Mattapoisett Museum Opens Summer Exhibit

The Mattapoisett Historical Society unveiled its new summer exhibit on Thursday, June 28.  “Mattapoisett: A Place of Rest,” is a display that focuses on the historical working and leisure classes of the town.

“It starts with information on the Native Americans, who were here 1000 years or more before the white man,” said Historical Society president Seth Mendell.

From there, the display features objects from the town’s ship building days, including a miniature model of a seaweed fort, which were constructed as hidden protection against enemies who may be approaching from the ocean.

“For a long time, the British navy was trying to destroy the shipyards of Mattapoisett,” Mendell said.  There are several antique tools and model ships on display in the museum, including a replica of the final whaling ship constructed in Mattapoisett, The Wanderer.

Part of the exhibit is dedicated to the beach communities that helped build Mattapoisett’s reputation as a vacation spot.  Old photographs and period bathing suits constitute part of the display, as well as histories on local hangouts like Pico Beach and Grand Beach.  Other artifacts include old furniture and beach accessories, like ladies’ fans.

The final part of the display commemorates modern-day Mattapoisett by highlighting some of the trendy activities of today’s outdoor enthusiasts.  “Of course, we wind surf today, so we have a board here.  And the harbor is always full of sailing cruisers when it’s nice out,” Mendell said.

The exhibit at the Mattapoisett Historical Museum on Church Street runs until August 30, 2012.  The museum is open from Wednesday to Saturday, 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm and viewings are held by appointment only.

By Eric Tripoli

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