National Heritage Museum – Lexington, Massachusetts

National Heritage Museum – Lexington, Massachusetts

Are you interested in American History?  Do you have an interest in following the development of the mind set and the paperwork of those that chose to move forward with the American Revolution to free this country from the grips of a foreign monarchy?  You can follow the path of those before with a visit to the National Heritage Museum in Lexington, where the American Revolution was born.

The Museum houses many different exhibits and displays for you to enjoy. One of the most interesting for those following the birth of the Revolution is the "Sowing the Seeds of Liberty: Lexington & the American Revolution" exhibit.  This is a new long-term installation at the Museum designed to stimulate new ways of thinking about the battle of Lexington on April 19, 1775.  Much of the exhibit focuses on two main Lexington leaders, John Parker and Jonas Clarke.  Although they were instrumental they were certainly not alone.  The entire community was involved in the fight for freedom.

Lexington was comprised of farmers in 1774.  They may have done other things too, but all were tied to the land.  Along with this every man was a "citizen soldier."  In this display you will see artifacts relating to farming, especially dairy farming, and how a farmer transforms into a solider and then back again to a farmer.

You will be introduced to family life in the 1770’s through the Loring family who share their kitchen table with you.  In the family there were five women, two men, and a baby.  You will learn about the tasks the girls undertook such as making cheese and butter, cooking, cleaning and producing wool.  Visit with them and learn their stories.

The different displays in this exhibit will take you to the roots of the revolution and the history of the different protests that occurred long before the war.  You will learn about Paul Revere and find that he was a lot more than just the guy that did the "midnight ride."

There is also a display where you can try to make furniture like they did in those days.  You will also be taken to the Meeting House where political matters as well as spiritual matters were discussed.  Here you will feel the transformation from a place of town business to a house of worship.  This is just part of the experiences you can have in this display area.

The Museum has a wide range of subjects for you to familiarize yourself with while there.  There are the traditional stories on Paul Revere, George Washington and the American Revolution to non-traditional stories such as Route 66, diners, neon signs or even doing laundry in America.  The Museum has as many as 18 changing exhibitions each year.  They are placed in one of the six versatile galleries for your pleasure.

Van Gorden-Williams Library and Archives is available for you to do research on this time table in history.  It preserves Masonic and fraternal history in many formats as well as other major collections of American history.  The Van Gordon-Williams Library and Archives has a collection of over 60,000 volumes, including 1,600 periodical titles.  You can use the materials in the library’s reading room where staff members are always willing to help you. 

Library and Archives:
as of June 1, 2009                                                                                                  
10am – 4:30pm
Tuesday – Friday
and the 1st and 3rd Saturday of each month.
Closed Sunday, Monday, and some Saturdays

Founded by the Scottish Rite Masons of the Northern Jurisdiction of the United States as a gift to the nation on our country’s bicentennial.

National Heritage Museum
33 Marrett Road
Lexington, MA 02421

Phone: (781) 861-6559


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