A Gracious Host: Visiting The Gables Through the Years, a Special Exhibition from April 2nd-August 30th, by Ryan Conary, Marketing & Reservations Coordinator
The House of the Seven Gables is pleased to announce A Gracious Host: Visiting the Gables through the Years, an engaging exhibition showcasing the vibrant history of visitation at The House of the Seven Gables. Journey through the past, and experience the history of one of America’s most famous homes as it transformed from a residence into a cultural icon. Through informational panels and object based exhibits, guests will see the house as they never have before.
Beginning on April 2nd, 2015, A Gracious Host will focus on key moments in the history of tourism at The House of the Seven Gables. From the last residents of the house until today, this exhibition will enthrall visitors of all ages. For more than a century, The House of the Seven Gables has been one of the most iconic historic houses in America. Discover the beginnings of this historic treasure and how it came to be a popular tourist destination.
The beginnings of The House of the Seven Gables as a historic site date back before the museum’s founding in 1910. The story begins with the construction of the house by John Turner in 1668. Every house has a story worth preserving, and without the early builders and inhabitants, there would be no story to preserve. Fortunately, the story of the early residents is told on our guided tour, but leaves a gap between that of Susanna Ingersoll, who died in 1858, and Caroline Emmerton who acquired the house in 1908. During this 50 year period, the house was left to Susanna’s heir, Horace Connolly, was owned for 4 years by a series of absentee owners, and was purchased by the Upton family in 1883, who made it a home once again. The Upton’s recognized the historic importance of the house and invited guests to visit for a fee. They took advantage of the house’s storied past and began to generate greater interest in the mansion as a destination. While this was a step towards the house becoming a historical and cultural institution, it would not be until 1910 when Caroline Emmerton officially opened the house as a museum and base for her Settlement Association that The House of the Seven Gables would become the iconic structure that it remains today.
This post was written by Julie Arrison-Bishop