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About OrCHArD

The Orleans County Historical Archives Database is a collection of digitized materials from the Orleans County Department of History. Showcasing significant documents and photographs, the focus of this site is to offer interpretations of those local collections in a way that connects them to larger historical subjects. OrCHArD will feature regular digital exhibitions that call attention to significant historical topics that explore the intersections of race, gender, and class in order to add deeper meaning to people, places, and events in Orleans County.

The site is hosted by Matthew Ballard, County Historian, as a donation to the residents of Orleans County.


Matthew R. Ballard, MLS

34 East Park Street
Albion, New York
Phone: (585) 589-4174
E-mail: Matt.Ballard@orleanscountyny.gov

M.A. American History, anticipated 2019 - SUNY College at Brockport, Brockport NY
M.L.S. Academic Librarianship, 2012 - SUNY University at Buffalo, Buffalo NY
B.S. History, 2010 - SUNY College at Brockport, Brockport NY

A native of Albion, Matthew graduated from Albion High School in 2006 and enrolled at SUNY The College at Brockport in 2007. Focusing his studies in American History during the era of National Expansion and Reform (1815-1880), he has studied a broad range of local subjects including Cobblestone Masonry and Polish Immigration; completing his B.S. in History in 2010. In 2012, he earned his Master of Library Studies (M.L.S.) from the University at Buffalo where he studied academic librarianship and special collections management. He is currently pursuing a Master of Arts in American History with a concentration in Archival Management from SUNY The College at Brockport.

Matthew has over ten years of experience in local history and preservation efforts. Currently, he serves as treasurer of the Orleans County Genealogical Society and in the past has served as Director/Curator of the Cobblestone Society and Museum, president of the Cobblestone Society and Museum, and chairman of the Historic Preservation Commission in Albion. He also hosts the Albion Polonia website, which serves as a historical and genealogical resource for area researchers interested in the Polish communities of Albion and Medina. Matthew received the Orleans County Heritage Hero Award in 2014 as part of the inaugural class of inductees for his work in preserving the history of St. Mary's Assumption Church in Albion. In 2017 he received the SUNY College at Brockport Recent Alumnus Award for professional achievement and dedication to community service.

In addition to his responsibilities as County Historian, he is the Director of Library Services at Roberts Wesleyan College with assistant faculty rank, where he serves as the faculty liaison to the Schools of Arts & Humanities, Business, and Nursing; he is also a member of the Rochester Regional Library Council's Advisory Committee.