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Massachusetts Travel Blog

New Exhibitions at Memorial Hall Museum

Thursday, June 16th, 2016

Memorial Hall Museum in Deerfield, MAThe Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association was founded in Deerfield, Massachusetts in 1870 as the very first historical society in Western Massachusetts. It is a charming three-storied building with 19 rooms of art, culture and history, all housed in the original 1798 Deerfield Academy building, acquired by antiquarian and historian George Sheldon to house the collection of Deerfield and area memorabilia he had been assiduously amassing.

Memorial Hall Museum and its gift shop are open June 1 to October 30, Tuesday through Sunday, 11 am–4:30 pm. Admission is $6 for adults; $3 for youth and students 6-21.

There are some wonderful new exhibitions open for the season, and this museum with its beautiful gardens is a delightful and special sidebar visit to the museum houses of Historic Deerfield.

MUSIC ROOM   In celebration of the 100th anniversary of Memorial Hall Museum’s 1916 wing, the Music Room has been renovated and reinstalled with three centuries of musical instruments, furniture, and artwork. Franklin County’s first piano, Hadley chests, and portraits, will be featured in this special exhibition.

CHILDREN OF DEERFIELD: PHOTOGRAPHS BY FRANCES AND MARY ALLEN  Celebrated in 1901 as the “foremost women photographers in America”, Frances and Mary Allen’s photographs from 1885 to 1915 provide a unique glimpse of childhood in rural New England.  This exhibition features idyllic photographs of children on the farm, at play, or in costume in old Deerfield.

RELICS AND CURIOSITIES IN MEMORIAL HALL  Conch shells used for dinner horns? Wreaths made from human hair? Weapons made with sharks’ teeth? Out-of-the-ordinary curios and keepsakes are featured in an exhibition with an emphasis on intriguing narratives and “otherness.”  This exhibition features rarely seen relics and curiosities gathered and preserved in Memorial Hall since 1799.

Join us at Deerfield Inn and explore this historic treasure for yourself!

Another Reason to Visit Deerfield – Memorial Hall Museum

Wednesday, July 2nd, 2014

The oldest museum association in the country is opening again for the season. Located right here in Deerfield on Memorial Street, this three-story building, founded in 1870, in the original 1798 Deerfield Academy building, is filled with remarkable objects relating directly to Deerfield and its immediate environs. The native Pocumtuck people, Eastern European immigrants, and the African American experience are interpreted and presented here. Deerfield’s Arts & Crafts Movement, quilts, Hadley chests, paintings, photographs, tombstones, the famous 1704 hatchet-scarred door from the Sheldon house, as well as Bangwell Putt, the oldest-known rag doll in America who survived for so long partly because she was handled very gently by the little blind Clarissa Field who owned her, are just some of the things here to tell their stories. The impact of the continuum of history is very real and engaging in this special place which so lovingly preserves and documents Deerfield’s past. We invite you to stay with us at the Deerfield Inn when you visit this remarkable piece of history.

Open Tuesdays through Sundays, June through October (closed Mondays).

Hours: 11:00 am – 4:30 pm

Admission is $6 for adults, $3 for ages 6-21, and the little museum shop has some special pieces by area artisans.

And of course set aside plenty of time to visit Historic Deerfield and its absorbing exhibitions in the Flynt Center.

Memorial Hall Museum