Sandra Scott Travels: Lyons Falls – A Pharmacy Museum and Much More

Lyons Falls Pharmacy and historical museum.

Lyons Falls Pharmacy and historical museum.

Last week I asked: Where is there a pharmacy museum?

In Lyons Falls, New York.

Lyons Falls Pharmacy and historical museum.
Lyons Falls Pharmacy and historical museum.

John and I went on another summer outing to places seldom visited.

This time to Lyons Falls in Lewis County.

It turned out to be more interesting than I could have imagined.

At one time it was a vibrant community centered around the Black River Canal and the Lyons Falls Paper and Pulp Mill.

Lyons Falls was the where the Black River Canal terminated.

Lyons Falls
Lyons Falls

Travel on the canal ended in 1900.

The mill was operational from 1895 to 2001; the buildings are being torn down.

Lyons Falls had one of the few three-way or Y-shaped bridges in the world.

Too bad it wasn’t saved and repurposed as a pedestrian walkway; it could have become a tourist attraction.

It was torn down in 1965 but there is a memorial in memory of the bridge.

Three-way (Y-shaped) bridge memorial.
Three-way (Y-shaped) bridge memorial.

It is near an area where the water can be accessed and there are good views of the waterfalls that powered the paper mill.

However, there are other things in the small town of interest.

In back of the Lyons Falls Pharmacy is a pharmacy and historical museum.

The first pharmacy opened in 1899 in a different location but the bottles and artifacts on display reflect an early pharmacy with health and beauty aids dating back to the 1900s.

A restored historic cannon
A restored historic cannon

Adjacent to the pharmacy display there are historical displays detailing the history of the area including a unique handmade tool chest from the 1800s that was owned by Geordias Gould.

The Goulds were one of the earliest settlers and owners of the Gould Paper Mill.

The town is also home to the Storms-Bailey Home Museum parts of which are set up like an early home.

Storms-Bailey Home Museum
Storms-Bailey Home Museum

The kitchen has an old kitchen stove and a Hoosier cabinet.

Upstairs there is an eclectic collection of artifacts.

Drive through the streets of the village and you will see many beautiful old homes including the 1902 Romanesque Gould Mansion.

The house is a private residence so it is not open to the public but next to it is what was once the Gould’s carriage house; it is now a library.

Historic library
Historic library

Both are on the National Register of Historic Places.

The library is worth a stop to see the historic cannon and an amazing diorama made by fourth graders and a 1910 carriage.

Take note of the floor beneath the carriage and the ceiling above.

It is a lift that takes carriages up to the second level.


We had packed a lunch so headed to Brantingham Lake in search of a place to eat it.

Fun on Brantingham Lake
Fun on Brantingham Lake

We noticed Camp Aldergate with picnic benches scenically perched on the rise above the lake.

We asked for permission to eat there.

The only other person was a lady who recognized us.

What a memory!

We were on the same train coming up from NYC in April.

At one time my relatives lived in nearby Glenfield where my father’s family owned the Central Hotel, so we decided to check it out.

I was surprised at how busy it was.

the Central Hotel
The Central Hotel

Obviously it is the best place to eat in the area.

I remember staying at the hotel with my cousins many years ago.

And I stayed there again in one of their great apartments.

It was excellent with two bedrooms, a kitchen, bathroom and a large L-shaped living area.

It could accommodate four to eight people.

It is mainly used by snowmobilers.

It was a great find.

Travel Trivia Tease™: What is there to do in Croghan, NY?

Look for the answer next week.

Sandra and her husband, John, have been exploring the world for decades, always on the lookout for something new and unique to experience. We have sailed down the Nile for a week on a felucca, stayed with the Pesch Indians in La Mosquitia, visited schools in a variety of countries, and — to add balance to our life — stayed at some of the most luxurious hotels in the world. Let the fun continue!