This museum, housed in two Italian Renaissance–style mansions, is considered Cleveland's oldest cultural institution. It chronicles the history of the Western Reserve, a tract of land on the south shore of Lake Erie in northeast Ohio, and houses a library and a top-notch auto and aviation collection.
You can see how the rich—and their servants—lived at the History Museum. The museum includes the Chisholm Halle Costume Wing, one of the nation's top-ranked
collections, with garments from the late 1700s to the present. Guided tours of the Hay-McKinney Mansion are given every day between noon and 5.
Car Collectors magazine has called the Crawford Auto-Aviation Museum one of the top 10 collections in the nation. Nearly 200 antique, vintage, and classic automobiles, from Model T's and the first enclosed automobile to late-model Jaguars, are on display. There are models dating to 1895, when Cleveland was a center of car manufacturing. The aviation collection includes a 1912 Curtiss Hydroaeroplane.
One admission ticket covers all three museums at the complex.
The Library of the Western Reserve Historical Society has more than 6 million items, including prints and photographs, manuscripts and newspapers focusing primarily on Ohio's history. The library's vast collection of genealogical materials has made it one of the best and largest family-history research centers in the country. Tues.–Sat. 9–5.