The Falmouth Museums on the Green contain a treasure trove of stories and artifacts that tell the story of the town of Falmouth, Massachusetts. Overlooking Falmouth Village Green – where members of the Colonial militia practiced in the 1700s and sea captains built their homes – are two 18th-century houses.
They display period furniture, fine art, textiles and rotating exhibits that provide a glimpse into the town’s rich historic past.
The museum experience includes:
- The Museum Visitor Centeris located in the rustic Hallett Barn, which is wheelchair-accessible. Tour tickets are available here. Activities are provided to visitors which introduce the town and the museums, illustrating the connection between our past and the present.
- Guided Walking tours of Falmouthare given on Tuesday and Thursday mornings at 10 am during the visitation season (weather permitting) and cost $ 5 each. The Whaling Wives Gift Shop is also located in the Visitors Center.
- The CulturalCenter where a variety of public programs, lectures and events for both children and adults are hosted. Opened in December 2012, it is also available for private rentals.
- The c.1790 Francis Wicks Houseis an example of what life was like for a physician in a Federalist-era home. Guided tours are provided and visitors can learn about life in Falmouth by viewing the oldest home on the Town Green and seeing furnishings from the period.
- The c.1730 Conant Houseis where the offices of the Historical Society are located as well as where exhibitions are held. Our Research Library is also in the Conant House. In 2015, an exhibit on “Circa 1870-Victorian Life in Falmouth” is on display.
The Falmouth Garden Club maintains three delightful gardens on the Museum grounds — a Colonial-style flower garden, an herb garden and a Memorial Park. Visitors are welcome to picnic in the gazebo or stroll the gardens during daylight hours year-round.
Here are some of the exhibitions planned for the 2015 visitation season:
Circa 1870-The Victorian Age in Falmouth
With the arrival of rail travel to Falmouth in the 1870s, the town experienced a jump in tourism. Wealthy Bostonians and New Yorkers flooded to Cape Cod for the scenery and the fresh air. The Victorian era marks the beginnings of Falmouth’s present day role as a summer holiday destination. Featuring everything from hair crimpers to bloomers, this exhibition highlights items from the Museum’s vast Victorian collection featuring exquisite clothing, furniture, and decorative items.
Voice of the Tide: The Life and Times of Katharine Lee Bates
Falmouth’s most famous daughter, Katharine Lee Bates, is most well known for her poem “America the Beautiful”. Through ephemera, childhood writings, photographs and more, this exhibit provides an introduction to the woman behind the poem–a spunky, passionate, patriotic intellectual. In her life as a writer, editor and teacher at Wellesley College, she carved out her own path–one that was surprising and unorthodox for a woman of her time.
Falmouth was a whaling port from 1820 to 1864. During that period, thirteen whaleships sailed from Falmouth for at least 51 voyages. Whaling dominated the town’s economy for much of the 19th century, shifting it away from a predominantly agricultural economy. This exhibition celebrates Falmouth’s whaling men and women with their souvenirs and tales of adventure & exotic places.