This 2021 exhibit explores the archaeology associated with the earliest indigenous settlements on Cape Cod. With the Public Archaeology Laboratory in Pawtucket, RI, the museum has developed a display on Native American archaeological sites, ranging from approximately 12,000 to 450 years ago, along with artifacts and images to tell us more about the culture of the earliest inhabitants of our region well before the Mayflower landing in 1620.
This 2018 exhibit, Man and Mollusk: A History of Shellfishing on Cape Cod, showed the many kinds of shellfish found in our waters and the vintage tools that were used to gather them, as well as the use of quahog shells by the Wampanoag Indians to present-day oyster farming by local fishermen.
Thanks to Tom Chilton and Bob Grosch for curating this exhibit.
Each fall over the last several years an exhibit of Drawings from Nature have appeared at the Museum. The artists are all students of Julia S. Child of Woods Hole and are all adult year-round residents of Woods Hole and Falmouth.
Discover how Cape Cod fishermen travelled close to shore and far from land before the days of electronic devices. The exhibit features reproductions and an original of large, century-old maritime charts from the archives of the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution.
A list of exhibits at our Museum over the years. The first exhibit of the Woods Hole Historical Museum was held in 1974 in Endeavor House on School Street. The following year, in 1975, an exhibit was held at Fisher House on Church Street.
Electric home refrigerators didn't begin to replace home ice boxes until the 1920s and to keep things in those ice boxes cold, one needed ice. Here in the northeast, much of that ice was cut from ponds that froze over in the winter. The ice was cut and then stacked in ice houses to be used throughout the year. During summer of 2015 one of the exhibits at the Woods Hole Historical Museum told the story of the ice and the ice houses that were found around the shores of many of the ponds in Falmouth. Much of what was on display in that exhibit is now online and can be viewed by clicking here.
Franklin Gifford (1854-1936), a long-time resident of Woods Hole, filled his retirement making paintings of local scenes that he remembered or reconstructed. Twenty or so of Gifford's paintings now hang on the walls of the Woods Hole Public Library. Some of the paintings depict battles or famous historical events, but many (like the paint of eeling shown here) show scenes of village life in Woods Hole in the 1800s and capture a sense of what that life was like.
During the summer of 2013, the Museum hosted an exhibit honoring the Marine Biological Laboratory for 125 years in Woods Hole.
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