Remarkable historical artifacts from the age of the Pilgrims
A museum of extraordinary historical value, Pilgrim Hall’s mission is to protect, foster, and teach America’s important heritage. Built in 1824 in the center of Plymouth, this is the nation’s oldest continuously operating public museum. Long before the Pilgrims, however, this land belonged to the Wampanoag peoples for more than 10,000 years and the story of their relationship with colonial peoples is here. You’ll see a remarkable collection of Pilgrim possessions, paintings and artifacts. William Bradford’s Bible is here, as is Myles Standish’s sword and the earliest sampler made in America, embroidered by his teenage daughter. You’ll find also the only portrait painted from life of a Pilgrim and the cradle that was made for New England’s very first–born.
New Bedford Whaling Museum
18 Johnny Cake HillNew Bedford, MA, 02740Phone: 508-997-0046
The New Bedford Whaling Museum houses the world's most comprehensive collection of whaling and maritime artifacts. Climb aboard the world's largest ship model, the 89-foot bark Lagoda, and view the 66-foot skeleton of a rare blue whale.
Hours: October-April, Tuesday-Saturday, 9 a.m.-4 p.m.; Sunday, 11 a.m.-4 p.m.; May-September, daily, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.; open holiday Mondays; closed Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's Day.
Admission: General, $14; seniors, $12; students, $9; children, $6.
33 William StreetNew Bedford, MAPhone: 508-996-4095
Covering 13 city blocks, a Visitor Center and many other buildings in downtown New Bedford, this park, operated by the National Park Service, preserves the history of 19th-20th century whaling industry, which had its epicenter in this old seafaring town. The park also tells stories of global immigration, Underground Railroad, women’s history, cultural diversity, architecture, and art. Here, you can see scenes like the Seamen’s Bethel, places depicted in Herman Melville’s classic novel “Moby-Dick.”
Hours: April 1 to December 31, daily, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.; January 1 to March 31, closed Mondays and Tuesdays
Old Colony and Fall River Railroad Museum
Battleship CoveFall River, MA, 02720Phone: 508-674-9340
Exhibits in this museum center on the history of railroading in the Fall River area and Southern New England. Train cars filled with extensive collection of railroad memorabilia.
Hours: Call ahead for hours of operation and admission charge.
Nineteenth-century Life Saving Station facing Boston Light; working rescue apparatus; exhibits, shipwreck lore, and kid's loft.
Hours: Year-round, Monday, Wednesday, Friday, 10 a.m.-1 p.m.; July-October, also open weekends, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Additional hours and guided tours available by appointment
Admission: Adults, $5; seniors, $3; children 18 and younger, free.
Children's Museum in Easton
The Old Fire Station, 9 Sullivan AvenueNorth Easton, MA, 02356Phone: 508-230-3789
Located in the historic Old Fire Station in North Easton, the Children's Museum of Easton offers hands-on experience to stimulate curiosity and motivate learning. Three floors of interactive exhibits and over 100 programs allow kids to explore the world around them. Primarily for children age 1 to 8.
Hours: Tuesday-Friday, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday, noon-5 p.m.; closed most Mondays; call ahead for holidays or school vacation hours
Admission: $7.50 per person; children under 1 admitted for free.
New Bedford Fire Museum
868 Pleasant Street - New BedfordNew Bedford, MA, 02740Phone: 508-991-6124
Restored fire trucks and interactive exhibits highlight this museum of firefighting, firefighters and their tools.
Hours: Call ahead for visiting hours.