The roots of the Maumee Valley Historical Society goes back to 1864 with the formation of the Maumee Valley Pioneer Association. The founding members were early settlers of Northwest Ohio, who came together to protect and preserve the historic artifacts of the Maumee Valley as well as document information about themselves for future generations.
Peter Navarre was the first president of the Society and served until his death in 1873. Horatio Conant served as Vice-President. The first meeting was held in Toledo, on February 22, 1865, with Morrison R. Waite of Maumee City, Ohio as the guest speaker.
In 1918, the Society became known as the Historical Society of Northwest Ohio. The object of the Society was to: 1) Acquire books, printed papers, and manuscripts, 2) Encourage writing of books and papers, 3) Deliver lectures and addresses on subjects of history, 4) To collect and arrange objects of historical interest and provide for their preservation and exhibition, and 5) To provide a museum to house these collections.
The purpose of the Historical Society broadened in the late 1950's when it's dream of operating a museum became a reality. In 1957, Rilla Hull, the last direct descendent of James and Mary Wolcott, passed away and left her ancestral home to St. Paul's Episcopal Church of Maumee. The Church sold the estate to the City of Maumee, and is managed by the Maumee Valley Historical Society.
The mission of the Maumee Valley Historical Society is to collect, preserve, study, interpret and communicate the history and culture of the Maumee Valley for the public. This mission is accomplished through a variety of educational programs, events and projects, which are presented within the context of an early nineteenth to early twentieth century recreated village around a central green on the grounds of the Wolcott House, using period structures containing appropriate furnishings and artifacts.