NEPA Scene Staff

Historical Society hosts horse-drawn carriage tours in Scranton, holiday raffle, and virtual lectures

Historical Society hosts horse-drawn carriage tours in Scranton, holiday raffle, and virtual lectures
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From a press release:

Like so many things this year, the holidays are going to be a bit different at the Lackawanna Historical Society’s Catlin House in Scranton. However, there will be new holiday happenings this season, some virtually and others socially distanced.

On Wednesday, Dec. 16, the LHS will be teaming up with Brookvalley Farm from Carbondale to offer horse-drawn carriage tours of downtown Scranton. The tours, scheduled for 7 p.m. and 8 p.m., include a chance to see the holiday decorations at night and learn a bit about Scranton’s architecture, as well as historical details about holiday traditions and Christmases past in Scranton. The Catlin House will have cookies, hot cocoa, and a fire to warm up with after the tours. Tickets are $25 per person, and space is limited to six people per tour. Face masks are required for all tour participants. Call the society at 570-344-3841 to make reservations.

In addition, Brookvalley Farm is running horse-drawn carriage rides without the tour at Nay Aug Park (1900 Mulberry St., Scranton) during the park’s annual holiday light display. More details can be found here.

In lieu of the annual open house and Holiday Emporium, the LHS has included some of its favorite local vendors in an online Holiday Emporium Raffle featuring prize baskets from local hotels and restaurants, as well as partners like the Circle Drive-In, Montage Mountain Ski Resort, the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders, and the Everhart Museum. Tickets, which are $2 each (with a free ticket for those who purchase five), are on sale now at The raffle will be open until Dec. 16, and winners will be drawn during the horse-drawn holiday tours.

The Catlin House continues to be open by appointment only from Tuesday through Friday from 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Stop by for a tour of the historic house, to do research on family genealogy and local history, or to purchase a holiday gift in the bookstore.

For those who would rather stay inside in this chilly weather, sit at home and connect with the LHS on Zoom. The Lackawanna Past Times virtual lecture series will present programs on local history topics biweekly on Fridays at 2 p.m. Email or check the society’s Facebook page for the Zoom login.

Lackawanna Past Times virtual lecture series schedule

Friday, Dec. 4 at 2 p.m.: “What’s New at the Everhart Museum” with curator Francesa Saldan. This will be a virtual tour of exhibits at the Everhart Museum, which will not reopen until February of 2021 due to COVID-19.

Friday, Dec. 18 at 2 p.m.: “The Delaware & Hudson Company” with S. Robert Powell, director of the Carbondale Historical Society. Dr. Powell will present his most recent research into America’s first million-dollar corporation.

Friday, Jan. 15 at 2 p.m.: “Black Scranton” with Glynis Johns. Join the founder of the Black Scranton movement to learn more about the often-overlooked history of Scranton’s black community.

Friday, Jan. 29 at 2 p.m.: “Roaring Brook Township” with North Pocono Boy Scout Corey Kowalski. He will present what he learned while working on his Citizenship in Community merit badge in the society library.

All lecture videos are archived on the LHS YouTube channel.

For more information of these events, call the society at 570-344-3841 or email

Founded in 1886 as the Lackawanna Institute of History and Science, the Lackawanna Historical Society provides the community with a record of local history through its museum and library collections, exhibits, and programs. In 1942, from the bequest of George H. Catlin, the society established its permanent home at Catlin’s 1912 residence at 232 Monroe Avenue in Scranton.

In 1965, Lackawanna County designated the Lackawanna Historical Society as the official county historical society, and the society continues to serve the county as a center for local history resources. It receives funding from the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission, the Catlin Memorial Trust, Lackawanna County, and memberships.

Photo by Rich Howells/NEPA Scene