Museum, Archives & Collections

Acadia Ranch Museum

View of Acadia from rear of cabins, circa 1908

View of Acadia from Rear of Cabins, circa 1908

In 1978 the Society purchased and stabilized the Acadia Ranch building, which today serves as its headquarters and a museum devoted to regional history. In 1984, the Acadia Ranch was placed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Archives & Collections

The Society counts among its collections and archives prehistoric artifacts collected by well-known avocational archaeologist Alice Carpenter; letters, photos and other memorabilia from several of Oracle’s noteworthy authors, including Eulalia ‘Sister’ Bourne, Elizabeth Lambert Wood, Harold Bell Wright and Edward Abbey; cowboy artifacts and memorabilia from several area ranches, including the Huggett Family Collection of ranching artifacts; an historic photo archive, created from over 250 negatives dating back to the early 1900s; as well as author manuscripts, letters and other important examples of material and visual culture that best reflect this region’s rich ethnic diversity and history.

Alice Carpenter collection

Alice Carpenter Collection

Funding from the Arizona Historical Society and Arizona State Library, Archives and Public Records and the untiring efforts of OHS volunteers allowed the Society to begin digitizing its collection and improve the storage and protection of its historic records. The OHS Library/Lisa Armstrong Memorial Reading Room offers a documents archive, research files and numerous books on local history. Please call (520) 896-9609 to schedule an appointment.

Lee Kannally Collection

Lee Kannally painting

Lee Kannally Painting

OHS continues in its efforts to restore, catalogue and ensure the proper safekeeping of the paintings of Lee Kannally, an early Oracle rancher whose primitive, unique and delightful depictions of 1920s cowboy life have gained wide popularity. OHS is joined in these efforts by Friends of Oracle State Park.

Capital Improvements

Thanks to grants from the Arizona Historical Society, Southwestern Foundation, Sonoran Searchers Chapter of The Questers International and the invaluable volunteer efforts of expert architectural preservationist Chuck Sternberg, the Society has made extensive capital improvements to the Acadia Ranch structure.

Acacia Porch, 2013

Acacia Porch, 2013

These include the full restoration of 13 rooms of the Acadia complex, its bathhouse (one of the oldest in Oracle), the icehouse, the water tank, the porch of the main building, as well as major repairs to roof, drainage and plumbing.