Covid-19 Update September 15th, 2021 - We are safely open with Fall Hours: Historic Programming Fridays and Saturdays from 10am to 5pm, Visitor Center and Gift Shop Saturdays 10am to 5pm.

Additional programs/library/genealogy by appointment.

Grounds and Trails are open daily from Dawn to Dusk.

Please visit safely, and follow all health and safety guidelines.

For more information, please contact Matthew Wedd at or call at 717-328-2800 and leave a voicemail.

Board of Directors and Staff

Board of Directors Announcement

The Conococheague Institute is pleased to announce that it will now be accepting applications for its Board of Directors. We currently have 9 Board Officers and would like to add a few more to that roster.

2021 has been an incredible year of growth for the organization, with more education bookings, new staff and volunteers, more community collaborations and consistent visitation. Renewed support from our existing donors and new contributors has resulted in $87,751.85 in donations so far in 2021!

Thanks to a combined effort of the Board of Directors, Staff, Volunteers, Members, Donors and local business partners, CI is in a better position than ever to move forward as a leader in Historic and Natural tourism and public education in 2022. We hope you will want to be a part of CI's future!

The Conococheague Institute is a 501c3 Non Profit located outside Mercersburg, but with proximity to several large communities in the Tri-State. Our mission is to develop and foster awareness, understanding, and stewardship of the cultural and natural history of the Appalachian frontier of Pennsylvania, Maryland, and Virginia. 

We strive to achieve this by:
● Providing Educational Programs to visitors of all ages and backgrounds on subjects ranging from Historical and Cultural (Colonial Life, Native Influences, Medical Sciences throughout History) to Outdoor Nature and Science (Birding, Pollinators, Botany walks)
● Providing Professional Workshops to teach visitors hands-on skills such as Sewing, Carpentry, and Gardening
● Being a hub of Research: Our large Library and Genealogy department is an essential source, with over 9000 books

To learn more about CI, and see how we've been growing during 2021, please check out our Facebook and Youtube.

We are seeking the next generation of board leaders. While a passion for History or Nature education and public outreach is essential we are also particularly in need of the following skills:

● Finance – particularly development of long-range planning and budget management
● Historic Preservation – With Historic Structures on-site that span more than two centuries
● Fund Development / Major Gifts Solicitations -- CI maintains its mission to serve the community through Grants, Donations, and bequests. Leadership with the knowledge and skillset to further those goals are a major asset
● Strong relationship capital – connections with philanthropic leaders and influencers, willingness to help make connections in these arenas on CI's behalf

Requirements for CI Board Membership include:

  • Have an active Conococheague Institute Membership (Not currently a Member? Not to worry! If you're interested, please apply, and don't forget to become a member or renew your past membership)
  • An Interest in helping advance the mission of Conococheague Institute
  • Ability to identify specific area(s) of contribution, such as grow and diversify membership, foster community relationships, secure donors, expand CI financial management strength, etc.

If you are interested in taking a leadership role in the future development of CI as a Board Member please send an email to or mail it to us at our standard mailing address. Please include the following:

  • A resume - While Professional resumes are the norm, please include any other interests, volunteering, or hobbies that may pertain to CI's mission
  • A cover letter - While resumes may show the accomplishments of an individual, Cover Letters will allow us to see the personal passion that a potential Board Member can bring to CI. Whether its History, Community building, Nature, or a focused organized Business mindset, there are no limits to the ways skills can be applied to better CI

These will be sent to the Board Nominating Committee (consisting of 3 current Board Members) for evaluation and a Member of the Nominating Committee will be in contact with you to confirm your interest, and to solicit any further information needed.

From there it will be moved to General Member voting and acceptance at a future Members Meeting in October 2021.

We want to have the required time to properly evaluate Board Candidates. So please, show your Zeal by applying as soon as possible.

Thank you for your support of the Conococheague Institute.

Board of Directors

Elizabeth P. Lillard “Betsey", President

Chuck Holland, Vice President

Josh Faust, Treasurer

Robert Schwartz, Secretary

Will Sheppard

Carol Zehosky

Eric Bryan

Ellen Kinzer

Leighton Wolfe

Dr. John C. Stauffer, Founder and President Emeritus


Matthew Wedd
Executive Director

Jacob Davis
Historic Warden and Programming Lead

Advisory Board

Avery Cook

Tom Finucane

Dr. Doris Armstrong-Goldman

Gay Buchanan

Martha E. Stauffer, MD

Roger Swartz