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Mission Statement


The Victorian Preservation Center of Oakland/ Cohen Bray House and its historic garden, Oak Tree Farm, is a community resource for establishing and maintaining connections between the past and the present. By sharing its historical collections and grounds with our diverse community of neighbors, local schools, higher learning institutions, and historic preservationists, we allow people to find similarities and bridge differences to create vibrant, healthy communities.



In carrying out our mission we strive:


  • To play a vital role in the ongoing intellectual and cultural life of our community by maintaining close partnerships with existing local health centers and community organizations;

  • To  become more sustainable by developing a learning and training center in the  buildings in the back, for people who want to take workshops to learn the specific building trades associated with preservation and climate resiliency for existing buildings, which goes hand-in-hand with architectural preservation; 

  • To share our garden and back buildings with the local community as a community gathering space;

  • To serve as a community resource for local schools by offering tours of the house and grounds that enhance California State Curriculum;

  • To use the garden as a resource for teaching environmental education and sustainable urban agriculture;

  • To make the house and its collections available to visitors, researchers, and museum study programs;

  • To maintain and preserve the buildings and grounds known as the Cohen Bray House (built in 1884 for Alfred H. Cohen and Emma Bray);

  • To preserve the house’s collections of archival documents, photographs, furnishings, textiles, and other objects according to the highest attainable professional standards;

  • To foster appreciation of historic preservation activities, historic architecture, and local history;

  • To operate as a not-for-profit study center according to the highest ethical and professional standards.

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