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Paradise of Fruit and Flower: Armstrong Nursery and the 20th Century Garden Ideal

JS Armstrong J.S. Armstrong in his home garden   

Photo by Clint Bryant. Courtesy of Museum of History and Art, Ontario

John S. Armstrong lived until a few months before his one-hundredth birthday in 1965.  Arriving in the Model Colony of Ontario, California in 1889 with only twenty-three dollars to his name, Armstrong eventually created an enterprise that tapped into California’s bountiful landscape, established him as world famous nurseyman, and earned Ontario international recognition.


The Paradise of Fruit and Flower exhibit will be on display for the next year in the museum’s Carlson Room, dedicated to local history topics.  This exhibit was funded in part through a grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services.


A view of the Road Ways gallery

Road Ways

This is an interpretive, humanities-based exhibition that examines the impact of the road on American life and culture.

Start by learning about America’s fascination with traveling the open road. Or discover the roots of the road, how people have traveled “roads” long before cars did. Highlights include Ontario’s Euclid Avenue, Holt Boulevard and historic Route 66. Be sure to pick up a road map and travel through the “roadscape” of Ontario and beyond. You’ll find out why Road Ways is the world’s largest exhibit.

Road Ways was developed by the museum with the assistance of humanities scholars, contracted curators and exhibit designers and local advisors. Exhibition development, installation and associated publications were made possible in part by the National Endowment for the Humanities, expanding our understanding of the world.

Gem of the Foothills 3Gem of the Foothills

This exhibit explores the unique history of Ontario—it’s founding, transitions, people and organizations.

Explore Ontario from its roots beginning with the Native Peoples and Californio Rancheros to its founding by George Chaffey. Discover why it has been called both a “Model Colony” and the “Gem of the Foothills.”

Gem of the Foothills Book CoverThe book, Ontario The Gem of the Foothills by Michael L. Rounds, traces Ontario history from the Native American era to the present day. Many historic images from the museum’s collections are published here for the first time.

This interpretive history about our community is for sale in the museum store.

Gem of the Foothills 1 Gem of the Foothills 2
View of the Gem of the Foothills galleries.

Last updated: 2/24/2014 5:07:08 PM