Atwood Museum - Home of the Chatham Historical Society

347 Stage Harbor Road, Chatham, MA 02633, Chatham, MA 02633 - United States




Experience New England coastal life through the eyes of the Atwood Museum! This museum is a vibrant institution showcasing 11 galleries in several buildings, hosting special events and compelling local speakers, and providing research opportunities.

Exhibits include the preserved Captain Joseph Atwood House, dating from the 1750s, the Life Saving Services exhibit, Joseph C. Lincoln Room, the Fisheries Gallery, the Shell Room, The Mural Barn, and this season's 3 new exhibits: Main Street Cape Cod, Chatham Digs, and Flight Into Chatham: The 100th Anniversary of the First Transatlantic Flight and so much more. There is truly something for everyone!


The Old House:

The Old House is the original Atwood house built in the 1750s by Captain Joseph Atwood. The house remained in the Atwood family until the 1920s when the Chatham Historical Society was formed and purchased the building. Explore with a docent or audio guide, the seven rooms on the ground floor containing objects from the 1700’s – 1900’s showing three centuries of family life on Cape Cod. An additional room, Marjorie’s kitchen was added in the 1830s.

The Main Exhibit Gallery:

The Main Exhibit Gallery is a rotating gallery highlighting the rich history of Chatham and Cape Cod.

Experience the history of Cape Cod through our newest exhibit, Main Street Cape Cod. In collaboration with 22 museums and historical societies across Cape Cod, the Atwood House & Museum invites you to journey the historic main streets of the each town.

The Fishing Gallery:

This gallery highlights the four kinds of commercial fishing most prominent in this area: line fishing, weir or trap fishing, shell fishing and lobstering.

The Joseph A. Nickerson Jr. Portrait Gallery:

Join us in the Joseph A. Nickerson Jr. Portrait Gallery for two new exhibits! One is on the historic first transatlantic flight of the NC-4. This is the story of groundbreaking aviation history that involves the town of Chatham 100 years ago. The second exhibit in this gallery “Chatham Digs,” showcases the findings from the archaeological dig that was done on the grounds of the Atwood property.

The Mural Barn:

Perhaps one of the most unique displays at the museum are these murals that provide a picture of a small town in the 1930s and 1940s. The murals were executed during that period by noted local artist Alice Stallknecht Wight. All of the people represented in the murals were residents of Chatham when Alice Stallknecht painted them.

Plus The Tool Room, the Lighthouse Turret, Joseph C. Lincoln Room, The Durand Room, Nickerson North Beach Camp, the Double Take exhibit, and the Life Saving Services and Coast Guard exhibit.


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