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Oneida Community Mansion House

170 Kenwood Avenue
Oneida, New York

Phone: 315-363-0745 --

Statement of Purpose:

Using its historic site and collections, the non-profit Oneida Community Mansion House shares the story of the Oneida Community – one of the most radical and successful of the 19th century social experiments – to explore pressing social issues that still confront audiences today.



   The 93,000 square foot Oneida Community Mansion House built in stages between 1862 and 1914, was the home of the 19th century utopian Oneida Community, founded in 1848 by John Humphrey Noyes as a communitarian experiment.  For thirty three years, the religiously-based Perfectionist Community challenged contemporary social views on property ownership, gender roles, child rearing, monogamous marriage, and work.  From their insistence on lifelong learning and vigorous health, the abandonment of the self for the good of the whole, they developed a work ethic and well of industriousness so deep it flowed into one of the most impressive manufacturing companies of the 20th century.

    Although growing to more than 300 members at its peak, the Community succumbed to external and internal pressures, disbanded, and formed a joint-stock corporation, Oneida Community Ltd., in 1881.  Eventually changing its name to Oneida Ltd., the company achieved world-wide recognition for the silverware it produced in Sherrill, NY.

    The Oneida Community Mansion House is a National Historic Landmark that houses a museum with permanent and changing exhibitions, residential apartments, overnight lodging, a gift shop, Kenwood and Vine restaurant, and banquet and meeting space.  The wheelchair accessible site is open 365 days a year, excluding major holidays.  A variety of activities are available for children and adults including guided and self-guided tours, workshops, lectures, concerts, and other special events.

    Tours reveal an interior key to Community life such as the Big Hall with its exquisite trompe l’oeil ceiling; the Upper Sitting Room that most defined their idea of home; the Community Library where lifelong education was encouraged and more than 100 newspapers, magazines and journals subscribed; and the Vestibule and its Cabinet of Curiosities.

    The property encompasses 200 acres including the Oneida Community Cemetery, historic gardens and grounds, and the country's first corporate golf course. A Black Walnut tree and a Tulip tree are New York State champions.

Permanent Exhibits:

Orientation Exhibit . Exhibition features photographs, text, artifacts, a timeline and more to provide visitors with a thorough introduction to the Oneida Community prior to touring the Mansion House.  

The Braidings of Jessie Catherine Kinsley. This permanent exhibit traces the roots of Kinsley’s art to childhood experience with textile work in the Oneida Community and to formal art training from Kenneth Hayes Miller, an influential figure in twentieth-century American art. The presentation featuring exquisite silk braidings and paintings explores Kinsley's themes and the significance of her achievement. What began as rug decoration evolved, during the 1910s, into a new painterly art form and her fusion of tapestry and illustrated manuscript exemplified the American Craftsman aesthetic (ca 1910-1925). (Suggested donation $2)

Oneida Game Traps, 1852-1925: The Edward J. Knobloch Collection. A permanent exhibit featuring a representative selection of traps sold by the Oneida company under the names Newhouse and Victor and still considered the world's best. The exhibit contains more than fifty types of traps and illustrates how local trap-making began with the Oneida Community (1848-1880), a famous experiment in utopian living.

Period Rooms include the Oneida Community Library, the Upper Sitting Room, the Nursery Kitchen, and a woman’s Sleeping Room.  

Also period rooms; photo exhibits; and art events.


Open year-round except major holidays.


Museum is wheelchair accessible 
Elementary School/Camp/Scout Program, by reservation

Regularly scheduled guided tours are conducted Wednesday – Saturday, 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., and Sunday, 2 p.m. Groups of eight or more are welcome by reservation,
315-363-0745.  Self-guided tours with audio narration may be taken during business hours.

New York State Thruway (90) from the West:  

Take Verona Exit No. 33 and turn left onto Route 365 (West).

Follow it to Route 5.  Turn left onto Route 5 East.

At the first light - West Hamilton Sherrill - turn right.

Turn right at the next light - Sherrill Rd.

When you cross over Oneida Creek, Sherrill Rd. becomes Kenwood Ave.

You will pass large stone Oneida Ltd. Administration Building on your left.

Look for the circular drive entry to the Oneida Community Mansion House on your right.

Parking is available on the driveway between signs.

New York State Thruway (90) from the East:  

Turn onto Route 365 West and follow to Route 5.

Turn left onto Route 5 East and follow the directions above.

For more information (315)363-0745 or visit the web site:

Misc Comments:

The Oneida Community Mansion House is available for overnight lodging, weddings, meeting, and banquets. 

The Oneida Community Mansion House is also the location for Kenwood and Vine farm to fork restaurant.  Menu and hours are available at


John Humphrey Noyes

Photo Courtesy:

Oneida Community Mansion House

Photo Courtesy:

Key Personnel:

Patricia A. Hoffman, Executive Director
• Anthony Wonderley, Curator
• Gwendolyn Smith, Business Manager
• Michael Colmey, Building and Grounds Director 

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