This 1878 Victorian mansion was built as a family home for Asahel Bush, II and his four children. Mr. Bush was a prominent businessman in Salem, the founder of the Oregon Statesman newspaper and the Ladd and Bush Bank. The home is furnished as it was during the lifetime of Bush's daughter, Miss Sally, who lived here from 1878 until her death in 1946. After the death of Sally's brother, A. N. Bush, in 1953, the house became the property of the City of Salem. The home features original wallpapers, art objects and an array of antique furniture.
The Conservatory: The Bush House Museum is located in Bush's Pasture Park. The grounds feature a rose garden and Bush family's conservatory which contains heritage plants reflecting Miss Sally's love of nature. The gardens are always open to visitors and the conservatory is open daily, 9:00 am to 3:30 pm.
For those interested in gardens: The Lord and Schryver Conservancy, a community-based non-profit organization partnered with the Salem Parks Foundation and affliliated with Garden Conservancy, sponsors local garden projects to preserve and interpret the legacy of these two Salem landscape architects. You can help by calliing (503) 588 2410 for information and volunteer opportunities.
The Barn: When Mr. Bush purchased the property from David Leslie in 1860, it included a house and barn. The house was moved so the Bush house could be built, but the barn remained as a vital part of the Bush farm. After a fire in the 1960s, the barn was rebuilt and remodeled, although it retained its original exterior appearance and site "footprint". It now contains art galleries, a shop, and the offices of Salem Art Association.
Bush House Museum Hours:
May to September - 12:00 to 5:00 pm, Tuesday through Sunday
October to December, March and April - 2:00 to 5:00 pm, Tuesday through Sunday
The Museum is closed in January and February
Admission tickets are available at Bush Barn:
Adults - $4
Students & Seniors - $3
Children 6–12 - $2
Admission is free to Members of Salem Art Association.
Organized and scheduled school field trips are admitted at no charge. Teachers should contact Bush House Museum for more information.
A parking lot on Mission Street is free, but prepare for a walk up the hill to the house. There is another, smaller parking area between Bush House and Bush Barn, entering off High Street.
When You Are Here:
A tour of the Bush House Museum is an opportunity to step back in time, to see to see how a wealthy Salem family lived and to make the acquaintance of a remarkable lady, Miss Sally Bush. The 100-acre park that once operated as the Bush family farm is now a popular year-around recreation site for Salem familes. The park hosts the annual Salem Art Fair & Festival each July.
December 5: Open House 1-5 pm
Current events at Bush Barn Art Center depicting Salem history or its artists will be listed here. You may also refer to the Salem Art Association website (above).
To Learn More:
photos.salemhistory.org has a collection of photographs taken by Sally and her brother A.N. Bush. Use “Search all collections” and the subject Bush.
The two recent issues of Historic Marion, available at Marion County Historical Society, have articles with information about the Bush family:
Volume 41, No. 3, "Ladies of the Bush Family"
Volume 43, No. 3, "The Children of Piety Hill"