2023 Writing Series Dedicated to Edward Cooney By Michael Cooney
Edward Cooney was City Historian for over forty years, president of the Herkimer County Historical Society, and one of the founding members of the Little Falls Historical Society. He encouraged interest in local history for decades through frequent speaking engagements in schools and civic organizations and was the author of the Sesquicentennial History of Little Falls. He and a small group of activists, including his wife the artist Mary Louise Cooney, succeeded in having the Old Bank Building placed on the National Register of Historical sites, thus creating a permanent home for our local museum.
Many of the artifacts and records in the museum were collected by Ed and Mary Louise, including the trove of materials in the Cooney Archive, which has been a valuable resource on the City’s history for generations of researchers. The archive features over a hundred large scrapbooks containing newspaper clippings from as far back as the mid 1800s and continuing into the 1960s. Many rare and out-of-print histories are also in the collection, as well as Ed’s voluminous files on genealogy, veterans’ experiences in World War II and Korea, and local history. The work was begun by his father, Fire Chief Edward Cooney Sr., who had first sparked his son’s lifelong interest in local history.
The Society is currently working to digitize the scrapbooks and other records in the archive.
Edward Cooney’s son Michael Cooney is both a published author and a member of the Little Falls Historical Society.