The Museum is owned and operated by the Camden Historical Society and is located in a building owned by Camden Council as part of the Camden Library complex.
In the late 1960s, thanks to a group of forward thinking volunteers, a plan was made for a Museum. The Society’s President, local pharmacist Colin Clark, was active in the Camden Rotary Club and worked with Alderman Bruce Ferguson to identify a room at the rear of the then Camden School of Arts (now the Camden Library) which Council could make available for such a use. The Council agreed and the Rotary Club adopted the establishment of the Camden Museum as its major project for 1969-70. This was under the Presidency of Noel Riordan, with Geoff McAleer as its hard working Community Services Director, supported by the entire membership of the Club. Other stalwarts of the Historical Society at that time included Owen and Nan Blattman, Miss Llewella Davies and Miss Nancy Freestone, among others.
The new Museum was opened before a large assembled crowd on 20th June 1970 by Major General Sir Denzil Macarthur-Onslow as Patron of the Historical Society. As the new museum neared its opening the word went out that items were needed for the Museum. Many items that are in the collection were donated at that time, including some of the “treasures’ of the Museum. Camden artist and Rotary Club member Alan D. Baker donated a beautiful oil painting “Camden From the Grove” which has pride of place in the Museum reception area today. Many families made donations of beautiful china, trophies, Edison phonographs, furniture, tools and household equipment.
The Museum is now reopened following the recent redevelopment of the Camden Library and the old Camden Fire Station. About $2.5 million has been spent by Camden Council and the NSW State Library to create a beautifully integrated Library and Heritage Complex by joining the Library, Museum and Fire Station with an elegant and light-filled galleria. The Museum now has much higher standards of fire-safety than previously, and also now has a lift to give easy access to its upper floor for disabled visitors. The Camden Area Family History Society also now has its room in the old Fire Station next to the Local Studies Room.
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