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Oswego County Historical Society to Host Lecture on History of former St. Francis Home Property

The Oswego County Historical Society will host a lecture on October 30 at 1:30 p.m. at Bishop's Commons. The program is entitled "The Evolutionary Story of Wildwood: A Grand Estate Orphanage, High School & More." The original building was located on the site of Bishop's Commons. Pictured is a postcard image of the Wildwood property during the period it was used as an orphanage called St. Francis Home.

The Oswego County Historical Society will host a lecture on October 30 at 1:30 p.m. at Bishop's Commons. The program is entitled "The Evolutionary Story of Wildwood: A Grand Estate Orphanage, High School & More." The original building was located on the site of Bishop's Commons. Pictured is a postcard image of the Wildwood property during the period it was used as an orphanage called St. Francis Home.

The Oswego County Historical Society will host a lecture on October 30 at 1:30 p.m. at Bishop's Commons. The program is entitled "The Evolutionary Story of Wildwood: A Grand Estate Orphanage, High School & More." The original building was located on the site of Bishop's Commons. Pictured is a postcard image of the Wildwood property during the period it was used as an orphanage called St. Francis Home.
The Oswego County Historical Society will host a lecture on October 30 at 1:30 p.m. at Bishop’s Commons. The program is entitled “The Evolutionary Story of Wildwood: A Grand Estate Orphanage, High School & More.” The original building was located on the site of Bishop’s Commons. Pictured is a postcard image of the Wildwood property during the period it was used as an orphanage called St. Francis Home.

OSWEGO — The Oswego County Historical Society will host the next lecture of the 2016 season on October 30 at 1:30 pm at Bishop’s Commons at 4 Burkle St., Oswego. The event is free and open to the public.

A program entitled “The Evolutionary Story  of Wildwood: a Grand Estate, Orphanage, High School & More” will be presented by historical society president, Justin White.

A PowerPoint presentation with images will focus on the former imposing Tuscan Villa known as Wildwood that was built as a private residence for prominent Judge Samuel Ludlow and his wife, Nancy.

In the late 19th century the house and property was acquired for the Sisters of St. Francis to be used as a convent along with new additions added for an orphanage called St. Francis Home.

“There is a fascinating history of the evolution of the land where the current Bishop’s Commons residential facility is located,” said White. “It was once the site of a private mansion in the mid-19th century, then turned into  a stage coach stop, and eventually an orphanage. An interesting timeline of the property will be the focus.”

After the orphanage closed the building was converted into the Oswego Catholic High School in 1953 until its closure in 1992.

The school was later renamed Bishop Cunningham High School.

The property on which the school was situated is now the site of Bishop’s Commons, an enriched living residence located at the corner of Syracuse Avenue and Burkle Street.

Bishop’s Commons will host the lecture in the main dining room and refreshments will be served.

The Oswego County Historical Society is a non-profit organization dedicated to the preservation and promotion of the rich history of the county. The society maintains and operates the Richardson-Bates House Museum, a historic landmark listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

The museum is open to the public Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 1-5 p.m, and other days by appointment.

For more information call the museum during regular hours at 343-1342.