Founded in 1908, the Everhart Museum is one of the oldest museums in the state of Pennsylvania and part of the early 20th-century regional museum movement. Monies and initial natural history collections were provided by Dr. Isaiah Fawkes Everhart, a Scranton physician and Civil War veteran. Everhart conceived that the Museum would serve not only the immediate City of Scranton, but the whole of Northeast Pennsylvania.
The original focus of the Museum was to create a comprehensive display of the state’s native birds, animals, and other wildlife. The Museum building was expanded in 1928 with two gallery wings added to display ethnographic and archaeological collections. In the 1940s, a significant collection of American folk art was given to the Museum, complementing its earlier holdings in the areas of Japanese, African, and Oceanic art. Collecting continued throughout the 20th-century with holdings added in 19th-century and contemporary American art and regionally-made Dorflinger glass.
The building itself is a masonry structure designed in a Beaux-Arts style in keeping with the “City Beautiful” movement of the early 20th-century. Fifteen gallery spaces provide display area for both permanent and temporary exhibitions. The Everhart Museum is located in Scranton’s Nay Aug Park and is fully accessible to the general public on a five day/week schedule. Exhibitions and programs at the Museum are guided by it’s mission, as well as the philosophy inscribed on the exterior walls: “Science, art and literature record humanities impression of today and its attempt to adjust itself for tomorrow.”