The Black Rock Historical Society is an all-volunteer organization whose mission is to educate the public about the communities of Black Rock, Grant-Amherst, Riverside and West Hertel in the city of Buffalo, New York. The Society collects, preserves, interprets, and exhibits information about these communities to inspire and visitors and instill a deeper appreciation of the important role that the residents of these communities have played in local, national and world history.
The Society maintains a museum at 436 Amherst Street where visitors are welcome to view exhibits on early Black Rock, Erie Canal, War of 1812, Fenian Invasion of Canada as well as industrial heritage, schools and churches, businesses and social organizations, and cultures that have shaped the development and growth of northwest Buffalo.
The Society hosts periodic lectures and presentations including a Fall Speaker Series whose 2020 presentations are available for viewing on our website. We have organized and participated in the commemoration of major historical events including the War of 1812 Bicentennial, the 100th Anniversary of the opening of the Black Rock Lock, 150th Anniversary of the Fenian Invasion, and Erie County Bicentennial. We partner with local schools as a part of our annual program – Art as History – which fosters a better understanding of neighborhood history along with pride in student artwork and their community. In 2017, we also began our commemoration of the construction of the Erie Canal with exhibits as well as an educational and entertaining interpretation of a simulated “Black Rock vs. Buffalo” debate over its proposed western terminus. We plan to continue our Erie Canal celebration through 2023 – 200 years after the canal reached Black Rock – and into 2025 to commemorate its grand opening.