How do you make your money?
Our money comes from memberships, donations, memorial gifts, other gifts, and the sale of our publications and other items in the gift shop. As a non-profit corporation, we are also permitted to apply for grants from a wide variety of public and private sources.
What are your expenses?
We have expenses in maintaining the buildings and grounds and in operating them both as history museums.
No, as a non-profit we are tax-exempt. We do have legal requirements to make our financial condition and transactions transparent
Do you engage in politics?
Although some of our work could conceivably have political implications we are non-partisan and do not endorse candidates or political parties.
Who runs your organization?
We have a president and board of directors who come from the general public and are people who are interested in local history. Any member of the community is welcome to appear before the board and seek appointment as a director. The officers are elected by the board.
What is the point of having a local historical society?
We believe that local history provides value in the community by helping to keep alive the memories of the past. Besides the fact that the past is frequently interesting on its own terms, its knowledge gives us insight into we who we are and how we got here. Even as a small community, Palmyra has a rich story that can be understood in the larger state and national context. We want to help tell that story.
What sort of services do you provide?
We have a historic house (the Carlin House) and modern museum (the Turner Museum) that are open most Saturdays in season and by appointment.
We have a short video on the history of Palmyra that can serve as an introduction to the museum.
We prepare exhibitions that rotate on an irregular basis in the exhibition hall.
We publish, and have since 1980, a quarterly newsletter with historical articles and news about the society.
We keep a list of publications byboard members and local residents that help to tell our town’s story.
We have an obituaries list of local residents.
We have a family file.
We have a information file for most PHS graduating classes.
We have a file of historic photographs that we sometimes use in our exhibits.
We store many valuable artifacts in our storage room in the Turner Museum.
We have recorded more than twenty oral history interviews with members of the community.
We have a board of directors and network of friends with a vast collective knowledge of our community.
We have a very nice facility with space that can be used for various public events.
We keep a file of our local newspaper, the Palmyra Enterprise.
We sponsor Old Settlers’ Day in July, the longest continuous event of its kind in Wisconsin, dating to 1885.
We sponsor a Christmas Tree Lighting and Santa Visit community event in November.
We maintain a website that will be the point of entry for many people seeking knowledge about our community and a repository of information for others.
Do you accept assistance in operating the society?
Yes, by all means. We accept volunteers to help us with a multitude of tasks. We also accept monetary donations as well as donations of historic records and objects. Please check with us to determine if your donation would have historical value and that we have the ability to store it.